Isaish Trecinski, of West
Bend works on kicking as his father, Chad, holds him
during the learn to swim program June 25, 2015, at the
West Bend high schools’ pool in West Bend.
A sign flashes in the front window of A-1
Pools in West Bend: “Open.”
Swimming outdoors this time of the year isn’t
recommended. That doesn’t mean swimming pool business
owners like Dale Miller, owner of A-1 Pools in West
Bend, take it easy.
“We’re starting to order our supplies in,” Miller said.
“We do a lot of work in the busy months in the year.”
the slow months — typically once fall hits — swimming
pool stores begin to focus on next year. Business does
slow down, but doesn’t stop.
the swimming pool business, the season starts to pick up
right around tax refund season — late March or early
April. Then it’s full-go in May, June and July.
“May is like our December,” Miller said. “That’s our
What keeps businesses such as Miller’s afloat in the
offseason is that’s usually a time when people will buy
items for a pool or a hot tub, including accessories and
toys. They’ll also service hot tubs and indoor pools.
tub sales, Miller said, are typically consistent
throughout the year. It is not unusual for customers to
buy the pools in the winter or at least make down
payments on them.
“People will start planning ahead for spring,” Miller
said. “Some people give a gift of a hot tub for
Thursday afternoon, soft music played and only one
customer came in during an approximately 30-minute
stretch — to pick up something that was ordered.
Miller said it doesn’t get lonely in the store: “There’s
always something to do” He opened A-1 Pools in 1979. Its
present- day location, 1168 N. Main St., opened in 1988.
There’s also a New Berlin location on West National
Outside of maybe one year since 1979, sales have been
consistent, even as more municipalities look at
different water entertainment options such as splash
pads or interactive pools.
“Even when the economy went bad, we were still able to
maintain our business well,” Miller said. He added that
what hurts his business is when there is more
development for apartment complexes rather than houses.
just because it’s cold outside, doesn’t mean it’s the
wrong time to install a pool, a hot tub or both.
“They’ve got to check with the local village or city to
see what the ordinances are,” Miller said when asked
what are some tips potential customers should start
considering if they want to put in a pool in the spring.
“Some lots have plenty of room for a pool. Some lots you
can’t put a pool on. They’ve got to watch for overhead
utilities, underground utilities.”
all those things are fine, there’s not too much stopping
you from getting a pool,” Miller said.
Well, there could be one thing: money. On average, an
above-ground pool can cost anywhere between $5,000 to
an in-ground pool is desired, the prices there vary
greatly. Miller said, typically, the minimum to expect
to spend on such an investment is about $30,000.
why does someone get into a swimming pool business,
especially in a region of the U.S. that enjoys maybe
five or six months of good “swimming” weather?
Miller started in construction out of high school,
worked at a fencing business and later managed a
“After managing a restaurant and being inside a building
all the time, I knew I liked outside work,” Miller said.
“I enjoyed being outdoors.”
eventually got into a fencing business for himself. At
the same time, he got into selling hot tubs “because
it’d be some income in the winter months and that work
kind of led me into the pool business.
don’t think it’s a tough business,” he added. “The tough
part is everything comes at one time. But I think all
businesses have a season, whether its lawn mowers or