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Letters to the Editor

Making the case for MPAC

Community development, service to others, and providing a better future for generations to come were ideals instilled in me from my parents, a 30+ year county supervisor/farmer (dad) and educator (mom).

My husband and I moved back home after 16 years of college and other careers. I wanted to immediately become involved in giving back to the communities that had given me so much growing up. I was excited at all that was happening in Union County. Towns were becoming revitalized, renovations happening to old buildings, new businesses developing, new fairground buildings and a splash pad in Afton. We have beautiful lakes, city parks, trails ... which have brought in millions of dollars over the years.

However, there are more opportunities for Union County growth and tourism potential. One of the many opportunities I support, that will provide tourism and growth, is MPAC (McKinley Park Aquatic Center). A renovated pool is desperately needed. Our current pool is not safe for 4- to 7-year-olds. For this age range, the baby pool is too shallow and the larger pool is too deep. We usually take our 6- year- old daughter to Winterset or Corning aquatic centers due to this issue. I know of many families in Union County who choose to swim at other aquatic centers that have safe, zero-depth entry.

Also, our pool is not heated. This limits the season and times to enjoy the pool. A heated pool would allow the pool to open earlier in the year and all day, allowing for different programs (adult lap swim, water walking in the lazy river, tot swim, adaptive swim times and lessons.)

I also have a vested interest in MPAC as a family nurse practitioner. Health prevention and wellness is a huge part of my practice. Swimming is an excellent cardiovascular exercise, and can benefit those with arthritis, chronic pain and fibromyalgia. On a daily basis, I see unhealthy, obese children. I am screening for high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes, diseases that we used to associate with adults. Some children are not getting the activity they need. Having an up to date, fun aquatic center can help get families out of the house and motivated to move and play, therefore reducing their risks of chronic disease.

I am asking you to vote yes to the McKinley Park Aquatic Center bond on the city ballot, Nov 5, 2019. This is your opportunity to invest in the future. Let’s work together to achieve a goal that will bring revenue, health and happiness to Union County.

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