• 68°

Dinkins pool vandalized

SELMA — Selma’s recreation fortunes have taken a second hit.

The East Selma Fish Pond is currently closed until October due to a parasite, and the opening of Dinkins Pool was been delayed due to vandalism.

Both facilities are in Ward 8.

“It’s a detriment this unfortunate setback happened to the ward and the community,” Corey Bowie, City Councilman for Ward 8, said. “First it was the fish pond, and we’re having feelings of anger and sadness. It’s a shame we have to regress when we’re trying to progress. There’s no point for it.”

The pool was scheduled to open Monday, but theft of copper pipes and a water pump from the bathrooms have forced its closure for a few more weeks. Elton Reece, director of Selma Recreation Department, said the pool suffered about $4,000 worth of damage.

“We’re trying to find the money,” Reece said. “I’m hoping we’ll be able to open it in three to four weeks.”

Reece and Tracy Williams, Selma recreation program director, said water cannot be turned on to the pool until the bathrooms are fixed.

While the pool at Brown YMCA is available for public use, Bowie said repairing Dinkins Pool is important for the community.

“It’s an asset for the kids,” Bowie said. “They’re out for the summer, and (swimming) is a way they can bond with each other and do something constructive.”

Bowie said he has already talked with Mayor George Evans and the Selma Police Department about increasing patrols in the area to prevent another break-in from occurring.

“We’re planning to increase police and instrument a neighborhood watch,” Bowie said. “We have one neighborhood watch, but it’s on the other side of (the ward from the pool). And there are some other things we are planning.”

Bowie wouldn’t elaborate on what the other measures are.

While the pool wasn’t able to open Monday as planned, seven playgrounds did.

The playgrounds will be open with a supervisor present from 8 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday. They are located at Youth Development Center and Byrd, Payne, Clarke, Edgewood, Meadowview and Sophia P Kingston elementary schools.

“A lot of kids don’t have anything in their neighborhoods,” Williams said. “They may play baseball or softball, but that’s winding down. This is for June and July, and it’s supervised and gives them something to do.”

Tennis lessons also started Monday at the courts behind Memorial Stadium.

Lessons are conducted Monday and Wednesday nights from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. depending on age and Saturday from 8 to 10 a.m.