By LINDA BEIER | Wilton
Mighty Wilton has struck out. I always thought Wilton was run well and had a lot to offer, was a town sought after as a place to live, was a town where people got along. But then every town has issues that all can’t seem to agree on — right now it’s the swimming pool in Wilton.
As the issues of the Wilton pool came up during July, I was always hopeful that a solution would be found and the pool would continue to function as it has every summer. But that didn’t happen. I watched in horror as bad went to worse and finally the pool closed. This really didn’t need to happen.
I would have liked to see more dialog between the lifeguards and the village board. There was some, but not all the guards got their chance to explain what exactly was going on at the pool. Maybe the board did not really want to know.
I was appalled to hear that a paper was confiscated from one of the guards by employees of the village. It was then used against several of the guards, eventually leading to their dismissal by the board. That was not right. I applaud those youth, several teenagers, who took their time to write up their concerns. They never got a chance to turn it in, since it was taken from them before they could do that. They may have decided not to turn it in, but we will never know that. That piece of paper should have been a starting point of starting to solve the problems — making concessions by both sides if need be to keep the pool operating. That didn’t happen.
Then the seasoned lifeguard/instructor of over 20 yrs. was fired — a good reason was never given. Perhaps he asked too many questions and began to rock the boat. Finally, the rest of the guards resigned — all but one.
So where does the pool go from here? How will Wilton ever get lifeguards next year when they see the mess that happened this year? Maybe the board will get their wish — get rid of the swimming pool! The board has said the pool is very expensive to run, and I believe that. But the dream of the Wilton Legion Post from the 1960s is still going here in 2022 — I don’t think they would be too happy to see the pool disappear — all their hard work to get the pool built so their village could have a great place for the kids and any others that wanted to use it. I certainly hope that the village board doesn’t go down that path. If asked, other towns and organizations and municipalities may be happy to donate to the pool.
I am hoping that we don’t have to say “mighty Wilton has struck out” for very long. I would like to see instead that “mighty Wilton hits a home run” by finding a solution to the problems at the pool so that next year we can start fresh and have a great pool season.