Local kids could hardly wait for formalities to end before christening Patea's $1.3 million pool complex yesterday.
Even though the weather didn't rise to the occasion, hordes of schoolchildren jumped and dived into the water, quivering with that first cold shock.
The new pool was officially opened yesterday at 8.30am by South Taranaki District Mayor Ross Dunlop followed by a blessing by a local kaumatua and a speech by Patea Community Board chairman David Honeyfield.
Mr Dunlop said the new pool was a fantastic example of how the community and council had worked together.
"It was a big ask to raise the extra $675,000 needed to build the new pool but the Patea community - led by the Patea New Pool Committee, together with the council and the Patea Community Board - rose to that challenge," Mr Dunlop said.
The contractors should also be congratulated for the fantastic job they did in getting the facility ready for opening in a very short time frame, Mr Dunlop said.
The pool came on top of some other significant council projects in the past couple of years: the multimillion-dollar clean-up of the old freezing works, construction of the South Taranaki District Museum and the $2.6 million Patea Water Plant and reservoir.