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History of the Pool

Madison's first municipal swimming pool became a reality in 2006. Long-time community members and philanthropists Irwin and Robert Goodman kicked off the project by donating $2.8 million. They wisely put some strings on the donation - the groundbreaking for the pool needed to be in July 2005. With that as incentive, the City and the Madison Parks Foundation dove into action.

The Mayor set aside $500,000 from the City's capital budget. The Cooper Family Foundation donated $250,000 and the Evjue Foundation, CUNA Mutual and American Family Insurance each generously donated $100,000. And making sure the project did not belly-flop, the generous citizens of Madison rounded out the colossal fundraising effort by sending in checks ranging from $1-$1,000, children sent in their weekly allowance and organizations sent in money from their local fundraising efforts.

An Ad-hoc Swimming Pool Committee was developed in July 2004. The committee's task was to determine the location of the pool as well as the features. Franklin Field, due to its central location and proximity to the beltline, was the number 1 choice for this pool. Warner Park and Reindahl Park came in 2nd and 3rd. In recognition of their support, Franklin Field, the pool's home, was renamed Irwin A. and Robert D. Goodman Park.

The features of the Goodman Pool include 1,000 person capacity, 2 waterslides, 8 lane 25-meter lap area with diving boards, and a number of shallow water play features for pre-school aged children. The pool area is complete with play area, concessions, changing rooms, deck chairs, umbrella tables and shade structures. Programs include swim lessons, swim and dive teams, adult water aerobics, lap swimming, special family events and lifeguard training. Goodman Pool's operating expenses are 100% paid for by the fees. The Madison Parks Foundation is currently continuing the fundraising for an endowment for Pool Scholarships. The City recognizes that not everyone is able to afford an entrance fee and fee for lessons. However, the goal is that everyone who wants to enjoy Madison's first municipal pool have that opportunity.