Ten years ago, a group of friends came together with the desire to teach inner-city children the basics of safe swimming. Seeing that there was a lack of accessibility to a public pool in areas of Minneapolis, Minneapolis Swims members made connections in these neighborhoods and began bringing the children of these neighborhoods to private pools in other areas to teach them how to swim. The participation requests grew, and Minneapolis Swims realized a more formal organization was needed in order to serve more children.
Minneapolis Swims officially incorporated as a non-profit in 2009. In March of 2010, the Phillips Community Center swimming pool, owned by the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB), was one week away from being filled with concrete. Minneapolis Swims rallied the community to save the pool, and the next year was spent successfully negotiating with the MPRB to the terms of the lease agreement for the pool, and the fundraising goals for the capitol improvements and operating endowment.
In 2011, a major fundraising campaign was started to raise funds for the capital improvements, the operating endowment, and interim programming. Dedicated volunteers, organizations, businesses, and various stakeholders were apart of this process, contributing greatly.
In October 2015, the MRPB approved the renovation plans for the Phillips Community Center Aquatics Facility — construction will begin in 2016, bringing a new wave of excitement to the Phillips neighborhood and surrounding communities!