The Ho-Chunk Nation made a donation of $100,000 to the Friends
of Colburn Pool on Wednesday, June 17, to help save a Green Bay
It started about four years ago when city officials were discussing
the closure of the pool because standards were not up to date.
Thats when I started to gather petition signatures
to keep it open, said Olivia Crooks, a self-described pool
rat who spend all her summer time at the pool. I looked
at what it would take to keep it open, raised money to hire a contractor
to give an estimate on the repairs, and it took off from there.
Olivia said all the work is definitely worth it.
With the donation from the Ho-Chunk Nation, the project has
received a total of $645,000. One of the donations was from a prominent
couple in Green Bay, Bernie and Alyce Dahlin, who contributed $300,000
and, consequently, will half the naming rights for the pool.
After the check-passing ceremony, a reception and meal was held
in the Ho-Chunk Nation branch office.
By the end of the pool season, we hope to secure bonding
rights with the city, said Lori Crooks of the Friends of Colburn
Pool organization. Then we can start construction of the new
The new pool will be Olympic size, with eight lanes.
The city of Green Bay will pay for $3.5 million of the renovations
if the group raises $1 million. The Friends of Colburn Pool have
raised 60 percent of their goal.
With the donation, the Ho-Chunk Nation has the naming rights
for the community room, which will be open to the public on a year-round
basis. The Nation will have the ability to decorate the room however
the members wish. One of the suggestions being considered is to
provide a history of the Ho-Chunk people within the room.
Pam Noll, a Green Bay resident and mother frequently visits
Colburn Pool because she likes the atmosphere more than the two
other public pools in the city.
Ive been coming here since I was 5 so thats
been 23 years, she said. Its my home away from
The other pools are on the other side of the city and have many
other activities, such as slides and sand area and a rock climbing
wall. Noll said those activities are distractions and she only wants
to come to a pool for swimming.
The initiative was brought forth by the community,
said Area III Rep. Darren Brinegar. The tribal members in
the area will benefit greatly. Its good for the community.
Its a great opportunity to build relations with
the community and especially for the kids and future generations,
said Ho-Chunk Nation Vice President Heather Cloud.
Green Bay Packers Director of Public Affairs Aaron Popkey was
present for the check passing ceremony. He stated that the Packers
organization has donated $5,000 to the Colburn Pool project as well.
Weve supported the project from the beginning,
he said. Its a wonderful resource for the neighborhood.
Whats special is that this pool is right down the street from
Lambeau Field. Its a resource in the neighborhood, so we need
to support it financially. Likewise, the Ho-Chunk Nations
support is fantastic.
Ho-Chunk Nation President Jon Greendeer said the philosophy
behind any actions is to leave something better for the next generation.
Todays a good chance to witness exactly that,
Greendeer said. We also get to witness the work of a lot of
Olivia did something great, which shows her selflessness,
he said. We all work together for something to benefit other
people. There are a lot of $100,000 good causes out there, but we
have to look at where it is spent best. This is something that brings
families together. This is a healthy option, which comes back tenfold.
This is something that promotes being active and being outdoors.
With so many negative influences on children these days, its
good to be able to provide a resource that will allow children to
have fun in a great social environment.
Small changes point people in positive directions,
Greendeer said. People need to surround themselves with a