Arts & Entertainment

Clark Community Pool Celebrates Its 40th Birthday Today

The Clark Community Pool Celebrates Its 40th Anniversary   Credits: Susan Bonnell
The Mayor, members of the Town Council and  the Pool Advisory Board participated in a ribbon cutting ceremony   Credits: Susan Bonnell
From Left, Councilman Pat O'Connor, Mayor Sal Bonaccorso, Recreation Director Ralph Bernardo, Councilwoman Marie Soyka, Councilman Alvin Barr, President of the Clark Pool Advisory Board Karen DeMarco. Credits: Susan Bonnell
The groundbreaking ceremony in 1974 Credits: Susan Bonnell
Historic photos were on display at the pool.  This is a photo of the pool during construction. Credits: Susan Bonnell
The pool as it appears today. Credits: Susan Bonnell
Children waited patiently for custom balloon animals. Credits: Susan Bonnell
Stella Kelly has been a member of the Clark Community Pool for 40 years. Credits: Susan Bonnell
This historical photo on display shows the first Clark Community Pool Swim Team.  Annette Kelly is standing 7th from right. Credits: Susan Bonnell
11 year old Tyler DiPuma enjoys his sno-cone. Credits: Susan Bonnell
A special floating obstacle course. Credits: Susan Bonnell
A long line formed for a turn on the obstacle course. Credits: Susan Bonnell
Preparing to launch the rafts for the Raft Races. Credits: Susan Bonnell
Girls waited patiently for a balloon animal. Credits: Susan Bonnell
A penny find was held in the baby pool for the four and under crowd.  One of the participants shows off her find. Credits: Susan Bonnell

CLARK, NJ - The Clark Community Pool, located at 201 Oak Ridge Road, is celebrating its 40th birthday in style today.

The festivities opened at 11:30 am with a ribbon cutting ceremony attended by Mayor Sal Bonaccorso and town council members Pat O’Connor, Al Barr, and newly appointed Marie Soyka.  Bonaccorso thanked Recreation Director Ralph Bernardo and the members of the Clark Pool Advisory Board.  He said, “I think today it’s is the best it’s ever been under the wonderful leadership of this volunteer board.  The thing they always come back to me and the Council for is about making the pool better for all of you. Have a wonderful summer, and maybe we’ll see each other in another 40 years.”

More than 1,000 people were in attendance on a beautiful summer day to enjoy the many special activities taking place to celebrate the occasion.  Float races, a penny find in the baby pool, a giant floating obstacle course, balloon animals, a DJ, and a movie later in the day are just some of the special things happening.

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Free hot dogs and hamburgers, watermelon, cotton candy and sno-cones were being enjoyed by all.  The birthday cake was expected to arrive at around 3:00 pm.  Door prize winners were expected to be announced at about the same time.

Tyler DiPuma was a contented 11 year old as he lounged back enjoying a sno-cone.  He’s been a pool member for ten years and enjoys coming to the Clark Pool.  He said, “It cools you down and it’s really fun because you get to hang out with your friends.”

Stella Kelly, who laughingly declined to give her age, has been a Clark Pool member for its entire 40 year history.  She joined when the pool was built and her youngest daughter was 11 years old.  She explained, “My daughter Annette was on the first swim team, they came in first place. My son Thomas was one of the first lifeguards at the pool and my daughter Susan worked at the front desk.”  Her granddaughter, Taylor Drake, also grew up attending the Clark Pool and swam for many years on the swim team.  Kelly moved to Clark in 1965 and says she’s staying put.  

Recreation Director Ralph Bernardo said that memberships to the pool are still available for the season.  Membership is not limited to Clark residents and he encouraged anyone who wanted to visit the pool to stop by for a tour.

The birthday party continues today until 8:00 pm.

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