Wading pool set for removal; many memories left

Sunday Times Newspapers

ALLEN PARK – A city icon will be gone within the next two weeks when the wading pool at Pretty Family Park is removed and the hole filled.

“It was a fairly iconic thing in Allen Park,” Councilman Harry Sisko said.

As a child, Sisko said, the wading pool was the place to be.

“That wading pool was the destination in the ’50s,” he said. “It’s kind of sad to see it go.”

While he admits the wading pool’s time has come and gone, he remembers how excited children would get to go to there to cool down on hot summer days.

The two-and-a-half-foot-deep pool was closed in 2008 due to budget constraints. Residents attempted to raise money to reopen it to no avail. The annual cost of approximately $12,000 forced its closing.

“That wading pool was built by my father,” said Mayor William Matakas of the pool built in 1942 during World War II. “I won’t say they got the concrete legally for it. That was a war item.

“I paid for my undergrad working there. It’s a personal loss to us.”

Excavation fill of approximately 150 yards, from the Kennedy Park playground is stored at Pretty Park and will be used to fill the resulting hole once the pool is removed.

(Tereasa Nims can be reached at dstreporter@gmail.com.)