Thursday, February 19, 2009

On Location: Davan Pool

With the exception of Riverbank Park, Davan Pool is the most versatile civic space in Westbrook.

Nestled within the Fred C. Wescott Junior High School building on East Bridge Street, the 146,000-gallon pool ensures Westbrook not only serves as an annual dateline for one of southern Maine's premier high school swimming events, but also occasionally plays host to Olympians (Maine-bred Ian Crocker has taken more than a couple dips in the pool and Anita Nall visited in June 2000).

And besides serving as the place where countless Westbrook children have learned to swim, the pool named in honor of longtime athletic coach and administrator John "Paddy" Davan continues to provide a place at which Westbrook's seniors can lubricate their aching joints. And where Westbrook's churches schedule socials, Westbrook's parents throw birthday parties, and Westbrook's Boy Scouts organize outings.

Moreover, vigorous training beneath the taunting gaze of the pool's crimson record board has yielded numerous state champions and collegiate swimmers (thanks to the Westbrook Seals, the most successful youth program you've never heard of), as well as a middle-aged woman's attempt to swim the English Channel (thanks to the pool's adult open swim hours).

- John C.L. Morgan

Related: On Location: Warren Centennial Gymnasium
Related: On Location: Westbrook Open Rec
Related: On Location: Riverbank Park

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