Menlo Park City Council Email Log

[ By Date ] [ By Message ] [ By Subject ] [ By Author ]

** Menlo Swim

From: Pistorino, James <PistorinoJ_at_(domain_name_was_removed)>
Date: Fri, 15 Oct 2010 15:31:57 -0400

Dear City Council and Ms. Brandell:

I am writing to support Menlo Swim and Tim Sheeper continuing to run the swimming operations at Burgess Park Pool.

I have been a resident of Menlo Park since 2002 and an avid user of the pool since it reopened. I have had an opportunity to extensively observe the operations of the pool from the user's perspective. I swim with the Menlo Masters group, my three children have all taken swim lessons at the pool, they are all now in the Mavericks program, and also have attended the swim camps during the last two summers. During the summer, we also come to the pool on weekends to cool off. On average, my family is at the pool 4-5 days a week. I do not know Tim Sheeper personally, I am not on the triathlon team, and my only exposure to him has been at the workouts and around the pool. As a life-long swimmer, I have had the opportunity to observe masters programs across the country and even locally. I have experience being on kids, high school and masters swim teams and have also taught swimming and worked as a life guard.

All that said, in my view, the pool is exceedingly well run. The masters program is vibrant and welcoming to swimmers of all skill levels (I am middling, at best). Coaching on technique is offered and there are many convenient workout times. It is really a fun group with great camaraderie that does a lot outside of the pool (fund raisers, open water swims, etc.). The sheer size of the masters program is one indicator of how well it is run. It is amazing to come to a 7:00am workout and see the pool filled and know that another group already swam at 5:45am, another workout starts at Noon, and, depending on the day, another workout will be held that evening. The cost of the masters program is very reasonable and should not be a barrier to anyone joining. This program is a true asset for Menlo Park.

By its nature, swimming instruction for kids is transitory (the kids move through and younger coaches that the kids relate to also move through). That said, we have been very pleased with the instruction and all my kids are very good swimmers thanks to the program.

In my experience, kids swim teams can be over the top competitive (and the kids subsequently burn out) or not serious enough (and the kids lose interest). I think Mavericks has the balance right. The coaches are energetic and fun and the whole thing is done with an air of improving, having fun, and trying hard without devolving into grueling workouts that can kill the fun of swimming for younger kids.

The lifeguards are on top of the situation even when the pool is totally filled on hot summer days. Indeed, if I had any criticism, I think the lifeguards are a little too strict and more horse play should be allowed with less whistle blowing. However, it is very tough to guard a crowded public pool with such a mix of young and inexperienced swimmers and competition to use the facilities in different ways.

The few times we have had complaints or problems at that pool, they were responded to appropriately in a professional, friendly manner.

I do not profess to know anything about the financial arrangements or the way the contract was originally awarded.

However, I do know that the pool is very well run and that Menlo Swim and Tim Sheeper are assets to Menlo Park that should not be underestimated.

I hope you will keep these observations in mind when considering whom to award the contract to.

James Pistorino
224 Lexington Dr.
Menlo Park, CA

P.S.: I suggest that swim suit spinners (such as the Suitmate Swimsuit Dryer) be installed in the bathrooms. Though I am not affiliated with them in any way, they are a convenient way of drying a suit in seconds and would be a nice addition. I have used them at other pools and people really liked the convenience of leaving with a dry swim suit.

James C. Pistorino

1950 University Avenue, 4th Floor
East Palo Alto, CA 94303
Direct: +1 650.798.3580
Fax: +1 650.745.3458

Amsterdam Brussels Chicago East Palo Alto Houston Irvine London Los Angeles Madrid
Munich New York Northern Virginia Paris Salt Lake City San Francisco Taipei Washington DC

This email and any attachments contain information from the law firm of Howrey LLP, which may be confidential and/or privileged. The information is intended to be for the use of the individual or entity named on this email. If you are not the intended recipient, be aware that any disclosure, copying, distribution or use of the contents of this email is prohibited. If you receive this email in error, please notify us by reply email immediately so that we can arrange for the retrieval of the original documents at no cost to you. We take steps to remove metadata in attachments sent by email, and any remaining metadata should be presumed inadvertent and should not be viewed or used without our express permission. If you receive an attachment containing metadata, please notify the sender immediately and a replacement will be provided. Howrey LLP consists of two separate limited liability partnerships, one formed in the United States (Howrey US) and one formed in the United Kingdom (Howrey UK). Howrey UK is registered in England and Wales under number OC311537 and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (http://www.sra.org.uk/code-of-conduct.page). Howrey’s London and Paris offices are operated as part of Howrey UK. A list of the partners of Howrey UK is available for inspection at its registered office: 5 New Street Square, London EC4A 3BF. A consolidated list of all Howrey US and Howrey UK attorneys and jurisdictions where they are authorized to practice and/or are registered can be obtained by contacting emailrequest@howrey.com. Received on Fri Oct 15 2010 - 12:32:01 PDT

[ Home ][ Search ] [ By Date ] [ By Message ] [ By Subject ] [ By Author ] [ 05/06 Archive ] [ 07/08 Archive ][ Watch City Council Meetings ]

Email communications sent to the City Council are public records. This site is an archive of emails received by the City Council at its city.council@menlopark.org email address. The posting process is automated and can cause formatting issues when viewed from the website. File attachments sent to this address can be viewed as a link from the main message body. Please note the City Council is also copied on each correspondence. This site can be viewed by the public and sorted by subject, date, author or message thread. The email address of the sender is not disclosed for security purposes. It is the City's practice to remove SPAM (Unsolicited Bulk Email) email from the Council email log. If you believe your email has been removed in error, please contact the City at ccin.log@menlopark.org.