Registration day for spring swimming lessons at the Weyburn Leisure Centre was on Tuesday, March 14th. It's always a busy day, with swimming lessons being in high demand in the City of Weyburn.
With spots filling up quickly, it leaves some residents feeling a bit frustrated.
Andrew Crowe, Director of Leisure Services with the City of Weyburn, said in regards to the high demand, "I like to think that's because of the high quality programming that our staff puts on over there and the valuable lessons that our users get out of participating in those lessons."
Crowe said that they are limited on class sizes and pool availability due to trying to accommodate the several different user groups and users that access their pool. He explained that they have to consider all of their lane swimmers, public swimmers, and evening user groups that require access several hours a week.
"We do have some limited spots in each season, so things typically fill up pretty quickly. We are lucky though, we are able to provide lessons four seasons of the year, which a lot of communities aren't able to do."
He said that they try to offer four sessions and to spread out the availability as much as possible.
The other issue they run into is staff capacity. "We have certain ratios that we need for kids," Crowe noted. "Our lesson sizes can only be up to six to 10 participants, dependent on age and skill levels. We just don't have enough pool space and enough pool time to offer significantly additional lessons."
However, in 2022, Crowe noted that they were able to put 1750 kids through swimming lessons in their different programs. "We do what we can to break down those barriers holding people out of the water, through our regular swim lessons, through our swim at school sessions, and through some home school programs that we run as well."
"Now, we've also opened up private lesson options for people to actually register for online. So if they weren't able to get into a lesson set, but they still want to get in the pool, that's another opportunity that they can look at."
The Weyburn Leisure Centre also offers public swimming and family swims to the community, as well as different events throughout the year. Crowe mentioned that they also have life jackets available for young children so they are able to get more comfortable in the water.
"We ask that parents follow our rules as far as watching their kids in the water, having them within arms reach and so forth."
Crowe suggested that if residents are not in a registered program, to take part in the public swim and get comfortable in the water. "Then the next time a spot comes up, try to get into the lessons again."
The majority of the lessons for this session have filled up within the first half hour of being open, Crowe said. "However, we do still have room in multiple parent and tot levels as well as in the Rookie, the Ranger and the Star patrol classes, so there are still options out there."
Crowe added that if residents were unsuccessful in getting registered in the swimming lessons, to register for the course waitlist, "because although certain courses do fill up almost immediately, we have some that don't always fill, and then if there's opportunity, we will open up some more of those popular spots."