For more than 50 years and across multiple generations, the Cascade Municipal Pool has been utilized as both a summer cooling center and social center for Cascade-area citizens.

Those same people will get one last chance to give the old pool a proper send-off with an all-day pool party Sunday, July 28, from 1-7 p.m.

This will be the last day of service for the pool, which opened in June 1966. The 2019 pool season is being abbreviated to allow construction to begin on the brand-new pool, which has an expected completion date before summer 2020.

The pool party is free, and will include special events every hour. The list of events includes relay races, belly-flop contest, cannonball contest, dive for dimes, a past and present lifeguard photo at 4 p.m. and a doggie dip at 6:30 p.m. Shontele Orr serves on the Pool Committee and said the pool party will be a way for many pool patrons to relive some pleasant memories. “In talking to many people in the community the pool is a very nostalgic place for a lot of them, who took swimming lessons there and now their grandchildren are taking swimming lessons. We thought we’d have a party on the last day to recognize the many years it’s been here.”

The Pool Committee sought ideas from the public on the party, which will also feature non-traditional fares like cotton candy and snow cones. There will also be prizes awarded for the contests.

Orr said that the plaque from the old pool listing its builders will be displayed at the Tri-County Historical Society Museum and that other relics from the pool will be kept if in good shape.

In May 2018, voters voted overwhelmingly to allow the City of Cascade to issue a $2 million bond for a new municipal pool.

The Cascade Wave of the Future Capital Campaign received a grant from the Enhance Iowa Community Attraction and Tourism (CAT) Committee for $228,887.73. The grant successfully wrapped up the capital campaign that began last fall, and construction of the new swimming pool is scheduled to begin next month.

In addition, nearly 600 individual donations from Cascade community members total over $200,000. Thirty-two local businesses gave a collective $244,000. These include fundraisers by the Cascade swim team, Cascade and Aquin elementary schools, a beach towel and bag sale, and an event at Two Gingers Tavern. The City of Cascade will contribute $575,000 to the project, and the Dubuque and Jones County boards of supervisors pledged a combined $32,500. A total of $2,700 of in-kind contributions rounds out the project budget of $3.38 million.

Members of the grant writing committee were also successful with applications to the following organizations:

• Iowa Land and Water Conservation Fund — $75,000

• Jones County Community Foundation — $10,000

• Woodward Communications Foundation — $10,000

• Aureon Charity Grant — $700.00

The Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque has managed the project fund. “We are very grateful to the organizations who have invested in our project and our community,” said Amy Manternach, Cascade resident and vice president of finance and philanthropy at the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque. “We are equally thankful for the people of Cascade who have contributed time, treasure and talent to make our new pool a reality.”

Local contractors collaborated on the bid for a brand new, energy-efficient bathhouse with accessibility features, saving the project upward of $300,000. The design for the new pool also includes a 5,617 square-foot vessel with zero-depth entry, water features, six 25-yard lap lanes, both one- and three-meter diving towers and protective shade structures.

Replacement of the 50-year-old pool is a welcome advancement to the Cascade community. “Our new pool will be a place where residents and visitors make memories, children learn to swim, accessibility is a priority and outdoor exercise and health are celebrated by all ages,” said Manternach. “The project has been successful thanks to a grassroots effort from the community, and we look forward to enjoying the new pool next summer.”