Ceremony celebrates new DBHS aquatic center

As USB members hustled around the completed Denis R. Paul Aquatic Center preparing the facility for its big day, the school’s Chamber Orchestra played welcoming music while guests filed in. To celebrate the recent completion of the pool and the founder of the idea, former Principal Denis R. Paul, Diamond Bar High School staff and community members congregated at the pool ribbon cutting ceremony on Dec. 11.

The celebration officially began with Marquis Choir’s singing “The Star Spangled Banner.” Once all the attendees were seated, Principal Catherine Real welcomed them, thanking the various committees and staff members who contributed to the milestone event. Then, Paul gave a commemoration speech, describing the long and arduous process it took to build the pool. As he acknowledged various contributors, Paul also emphasized how it had been the cooperation and joint effort displayed by the entire community that had made the project possible in the first place.

“I’m just so happy for this school; I’m so happy for these kids. It was a long time coming, 32 years, but I think it was well worth it. I just hope the kids see this as another educational facility. And that is really what it is, another place. When you can’t learn in the classroom, you learn here,” Paul stated.

To end the ceremony, the Walnut Valley Board of Trustees, Real and Paul walked over to the pool to cut the ribbon. The pool opening was made official when the varsity captains of the DBHS swim team made their first dives into the pool.

Prepared by USB, the pool ribbon cutting ceremony had various refreshments and special commemorations, including monitors displaying videos dedicated to the completion of the aquatic center. Despite ample preparations, several technical difficulties caused slight disturbances throughout the event. The loudspeakers of the aquatic center were facing the pool instead of toward the audience, thus making it difficult to hear the presentations and speeches made by Real, Paul and the WVUSD Board members.

The new pool will primarily be used for the school’s swim team and physical education classes, but will soon be open to the community for recreational activities during the summer as well. “We’re really excited. It’s going to take us to the next level, not only in swim, but also in the community. It’s something that community members can be a part of… and it’s going to be great for everyone involved,” Athletic Director Kurt Davies said.