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ME: Hi Curt and Katie! Welcome to Mom Squad’s Sunday Spotlight. This is a fun feature we hope to do every Sunday to profile our Mom Squaders. We believe everyone has a story, and it’s a neat way to help our readers get to know you better. I know you and Katie “tag-teamed” on these answers so they should be pretty funny! You and Katie are the owner of Splash School. Tell us about your business.
Curt: We provide private and semi-private (2 max kids) swim lessons at local hotel pools. By doing this we can offer lessons close to many peoples homes or jobs. With such small classes kids/adults can learn to swim much faster. We also offer CPR/AED/First Aid, Life Guard and Water Safety Instructor (WSI) classes.
ME: What made you come up with the idea of private/semi-private swim lessons as a business?
Curt: Beginning in 2001 I was teaching lessons at the YMCA and parents started asking for me to give their kids private lessons. In January 2009 I was getting so many requests I knew if I could provide good instructors people would want the classes.
ME: Our seven year-old Jake recently completed the Beginners Session with Splash School and loved it. Nicole was our instructor and she was awesome. What sort of training do your instructors need?
Curt: First off all my instructors must be Life Guard certified. I want to provide a safe swim experience. Second each instructor either goes through WSI certification class with me or works with me as a co-instructor until I feel comfortable having them teach for me. I also want them to take the next WSI class that is available.
ME: Where do you see Splash School in 5 years and what are some of your goals?
Curt: This is a fun question to answer because my goal is to have Splash School take off to the point where it becomes my sole business providing for our family. In order to do this I feel we need to expand nation wide. My initial goal for 2010 was to have 1 instructor. As of today we have 5! Do you know of any good Life Guards or Swim instructors who want to get in on the ground floor of an expanding business with a great boss?
ME: Where are the locations where SS classes are held?
Curt: Right now we have lessons offered at the Hawthorn Inn (Baxter), The Brainerd Hotel and Conference Center (formally Red Roof Inn), Cragun’s Resort (Brainerd), Pine Peaks Lodge (Crosslake), The 40 Club (Aitkin) and by the end of this year we are planning to expand to Duluth, Sartell, St. Cloud, Menomonie WI and James Town ND.
ME: You and your wife Katie have quite a large family. Like REALLY large family! Tell me a little about your kids.
Curt: It’s not that large! We know families with 18 kids and the Duggar’s have what 19 and counting. My wife made me write that last sentence. OK our kids, first off I need to say our kids are home schooled. Jordan our oldest is 18 and will start college this fall, Jeremiah 16 will be doing PSEO at CLC this fall. Kaylee 15 and Beka 13 will be playing volley ball at Lake Region Christian School, Rachel 12 and Abby 9 LOVE gymnastics so much we take them to St. Cloud 3 days a week to North Crest, then we have 5 little boys Anders 8, Isaiah 6, Leif 4, Levi 3 and Bo almost 2. My wife says isn’t that a run on sentence? Don’t you love having an English, Math, Social Studies, etc… teacher sitting next to you while you’re typing?
ME: Anything else you’d like to share about your life? Hobbies? Pet peeves? Critters?
Curt: Katie says NO! But I’ll tell you a little. We have 26 chickens (got to love those organic eggs), Katie has to be doing something at all times so she loves cross stitch, crocheting, sewing, cross word puzzles… I don’t have a lot of extra time with a full time job, part time business and 11 kids. I’m feeling really dumb stating that right now. I did start up golf a little this summer with some of the kids. I’m going to be participating in the Lakes Area Pregnancy Support Center’s golf fundraiser so if you would like to donate give me a call.
ME: If you could do anything in the world (job wise) and money was no object, what would you do?
Curt: I would quit my full time job, continue expanding my swim school world wide and bring the family with as I train instructors. Kate would quit cooking and cleaning and focus on home schooling and start farming in Montana.
ME: I feel very comfortable and curious asking you this. As the parent of 11 kids, what’s the best piece of advice you can give to other parents?
Curt: Kate says Discipline is key. We both say don’t say “I could never do that”. God gives you the strength, time, love, patience, and money to do it.
ME: Hamburgers? Or salads?
Curt: Kate says Lamb burger with pesto and feta cheese. I say Beef it’s what’s for dinner. I do love a good chef salad though.
ME: What advice can you give to any new business person starting out.
Curt: Watch for successful business owners and don’t be afraid to ask them questions. Surround yourself with people who encourage your vision.
ME: If you could change anything about yourself, what would it be?
Curt: I would love to lose weight and gain patience.
ME: Anything you’d like to add?
Curt: Nope. It’s 10:15 P.M. and the alarm goes off at 4:00 A. M.
ME: What’s SS website addy again?
Curt: Splash School USA (even the name says were going National)
ME: OH Yeah, for everyone reading don’t forget Splash School has an awesome coupon in our Edition 5 Coupon Packs! Watch for those at Discover Racks AND these locations
Thanks Curt & Katie!!