In 1962, the YMCA of Natrona County opened a swimming pool and began offering swimming lessons to Casper-area residents. Today, some of them still frequent the YMCA for a swim.

And on Monday, they got a brand new six-lane swimming pool, family pool and hot tub to enjoy.

Monday's additions culminate the second phase of the non-profit's Build Tomorrow Today campaign, which saw its first phase of significant improvements in 2017.

Along with the new swimming facilities, Monday's additions saw a universal locker room, pool viewing area, birthday party/training room, community studio and child watch open.

NERD YMCA of Natrona County CEO Stephanie Disburg said the additions are simply in line with the organization's mission: Serving Natrona County.

"We meet needs for every phase in life," Disburg said,

She gave the example of YMCA members who learned to swim in the early 1960s when the first Natrona County facility opened on 15th Street. Some 60 years later, those members still frequent the pool to take a swim.

Zach Spadt, Townsquare Media
Zach Spadt, Townsquare Media

And it's a community effort, particularly with capital campaigns like Build Tomorrow Today whose second phase cost YMCA $10.8 million.

"We rely on the community," Disburg said. "We try to be the best stewards of donors' money."

With the new and improved swimming facilities, Disburg said there were be greater opportunities for children to learn to swim. Not only is that a healthy activity, it's a lifelong skill that could prevent drownings here in Natrona County.

Now, with a bigger pool, there will be more kids with more opportunities to learn to swim, she added.

Also on the horizon — Disburg said the YMCA is partnering with the Natrona County School District to teach every third-grade student in the school district how to swim.

It's a community resource.

"It isn't just a gym or just a pool," Disburg said.

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