Each month, we enjoy learning more about a member of the Thursday Pools dealer family for our dealer spotlight. In March, we chatted with Jason Cherry, who owns Cherry Pools in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma with his wife Gloria. They exclusively sell Thursday Pools fiberglass pools.
Located southeast of Tulsa, Cherry Pools serves communities within a 60 to 90 mile radius, including: Sapulpa, Sand Springs, Owasso, Pryor, Tahlequah, Muskogee, Okmulgee, Bartlesville, Vinita, Siloam Springs and Fayetteville.
Tell us a little about yourself and your business.
My wife and I started this business in the summer of 2017 with nothing. We literally walked into our local bank with a hundred dollar bill and said, “We want to start a business.” And we did. I had been in the pool business since 1997, and I just really wanted something of my own. Also, I saw a niche.
As I looked at the other businesses, they were all competing on price. There were a bunch of guys fighting over the bottom 70 percent. I didn’t want to jump into that fray. We decided we would just be the best. The best fiberglass pool shell, the best components, the best systems, and the best installation practices. That’s our niche. We’re not apologetic about the fact that we’re the highest-end fiberglass pool dealer around here.
What do you love about being in the pool business?
When you buy a car and decide you don’t like it a few years down the road, you just trade it in. Pools are different. They’re personal, and they’re permanent. It’s a big decision, and it’s important to folks to make the right choice. It’s a big deal for them. The kids are excited. The parents are excited. It’s really fun to go through the process with them and bring it all to life. We educate them about pool buying and pool ownership. We answer questions they haven’t even thought to ask yet. And when it’s all done, it’s a real sense of accomplishment.
Which Thursday Pools fiberglass pool designs and colors are the most popular among your pool buyers in the Tulsa area?
You know, we sell almost all the designs. I guess our most popular are Lil Bob LX, Wellspring, Sun Day, Aspen, Sea Turtle and Goliath. Thursday Pools pretty much has something for every family. As far as colors go, we typically only use the lightest ones, like Caribbean Sparkle or Sandstone, because they keep the water cooler. It’s hot here!
What are the most popular add-on features in the fiberglass inground pools you’re installing right now?
All our pools have some kind of water feature. Water features keep the water circulating, which increases evaporation and keeps the water cooler. All of our pools are automated. And all of our installations include stamped, colored, sealed concrete, artisan handrails and 30-watt, multi-colored lights. I know in a lot of places, automatic pool safety covers are a big thing, but out here, they hold too much heat in the pool– our biggest challenge is keeping pools cool!
What do you think about Thursday Pools’ new beach entry fiberglass pool designs?
Oh, I think they’re fantastic. We’ve had several customers ask about them. We showed it off at the home show and people flipped. We haven’t sold one yet, but we might this year. We have a couple of new-build projects that they would work well with.
What do you think about the new Thursday Pools’ sunken living room designs?
They’re great! I’ll definitely sell them. That super high-end kind of pool experience will fit right in with my customers. I think it’s going to be big.
What particular challenges do you face with fiberglass pool installations in your part of the country?
Rain, rain, rain. The water table is already really high here, and it just keeps raining. People really have to keep an eye on their water levels in their pools to make sure they’re equalizing their groundwater pressure. But here’s what makes me feel more comfortable about that–the Thursday Pools Fiberglass Pool Anchoring System™. I can sleep at night knowing that the fiberglass pools I install are warrantied against them coming out of the ground. Thursday Pools is the only fiberglass pool company that does that. So, what I can do is sell people a fiberglass pool and all the good stuff that comes along with that, like lower pool maintenance and no liner replacement or replastering. They’ll also get the custom look of gunite, without ever having to worry about the things a customer calling to say their pool popped out of the ground. It just doesn’t happen. I have a zero percent failure rate. That feels really good.
What’s the cost of an average pool installation for you?
Well, like I said, we don’t offer “good, better, best.” We just offer “best.” So, there may be some fiberglass pool projects around here that are coming in around the $25,000 mark. Our pools are $55,000- $65,000. And when someone says, “Hey. Your quote is $20,000 more than the other guy, I say, “Yep. It had better be! Want me to tell you why?” And they’re usually pretty happy with their price in the end. Because I help them see how much they’re going to save over time with a really good quality fiberglass pool. It’s totally worth the upfront investment.
What have you noticed changing in pool buyers’ demographics over the years?
It hasn’t really changed. It’s still folks in their 30s, 40s and 50s who have decided they’re staying put. They want to invest in their homes and have a cool place to hang out because they’re in it for the long haul.
What works for you in terms of marketing?
We don’t do a ton of marketing. Gloria does the website, and we work hard to keep that up. We do the home shows. But word of mouth is our best advertising.
What are your thoughts on Thursday Pools?
Well, I think the fact that I don’t sell anything else kind of says it all. We’re 100 percent committed to Thursday Pools. The fact that they’re ISO 9001 certified means that they have a checks and balances system for maintaining quality that no one else has. I’m having pools shipped from almost 700 miles away. I could save some money on shipping by getting them from somewhere closer. I’m not going to do that. It makes my cost higher, but it’s worth it. I’m putting my name behind these pools, and it’s a small town! The quality is everything to me. Also, when they say Thursday Pools is a family, they’re not just talking … you can’t really even understand how much that means until you experience it.
What’s the secret to Cherry Pools’ success?
We try to think of everything. We do things in our installations that other pool builders don’t, like heating the plumbing pipes and bending them for better water flow. We have a unique combination of equipment, hydraulics and automation that ends up saving our customers thousands of dollars in electricity over the years. Most pool installations have about $1200 worth of equipment in them–ours have almost $12,000. The details matter. We don’t take any shortcuts.
Cherry Pools is a family-owned business. They take pride in installing only Thursday Pools fiberglass pools throughout the Tulsa, Oklahoma area. Jason and Gloria Cherry run the business, along with four full-time, year-round employees (and a little help from their kids, Winter, Bristol and Spencer.)
Located in central Indiana, Thursday Pools manufactures the highest quality inground fiberglass pools. They are leaders in innovation in the fiberglass pool industry and are the creators of the world’s first beach entry (zero entry) fiberglass pool, as well as the world’s first sunken living room fiberglass pool designs, coming in 2020.