After five years of grassroots fundraising by local Girl Scout volunteers, members and guests of Girl Scouts Louisiana East broke ground for Camp Covington’s newest addition, an in-ground swimming pool, during a groundbreaking ceremony on January 6.
The 1,200-square foot, rectangular swimming pool will be located on the north side of the camp’s dining hall, and include a 10-foot swim out (ledge for sitting), as well as a heater/cooler and lights. It will range from 3 feet to 8 feet deep and will also include a handicap ADA-lift.
Jill Pollard, Chief Development Officer, Program & Properties, at Girl Scouts Louisiana East, and Chief Executive Officer Rebecca Pennington, reflected on the camp’s nearly 92-year history, before Girl Scout service unit administrator for the Covington area, Debbie Melancon, Girl Scout Ambassador Jordan Williams, and Pennington, broke ground, supported by Charles Elfert and Kevin Allen of Pleasure Pools and Covington Mayor Mike Cooper.
For the last five years Girl Scout volunteers in Covington and other parts of the council raised over $40,000 for the camp to have a swimming pool, which combined with a $25,000 gift from Girl Scout alum and former camp counselor Jewell Wunderlich and her husband Richard, made their dream of a pool a reality.
“We’re very excited that this long-awaited project is coming to fruition,” said Pollard. “Between our temperate weather and the heater and cooler we’re adding, the pool will be available for use by campers most of the year.”
According to Pennington, the Girl Scouts also hope to offer the pool as a location for community swimming lessons.
In 2017, over 7,350 individuals utilized the council’s three camp properties of which Camp Covington is the oldest, having opened in 1927. Encouraging girls to spend time outdoors, where they gain important skills, is an essential part of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.