Anderson Mill’s Dive World Austin teaches scuba diving to hobbyists of all levels

Dive World Austin
Seth and Traci Wallace bought Northwest Austin legacy business Dive World in 2018 and expanded its footprint with a new storefront. (Iain Oldman/Community Impact Newspaper)

Seth and Traci Wallace bought Northwest Austin legacy business Dive World in 2018 and expanded its footprint with a new storefront. (Iain Oldman/Community Impact Newspaper)

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Dive World Austin offers several class options for beginners looking to get into scuba diving, including an Open Water Certification course. (Designed by Mel Stefka/Community Impact Newspaper)
After decades of existence under only two owners, Northwest Austin legacy business Dive World Austin in 2018 assumed new leadership under locals Seth and Traci Wallace. Not long after the married couple moved in, they expanded the diving center into the space next door.

With the additional room, the Wallaces added a retail side to Dive World’s offerings. Divers can now visit the store for a one-stop-shop for masks, spearfishing guns, buoyancy compensators and more. The expansion has also allowed the owners to convert the old shop into a community area for students and instructors alike.

“People tend to linger around dive stores. It’s kind of a thing,” Seth said. “People come in, they want to talk about all their diving stuff. We really wanted to embrace that and encourage it.”

Since taking over more than two years ago, the Wallaces said they have decided to make community investment one of Dive World’s focal points. The scuba shop hosts and trains local Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops, even setting up an underwater Girl Scout cookie stand in Dive World’s indoor pool.

Dive World has also made a commitment to conservation in its store. The Wallaces now own the only Professional Association of Diving Instructors Green Star-certified diving store in Texas after the couple invested in environmentally sound operations, such as using repurposed water and eco-friendly cleaning chemicals.


The scuba shop additionally partners with other dive shops in the Austin area every year to help clean up parts of Lake Travis. During the most recent cleanup effort, Seth said the dive shops had three barges full of local divers picking up trash off the bottom of Lake Travis at Devil’s Cove.

“All divers pretty much are, by definition, conservation-minded to some extent,” Seth said. “Once you’re out in the ocean, you see the amazing majesty and the beauty of diving on a coral reef and the abundance of life that’s so unique to a coral reef, you just realize it’s special and something that needs to be preserved.”

While the scuba diving store was forced to close for a few months at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, the Wallaces say they are now up and running with a full course load and special events, such as underwater pumpkin carving. The break allowed Dive World time to push a lot of its instructional materials online, allowing for prospective students to do work from home on their own schedule.

Dive World offers a full lineup of instructional classes for scuba diving, ranging from discovery and open water certification classes for beginners to professional certifications for advanced divers, including rescue diving and instructor training.

“We’ve got a great instructional staff. They care a lot about their students, and keeping our class sizes small is really important to us so that everybody gets more focused attention,” Traci said.

Dive World Austin

12129 N. RM 620, Ste. 440, Austin

512-219-1220

www.diveworldaustin.com

Hours: Mon.-Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
By Iain Oldman
Iain Oldman joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2017 after spending two years in Pittsburgh, Pa., where he covered Pittsburgh City Council. His byline has appeared in PublicSource, WESA-FM and Scranton-Times Tribune. Iain worked as the reporter for Community Impact Newspaper's flagship Round Rock/Pflugerville/Hutto edition and is now working as the editor for the Northwest Austin edition.


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