Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Pool Parties at the White House

White House pool and cabana with solar panels on roof. Courtesy 20 Fun Facts about The White House)
Cherry Blossoms and their annual festival are over for 2009 in Washington DC. Memorial Day is over. At Sidwell Friends, the First daughters end of the school year trumpets summer vacation time. Picnics with the requisite amount of ants and tons of new and old friends to hang out with means making use of the water amenities at the White House. Pool perks extend to presidential vacation retreat at the very exclusive, yet relaxed and woodsy, Camp David as well. Because its outdoors and its been downright chilly and rainy during parts of the Spring in DC, one scene not captured on camera yet are the Obamas using the pool and cabana on the White House property.

Camp David pool outside Aspen Lodge - Main Lodge - during Nixon era - Photo courtesy White House
Not very far from the Oval Office on the West side of the property is the outdoor pool Gerald Ford put in after Richard Nixon paved over the indoor one FDR had installed and promptly splashed the national press corp into that space. Another daily swimmer, Barbara Bush, upgraded the poolhouse to a full cabana. Millie's son, the Bush's dog named Spot, was fond of chasing the tennis balls but was not a big splasher. Barbara Bush recounts seeing a rat up close and personal paddling by her face in the pool as she swam her morning laps. Let us just say Gary Walters, White House Chief Usher at the time, definitely got an earful on that incident. (Spot contemplating is the tennis ball worth it. Courtesy GHW Bush Library)

Pool parties are summer staples. A swim is very convenient after a tough set as its close to the tennis court as well. Like the famed and coveted sleepovers, it will be a big deal for the Obama girls to invite their friends over for a summer dip. From no pool, except the neighborhood one or at their school in Chicago, to having a pool at each presidential property is a kid's dream when its hot and humid. Add in the best ice cream sundae makers, an unlimited supply of root beer floats with a puppy learning to swim and the pool will be a scene of frivolity this summer.

Gerald Ford alongside his two golden Labradors bravely introduced his new outdoor pool to the press bare chested and in his bathing trunks. As president elect Barack Obama had that mouthwatering picture of him in Hawaii. President Nixon took Air Force One all the way back to San Clemente California to walk along the beach in his dressy wingtips. There was the picture of Hillary Clinton she despises of herself in a blue floral one piece bathing suit. Michelle Obama spent time in her one piece black maillot in Hawaii. Pool rules will need establishing as its been years since wee little ones lived full-time at 1600. There also seems to be a recurring theme with presidential dogs and pools. (President Ford swims laps in new outdoor pool for press. Courtesy Ford Library)

Solar power heats the pool with the latest installation during the Bush 43 presidency. Pool parties were a function of the buttoned up Bush era. With the pool being heated, Barbara Bush used the pool even when her hair froze with icicle drips. Bill Clinton gets the thanks for the whirlpool spa. Meanwhile the Obamas will have to decide how the supervision works at the pool and who will be lifeguard during the upcoming dog days of summer with two active girls who will willingly throw pool parties. Last one in is a ...


Post a Comment