More swimmers permitted when Pickerington pool opens May 29

Nate Ellis
ThisWeek group
Laura Shank of Pickerington swims with her sons, Henry and Oliver, last year at the Pickerington Community Pool. Attendance will be 300 per session this year after being limited to 125 a year ago.

When the Pickerington Community Pool opens May 29, 300 swimmers will be allowed during each of its three-hour blocks of time. 

A year ago, 125 swimmers that were allowed each session as city officials restricted access to maintain in-water social distancing in the wake of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. 

Pickerington Parks and Recreation Director Becca Medinger said both last year and this year, the city is abiding by orders from Gov. Mike DeWine, as well as the Ohio and Fairfield County health departments. 

"Last year, the guidelines were at 25% capacity," said Becca Medinger, parks and recreation director. "This year, there is no max on the capacity for outdoor pools."

Despite lifting pool attendance restrictions, Medinger said people still will be asked to stay in groups of no more than 10 and to maintain at least six feet of distance between other patrons. 

Time slots to be offered will be 11 a.m.-2 p.m., 2:15-5:15 p.m. and 6-9 p.m.

Day passes will be $8 per person, with children 2 and younger getting in free. 

Evening time slots June 7-19, June 21-July 2 and July 5-16 that are reduced to 7-9 p.m. due to swim lessons, will cost $5 per person. 

Season passes for city residents will range from $90 for an individual to $300 for a family of six or more. 

All pass sales and time reservations must be completed through the city's website at ci.pickerington.oh.us/departments/parks-recreation/community-pool/

"Season-pass holders can reserve a time slot beginning a day in advance at 7 a.m.," the city's website states. "Any remaining slots not reserved by season pass holders will become available for day pass purchases at 7 a.m. for same-day day passes. 

"Season pass holders can register for multiple time slots on a given day, but cannot stay between sessions to allow for staff cleaning. Failure to utilize time slots can result in loss of pre-reservation privileges."

According to information provided by the parks and rec department last year, the pool averaged 203 swimmers per day through Aug. 16. In 2019, the daily average was 377.

Last year, the city also removed furniture from the pool deck, but Medinger said this year a "limited number" of lounge chairs and picnic tables with cleaning stations will be available. 

"We strongly advise patrons to follow all guidelines in place, which include wearing masks when they are not in the pool and cannot keep six feet social distance or in tight areas such as the entry and restroom areas," she said.

The pool season will run through Labor Day, Sept. 6; however, the pool will be open weekends only once school resumes Aug. 16. 

"In addition to offering open swim options, our goal was to bring back some of the items we were unable to offer last year, such as swim lessons, special events and a place for the Tiger Sharks Swim Team to use the pool," Medinger said.

"It is important to the city that we are able to hire several seasonal positions for the pool, comply with guidelines, but more importantly provide a desired service to the Pickerington community."

Medinger said the department plans to offer several summer programs, including Friday Night Flicks, Summer and Concert Series.

Information about those programs and other events planned for the summer can be found at ci.pickerington.oh.us/departments/parks-recreation/special-events/.

nellis@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekNate