Wibit Open House Sunday at Alpena Plaza Pool

Courtesy Photo A brand-new Wibit is in use at the Alpena Plaza Pool, and a free open house is planned for Sunday in two waves: Noon to 2 p.m. and 3 to 5 p.m. Those planning to attend should register online at www.alpenaplazapool.com/wibit.

ALPENA — What is a Wibit? Find out Sunday at Alpena Plaza Pool at a free Wibit Open House.

A Wibit is an inflatable floating obstacle course for children age 4 and up, and families, including adults. The open house, sponsored by Assured Partners, has two time slots: Noon to 2 p.m. or 3 to 5 p.m. Each time slot has a limited number of participants, so please sign up in advance at www.alpenaplazapool.com/wibit.

Plaza Pool Director Kim Bolanowski explained why it’s called a Wibit, and the process of acquiring the 55-foot floating play structure.

“Like a frog, you’re leaping,” Bolanowski said, noting the similarity between “ribbit” and “Wibit.” “It’s an inflatable obstacle course that takes up the entire pool, pretty much.”

She noted that advance registration is requested.

“We’d like them to go online and register so that we can get a head count,” Bolanowski said.

She said this new Wibit is even better than the other inflatables they have used in the past.

“We used to have what was called the Fun Run, and it was here for 12 years,” she said. “It just had outlived its life. And, when that went down, we had several people that would call for birthday parties that wanted to book it. They liked it during open swim, so my mission was to go out and find something that I thought we could replace it with.”

She searched different websites and discovered the Wibit brand.

“I went into different websites that created inflatables for pools,” Bolanowski said. “Wibit actually creates them for the lake and ocean, as well.”

She was impressed with the quality and safety of the products from Wibit.

“It was rated one of the safest for guards and patrons,” she said. “That’s why it drew my attention. Also, it didn’t have to run off of a blower the entire time. We blow it up, and it stays up.”

The funding for the Wibit came from fundraising and the Youth and Recreation millage.

“Friends of the Plaza Pool worked directly with me and they wrote a grant for the Youth and Rec millage,” Bolanowski said. “And they were approved. So, the majority of the money came from the Youth and Rec millage, and then the Friends of the Plaza Pool did put in to have it shipped here.”

This inflatable has been in the works for two years, and now it is available for the community to enjoy.

“I think it’s great,” Bolanowski said. “I think people will love it. It’s for all ages, from 4 and up, so adults can use it, too, which is something that we couldn’t do on the other one.”

She said teens can come enjoy the Wibit, as well.

“It’s an option for teenagers, as well,” she said. “We’re lacking in stuff, I feel, in our community, for teenagers that aren’t in sports, so this gives them something else they can do.”

She added that Assured Partners has funded the entire open swim on Sunday so that it can be available to the community.

“They are the sponsor for the Wibit Open House,” Bolanowski said. “It is a very good thing for the community.”

If you have any questions, call the Plaza Pool at 989-354-8287. The pool is located at Alpena High School, 3303 S. 3rd Ave.


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