Grand Opening celebration to take place on Saturday, October 13.
Melville, NY - October 10, 2018 - Contrary to general opinion, the number thirteen can indeed be a lucky number…especially when it comes to Saf-T-Swim, Long Island’s top swimming school, which is celebrating the Grand Opening of their new Melville location at 515 Broadhollow Road this Saturday, October 13. The location marks the thirteenth Saf-T-Swim facility opened by owner Jim Hazen, who has made it his mission in life to make the waves a safer place for kids of all ages.
“One of the leading causes of death of children under 5 years-old in this country is accidental drowning, and I think parents are becoming more and more aware of this,” he said. “Especially here on Long Island, with all of the water that we’re surrounded with, in addition to all of the pools and the lakes…knowing how to swim at any age is vital.”
The Melville Saf-T-Swim boasts a swimming pool 22 feet wide and 57 feet in length, raging in depth from 3 feet to just under 5. Photo Credit: Chris Boyle
Saf-T-Swim is a swimming school that caters to youngsters, but also welcomes anyone – young, old, and in-between – who is looking to learn the skills needed to stay safe when in the water. Hazen, a Miller Place resident with a background in lifeguarding and athletics, founded the first Saf-T-Swim location in 1984 in Bay Shore, and after some early initial success, the business steadily grew into what it is today- Long Island’s premiere swimming school, with locations in Bellmore, East Meadow, Levittown, Westbury, Bohemia, Commack, Deer Park, Riverhead, and more.
“Actually, I always thought I would have just one location…we figured we would be able to teach enough kids to be able to start a college fund for my children and save a few lives while we were at it,” Hazen said. “But there was a demand out there that needed to be satisfied, so we just ran with it.”
Saf-T-Swim, Long Island’s top swimming school, is celebrating the Grand Opening of their new Melville location at 515 Broadhollow Road. Photo Credit: Chris Boyle
For a full list of Saf-T-Swim locations, please click here.
When it came to opening his 13th Saf-T-Swim location in Melville – which will be holding its Grand Opening celebration this Saturday, October 13th, with a rain date of October 14th – Hazen said he typically doesn’t look to expand his watery empire at any given time, but when the opportunity presents itself, he's more than ready to do so if he feels it will benefit the members of the surrounding community.
“At the moment we have Long Island pretty well covered, but I wait for opportunities to come and if I like the area I go for it, especially if I feel like it's an area that's in need,” he said. “I chose this location here in Melville because I felt the parking was very good, I like the proximity of the Route 110 corridor, the landlord was extremely generous and welcoming, and I think this is going to be a great fit with the Melville community.”
Saf-T-Swim features rooms with one-way mirrors where parents can watch their children while receiving their lessons. Photo Credit: Chris Boyle
Once the location was chosen, Hazen noted that the least fun aspect of opening a new location came into being- dealing with the bureaucracy and red tape generally involved in establishing any new business. However, like a trooper, he got through the process while strictly adhering to all the rules and safety guidelines put forth both by the Town of Huntington and the Board of Health, in many cases exceeding them.
Saf-T-Swim has infant classes, starting for kids as young as two months old, and goes all the way up to adult classes. Photo Credit: Chris Boyle
In addition, Hazen said, the Melville Saf-T-Swim represents something of a change to the normal formula he follows when establishing a new location. Previous Saf-T-Swims are equipped with standard locker rooms, but Melville eschews this time-honored approach in favor of a more modern-day sensibility- individual, private changing rooms.
“We have 18 co-ed changing rooms now, and a lot of it is due to the gender issues that have come along in the last 4 or 5 years. This way, children can be alone in their own individual changing rooms and have privacy,” he said. “Our other locations currently have locker rooms, but as we do repairs and renovations over time we will probably start adding changing rooms to those locations as well. It's something that seems to be popular with both parents and children.”
Saf-T-Swim of Melville features private, co-ed changing rooms. Photo Credit: Chris Boyle
The Melville Saf-T-Swim boasts a swimming pool 22 feet wide and 57 feet in length, raging in depth from 3 feet to just under 5; an ideal setup for anyone looking to learn their proper swimming strokes. While classes are specialized with teaching the younger set, anyone looking to learn how to swim are welcome to come down and experience all that Saf-T-Swim has to offer.
“We have infant classes, starting for kids as young as two months old, and we go all the way up to adult classes. The beauty of our program is that, for the most part, we are one-on-one instruction, so the student learns at their own individual pace,” he said. “All of our instructors are highly-trained and we always have at least one certified lifeguard on deck at all times, so safety is a top priority.”
Saf-T-Swim can host birthday parties on the weekends in a large party room that can be tailored for any occasion. Photo Credit: Chris Boyle
However, Saf-T-Swim isn't just about learning your water basics; it's also about having fun with your friends. The facility can host birthday parties on the weekends in a large party room that can be tailored for any occasion, in addition to private access to the pool for all partygoers.
Melville’s Grand Opening celebration on October 13th promises to be a fun and exciting family event, with Hazen noting that a ribbon-cutting will be held at 10:30 a.m., followed by festivities including an ice cream truck, an inflatable bounce house, a petting zoo, and music provided by a local radio station D.J.
Saf-T-Swim of Melville features excellent parking and close proximity to the Route 110 corridor. Photo Credit: Chris Boyle
“It's going to be a really nice, exciting day, and we invite the community to come on down and join in with us,” Hazen said. “We're going to have all these different specials running for our current customers, including referrals if they bring their friends. It's going to be a really nice day.”