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Important Update  
Important Update

An important announcement for our patrons and supporters:

We were so excited to re-open the pool on June 22. For those who were able to come to the facility, it was wonderful to see you.

However, the combination of very low attendance, the lack of income for the past three months, and an increase of COVID-19 cases in Lane County has left the Tamarack Board of Directors no choice but to close Tamarack Wellness Center at its current location as of 7/2/2020.

A very tough decision:

Tamarack Wellness Center is a non-profit organization offering aquatic wellness programs at the site of the Easter Seals pool that opened in 1980. TWC is funded by patron user fees, grants, and generous donations. Unlike most community pools, we have operated without subsidy or support from a tax base.

Unfortunately, the COVID-19 virus caused the suspension of our programs from March 14-June 21. In March, we had hoped to reopen on April 1. When that opportunity did not come about, we shut the heat off, and most staff were laid off. Thanks to generous donors in our Spring fundraising drive, we were able to hold on in hopes of reopening in May.

On May 15, we received a Payroll Protection Program loan from the federal government that allowed us to pay rent, utilities, and staff for a limited time, and that would be forgiven if all the program criteria were met. To meet the terms of the loan, we brought staff back on to complete the annual maintenance that we usually complete in August. We did not want to open in June and then shutdown for needed maintenance in August.

Phase 2 reopening was approved by the Governor for Lane County on June 5. Now that we had the green light, we needed to hire and train staff and set up all the necessary processes to meet the state of Oregon guidelines for social distancing and sanitation protocols for patrons and staff. We targeted June 22 as the date to reopen.

Unfortunately, reservations were few and we received many cancellations, resulting in less than one sixth of normal attendance. This level of attendance does not allow for a financially sustainable operating model, even in the short term, even with the PPP loan. With expectations for a pandemic resurgence, our future ability to sustain operations has been severely compromised.

What now?

We realize this news is disappointing to many of you, and the board is also disappointed that we are unable to continue operations at this location at this time.

If you purchased a pre-paid punch card between March 1, 2020 and July 2, 2020 for future visits to the pool, you will receive a full refund. We will be reaching out to individuals for reimbursement. Unfortunately, we are unable to reimburse anyone who purchased a punch card prior to the dates listed even if there are visits remaining. Thank you for your understanding.

In the meantime, we are creating a list of resources available to our loyal patrons so they can continue pursuing wellness. Look for another communication with that information soon. We will also communicate with our suppliers and vendors and make arrangements to vacate the facility.

If you have pressing questions or concerns in the meantime, please leave a voicemail message at the pool (541 686 9290) or email info@tamarackaquatic.org and we will do our best to get back to you with a timely response.

The future

Even with our financial challenges, the board recognizes that the Tamarack Wellness Center community is not about a particular location, but about the people we serve and programming we offer. Tamarack is a non-profit serving many special needs clients and families in Lane County with warm water rehabilitation programs, therapeutic interventions, fitness and recreation activities with a focus on health and wellness. We are the stewards of a special community of dedicated, caring staff, instructors, healthcare providers, individual caregivers, clients, and families who visit our program for pain relief, recovery, physical therapy, fitness, fun and friendship.

As such, the Tamarack Wellness Center Board of Directors is looking toward the future. Our board has been discussing long term, sustainable strategies for expanding and strengthening the Tamarack community and the importance of partnerships with other, like-minded organizations is a consistent theme. We are pursuing discussions with other organizations and aquatic locations to explore the possibility of continuing our programming elsewhere in the community once the pandemic abates and regulations allow for sustainable operations.

In closing, we want to express our deepest thanks to all of you for your support over the years at this location. The supportive community you helped to create is unique and heartwarming. While we won’t be seeing you together on a regular basis for a while, please know that the board will work hard to seek future opportunities for us to gather again safely in the water.

Thank you for everything.

The Tamarack Wellness Center Board of Directors and Staff