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One of CCN's initiatives for this year includes sponsoring open gym time for families to gather during the winter months. Gym space will open in January and February for community members to practice or be part of pick-up games. Learn more..
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Needham needs a new pool, community agrees

By Wei-Huan Chen, Needham Times July 23, 2013
Swimming advocates came together at Needham Town Hall Monday night, July 22, to sound off on why the town sorely needs a new pool. The Parks and Recreation Commission held a public hearing on the fate of Rosemary Pool, an outdoor pool built within the manmade more..
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Needham supports a new pool
Rosemary is beyond its intended lifespan by 30 years.
An engineering firm is currently studying options for a swimming facility in Needham
Rosemary Pool was built to last until 1982
According to a local survey done in 2012,
66% of Needham residents favor
a new town-sponsored swimming facility.

CCN Sponsored Study: The Most Efficient Utilization of the Rosemary Site

Luminary Stroll now Combined with the Blue Tree Lighting

Community Center of Needham is excited to announce the return of the popular Luminary Stroll event now combined with the annual Blue Tree Lighting and Merchant's Holiday Stroll. The event will take place on Saturday and Sunday, December 6-7.

Saturday will be filled with shopping in Needham Center, crafts, lantern making and performers from 12:00 to 5:00 PM. A spectaular magic show at 3:30 PM inside Powers Hall followed by a Lantern Parade to the Blue Tree Lighting at 5:00 PM. To be finished off with a new, bigger fire performance immediately following the Lighting.

Sunday evening Neighborhoods will light their Luminaries in peaceful celebration of their community. This year's event will help close a gap for gym space by sponsoring open gym time duing the winter.

Get the full schedule at

New Pool, So Cool!

CCN appreciates all of your support this past year in ensuring the scope of the Rosemary Pool project includes more elements of a Community Center in its plan. The results of the feasibility study did not determine where the pool should be located on the property – in the lake or out of the lake. The P&R board voted that the decision about location be determined after further study in the design phase. Funds for the next Design Phase will be requested at the May 2015 Town Meeting. Please stay tuned!

The Big Picture - A Community Center as part of the Master Plan

The Master Plan Working Group has spent countless hours on the development of a master plan for Needham, which includes a community center. There are many challenges to implement this vision given the limited parcels of land that are available for the many needs of our town. Part of the process involves weighing the options of the usage and designation of the land owned by the town.

A meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 22 at 7 pm for the town committees and departments (Park and Recreation, Needham Public Schools, Department of Public Works, Police and Fire, etc.) to discuss the options presented in the Town Master Plan and the possible scenarios of the land's use, which is overseen by these committees. This meeting is open to the public, but it is not a hearing. Come listen and learn about the pros and cons of each of the land scenarios. The files on this project are too large to share via the internet but CDs are available at the Town Hall.

Feasibility Study Results Presented

Thank you to everyone who attended the Park & Rec meeting at Powers Hall on December 9th. The four options discussed at the meeting were:

  • Decommission Pool
  • Minor Renovation
  • Major Renovation
  • Full Replacement

Many residents spoke up to express their dreams for Rosemary including Ken Keyes; “Why would Needham shortchange itself and go for anything less than an option that will serve us for the next 40 to 50 years, just as the current Rosemary Pool has served us for the past several decades? Anything less would be shortsighted.”

The feasibility study Final Report by Weston & Sampson can be found at:

Survey Results Are In!

During the last four months of 2013, the Community Center of Needham (CCN) surveyed its supporters and interested residents about their pool and lake use. Consisting of 23 questions, the document asked respondents about everything from general pool and lake usage to specific aspects of Rosemary pool. Individuals, parents, athletes, community leaders, seniors and young people were among the 657 respondents.

Highlights include:
  • 97% of respondents believe that Needham should offer outdoor swimming
  • 81% think Needham should offer year-round swimming
  • 54% rated Rosemary’s cleanliness as “poor” or “very poor”
  • 97% rated the central location of Rosemary as “good” or “excellent"

For three years CCN has been working to raise interest in improving community recreational facilities in Needham.
Our three priorities reflect the needs expressed to us by you, our fellow residents, Town leaders, civic and business partners: (1) create a year-round swimming facility, (2) create a safe gathering place for youth, (3) increase community-wide recreational opportunities.

So now, where to start? Rosemary Pool is 30 years beyond its intended lifespan and attached to a lake, making it difficult to maintain. This leaves Needham residents, young, old and in between looking for other options that are better suited to meet their needs.

In 2001, Needham allocated money to study the feasibility of a new pool at the site, but only now when the community has shown a strong interest, is this study taking place. With the alignment of these events, CCN has made a new pool its top priority.

Please join our 'Pool First' campaign by signing our petition and "liking" our facebook page.

Let's shout it out … Needham is ready for a new pool!

Residents Fill Town Hall to Discuss Pool Options

It was standing room only as residents turned out last night at the Park and Rec Commission's "Blue Sky" meeting to discuss the future of Rosemary Pool. Residents of all ages lined up to share their memories of Rosemary and give their visions of what a future site could be. Commissioners sat patiently while person after person went up to the microphone and spoke about all aspects of Rosemary Pool and Lake. One thing was clear--Needhamites have a passion for swimming at many levels. What they do not have, and desperately need, is appropriate facilities to accommodate the requirements of all the groups who spoke out last night. They include master swimmers, competitive swimmers, divers, scuba divers and recreational swimmers. People spoke out who want an indoor pool, an outdoor pool, or both-including a pool with a retractable bubble roof. Some wanted a pool in a lake, a pool separate from the lake or the lake alone. Still others were focused on the area surrounding the pool and lake and what it could become. What most speakers agreed upon is that Needham has a great asset in Rosemary and there is room for improvement.

There was energy in the room surrounding fundraising, a public-private partnership and community collaboration. One person joked that the commissioners' jobs had been made easier since one of the four options had been eliminated--the one to decommission the pool and not offer a public swimming facility to residents is clearly no longer viable.

The commissioners indicated that they would take the enormous volume of comments from the evening, categorize them and share them with everyone in a public format.

While we await that, the Community Center of Needham would like to thank all of our supporters who attended the meeting tonight. The turnout was fantastic and the meeting was a significant step on the road to CCN's first priority-a new pool!

Our Vision for a New Pool

  • A year-round swimming facility that is accessible and affordable to all residents
  • A pool that will encourage residents to "Swim Needham" and offer an alternative to the expensive private pool memberships offered in neighboring towns
  • A facility suitable for our school and town's swim teams so they do not have to practice and compete out of town
  • A facility where residents of all ages can learn to swim and enjoy recreational and refreshing water fun
  • A year-round gathering place for members of our community

It's time to create new Swimming facilities in Town

..given a set of potential problems with the facility, the pool’s long-term future is uncertain. Read more...

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