Platte County swim teams set to benefit from expansion

Pool, timing system should be ready to go for Community Center North’s ribbon-cutting on July 18

The main benefit of the Platte County Community Center North’s multi-million-dollar addition for Platte County High School’s swimming and diving teams is obvious.

Since the establishment of the programs in the late 1990s, the school utilized Riverfront Community Center in Leavenworth, Kan., as the “home” facility. The boys have never hosted a true home competition, and the girls were limited to one Senior Night event on occasions. “We’ve been putting our kids on a bus and having to go over to Leavenworth,” activities director Phil Dorman said, “and then the kids get back later than what other kids do from practices, so that’s taking away some of their family and their home time.” The ribbon-cutting for the updated building is at 11:30 a.m. July 18, and the eight-lane pool with ability to operate as 25-yard or 25-meters plus a 1-meter diving board and team locker rooms serves as the centerpiece. On June 16, the Platte County Board of Alderman approved Colorado Timing Systems’ bid to supply the scoreboard and timing system for the facility. That should also be installed and functional in time for the opening, according to Platte County Parks and Recreation director Brian Nowotny. Platte County’s swim teams become the priority users for the new competition pool after school hours. In addition, the boys plan to host an invitational with about eight teams starting this year, and both programs will have the opportunity to add home duals, tris and quads to the schedule for the first time. Eventually, a girls invitational and potentially Suburban League meets could become a possibility for the community center, according to Dorman. The new facility also includes bleacher seating for about 300 spectators, a big change from the past setup. “Really, it’s not (been) home,” Dorman said. “Kids don’t drive over to Leavenworth. We have a home meet now, we’re going to have kids there to watch.” The facility will also host youth leagues and other meets not affiliated with school competition, Nowotny said. There could be also be additional educational opportunities for the Platte County School District due to the partnership between it, the county and the YMCA.