It was five years of waiting, but school officials and parents – at least one of whom no longer had a student at the school – christened the new pool at Monday.
The Stallions and finally hosted its own meet. Up until March 5, the team had been traveling to in Las Flores for practice and when that school’s pool was booked.
The Board of Trustees was when as a brand new superintendent, Joseph Farley asked the trustees to hold off.
“He had the audacity to say wait, and we all said, ‘Who the heck is he?’ ” joked Principal Tom Ressler.
The pool’s design went through some refinements, and construction finally began .
“Have you ever seen such a beautiful pool,” marveled Farley. Everything is state-of-the-art, from the pool itself, at 30 meters and a warming area, to the lighting, sound and scoreboard, he said.
The pool and the football stadium – – represent the last pieces to complete the school, which has “got to be one of the most beautiful high school campuses,” Farley said.
“This pool has been worth the wait,” said Board of Trustees President Gary Pritchard. “Opening a substandard pool is not an option.”
City leaders were also on hand.
“We are just so darned proud to have this wonderful school here,” said San Juan Capistrano Mayor Larry Kramer. “I know things economically are very difficult. How you pulled it altogether, I don’t even want to ask.”
Students from the Stallions swim team put on a demonstration of the various strokes.
Said junior Andrew Scholte: “As a swimmer and a water polo player, it is wonderful to have an aquatic center to call home. I will in no way miss commuting to practice.”
But for one member in the audience, the day had an especially sweetness to it. Margie Tinsley, a parent who when it was just a stretch of asphalt, has since moved to Seattle, but made the trip back to Orange County to witness the grand opening.
She wasn’t one of the speakers, but she was thrilled to take it all in, especially the swimming demonstration.
“I’m so excited for the kids, and when I saw them in the water, I said, ‘Yes!’ ”