Help us shape the future of indoor recreation in Montpelier


About the Task Force

Work of the Jump&Splash Task Force

Task force members at a recent meeting at the library.

Task force members at a recent meeting at the library.

The Jump&Splash Task Force is a team of citizen volunteers seeking to fill recreational gaps,  foster community togetherness and enhance quality of life for Montpelier and the surrounding area. The task force aims to do this by launching an indoor recreational facility that will be a crossroads for health and fitness for users of all ages and abilities, providing flexible and diverse programming that will be accessible, affordable and sustainable. 

We are committed to involving the community at every step in the process, and to forging partnerships that will ensure long term financial viability so the facility can be a community resource for future generations.

Task Force Members


Chris Hancock.   Day Job: I have a software design and development business
Expertise: Education and human development; proposal-writing; business planning.
Perspective: Having recently taken up basketball, I appreciate our Rec Center on Barre St., and all the groups that use it. I’m happy to help make a pool happen if the community will is there; but my top priority is to ensure that existing services continue and are strengthened for the future. I intend to advocate for the value of recreation in sustaining our well-being as people and as a community.

Dot Helling.  Day job:  Retired attorney; volunteer; columnist in the Bridge.
Expertise:  Real estate law; networking skills. I spearheaded the public meeting that resulted in the formation of this task force.
Perspective: I feel strongly that Montpelier can support an indoor recreational facility with a pool and that our residents would benefit greatly from the fitness, health and socialization benefits that such a facility would engender.  It would be a draw to tourists and new residents and would benefit those of us who live, work and legislate here. I want a good lap pool and I want to work collaboratively with existing facilities to fill in gaps and create an overall Montpelier recreational opportunity that meets a variety of needs, particularly geared to creating indoor workout spaces for times of inclement weather. 


Gianna PetitoDay Job: 2017 Legislative Intern for the Vermont Natural Resources Council
Expertise:  Community outreach, group meeting facilitation, and grant writing.
Perspective: I really want to encourage this process to incorporate as much public involvement as possible. I believe that the more the community feels involved in the facility’s design, the more likely they are to support it and enjoy its use. I’m also a huge fan of capitalizing on shared resources so I expect to spend a lot of time speaking with other interested parties to learn how we can align our goals and work plans. Oh yea, and I’d LOVE to see Montpelier nurture a climbing community with a bouldering/rock wall if the public supports it. 

Emmanuel Riby-Williams. Day Job: Teacher, Montpelier Public Schools. 
Expertise:  Physical Educator, Soccer coach, Soccer official.
Perspective: I’m someone who is physically educated, and exhibits a physically active lifestyle and achieves and maintains a health-enhancing level of physical fitness. As a result, I’m very interested in teaching young people physical fitness, sports, and hygiene to promote a healthy lifestyle. My hope is to see a health-enhancing facility in Montpelier to encourage all young people to get fit, keep fit and stay fit. 

Karen SchwartzDay Job: Airbnb host; recently retired as Executive Director of the VT Developmental Disabilities Council.
Expertise: Advocacy; budgeting; public relations; grant writing and program administration.  I helped launch several organizations including the Johnson After-School Program and workplace unions.  
Perspective  As a long-time disability rights advocate, family member and senior I look forward to a welcoming place in Montpelier where all kinds of people can come together to experience health and wellness activities, especially aquatics.

Kelly Theroux. Day Job: Financial Analyst, Green Mountain Care Board; Head Coach, Central Vermont Swim Club.
Expertise: Swim coaching & competition; teaching swimming; budgeting, fundraising, planning
Perspective: As both a resident of Montpelier and swim coach for the local USA Swimming team and the Montpelier summer team for the last two years, I want to see a facility that includes a pool that will benefit all ages. Swimming is a lifelong sport that can save your life and the lives of others.


Sandy Vitzthum. Day Job:  Architect for State of Vermont Buildings & General Services
Expertise: Design, & programming; project development, facilitation
Perspective: Personally, I love swimming, yoga, sauna, and running. I enjoy helping the group with strategic planning as well as space program and business plan development.