BG pool operated at $29,230 loss in ‘22 — but budget is still afloat


The Bowling Green City Pool and Waterpark Complex saw a rise in revenues this year – as well as an increase in expenses.

The BG Parks and Recreation Board heard the summary of the facility’s 2022 season during Tuesday’s regular meeting.

“Overall our revenues went up about 3.5%,” said Recreation Coordinator Ivan Kovacevic.

In a a year with a tough economy — and without raising prices — it’s a pretty strong year, he said.

Total revenues jumped from $314,827 in 2021 to $326,085 this year, or about $11,258. Daily admissions saw an increase of $18,854 and concessions realized a profit of about $12,236.

However, Kovacevic said that seasonal pass revenue did take a dip, down about $12,390.

“You’ll have that with passes, where people buy passes one year,” but find they don’t use them as much, and then switch to daily admissions the next year, and then may switch back the next, he said.

Kovacevic also said that swim lesson revenues “were still pretty strong,” dipping $858 from last year. However, he noted that this year’s maximum class sizes were reduced from 18 to 12, both to improve instruction and to lessen the load on staffing.

Operating costs, including administrative costs and maintenance, went up about $25,552, or 7.7%, Kovacevic said – close to the rate of inflation.

With all costs and expenses included, the true bottom line of the facility was a loss of $29,230. However, with the $20,000 in American Rescue Plan Act funding provided by the city to help compensate for rising costs, that was reduced to $9,230.

In 2021, the true bottom line for the facility was a loss of $14,935. A three-year average of the true bottom line from 2017-19 was a loss of $23,016.

Also at the meeting, the board:

• Heard from Parks and Recreation Director Kristin Otley that the ribbon cutting for the new inclusive playground at Carter Park was held Tuesday, and was well attended. She said that nearly every city department took part in the project, a partnership with the Wood County Plays organization, with at least 1,000 staff hours involved.

“A lot of hard work, but it’s totally worth it when you look at those kids playing out there,” she said.

• Heard from Ardy Gonyer, board member and liaison to the Parks and Recreation Foundation Board, that the September Party for the Parks event was a “very successful event for the foundation,” with a net revenue of $19,000. Additionally, the inaugural BG Brew Fest event was also successful, he said – all 200 of the event’s tickets sold out. Final revenues have not yet been determined, Gonyer said, but a total of over $3,000 is expected.

• Heard that the parks were awarded a grant from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources of approximately $20,000 to help fund shade structures and concrete pathways for the Eli Joyce ball field at City Park. Kovacevic said that so far, $27,500 in grants has been raised for the $49,000 project.

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