BROKEN BOW—The Broken Bow Aquatic Center is ahead of schedule and will be opening Friday, June 12. Pool Manager Laurie French said the pool will be following state health measures amid COVID-19 and all patrons will need to sign a one-time Participant Agreement waiver (or have parent/legal guardian sign if patron is 17 years old or younger) before entering. (Click here for Monday’s story about pool office hours on Thursday for waivers and season passes.)
Patrons will also need to sign in upon arrival and sign out when leaving the pool. Season passes are available this year and normal pool hours will be Monday – Friday 12:30 – 5:00 p.m.; Adult Swim 5:00-6:30 p.m.; Night Swim 6:30-8:00 p.m.; and Saturday & Sunday 1:00-7:00 p.m.
French told KCNI/KBBN she has worked for the pool in some capacity since the year 2000, served as manager for the last five years, and has been training lifeguards since 2006.
“I keep thinking I’m not going to do it, I’m going to retire and I’m back! I just working with the kids and it’s just a passion I have,” French said.
Pool chairs will not be available and vending machines will be closed. However, patrons are able to bring their own chairs and can bring prepackaged snacks. Full-course meals are not permitted and all snacks need to be eaten in the roped off concession area. The water fountain will remain closed but patrons can bring their own water in plastic containers or purchase water from the office.
Six-foot social distancing guidelines will be enforced by an additional staff member so lifeguards can focus on pool safety. French said at this time, the staff of about 23 people hopes to run the pool as normal as possible and keep diving boards, slides, and lily pads open. However, she said those activities may look a little different and have to take things day-by-day.
Other health measures include the following:
• Everyone must take a warm shower with soap and water before entering into the pool.
• The facility will not have seating available. Patrons may bring in own chairs for personal use.
• Bathhouses and rest room areas will be disinfected regularly and every 2 hours.
• American Red Cross Swimming Lessons will be adjusted accordingly to meet health measure guidelines.
• These guidelines and measures may change at any given time.
• Open operating hours may change at any time.
French said she is confident in her staff and is excited for summer fun at the Broken Bow pool!
“I feel really good about where we’re at. We’ve just wrapped up our lifeguard training. We have a new crew of about nine new lifeguards. So we have about 11-12 guards returning. And it’s always very comforting to me to know we have lots of kids coming back,” French said. “We sure want to provide this to the community and to our kids. That’s what this place is all about so I’m hoping that you know we can kind of keep operations as normal as we can,” French added.
Call 308-872-5177 for more information.
Other Custer County pools are also planning to open for the 2020 season.
Ansley Swimming Pool 409 Nile Street: Village Clerk Lanette Doan told KCNI/KBBN the village board decided on Monday night to open the pool this summer. The pool needs to be filled and lifeguards need to be certified. Planning to open later in June.
Arnold Swimming Pool 200 S. Broadway: Village Clerk/Treasurer Patty Lamberty told KCNI/KBBN the Arnold pool will be opening later in June, hopefully between the 19th and 24th. Additional maintenance still needs to be done and the pool will follow the 25% occupancy guidelines and will be doing additional sanitizing.
Callaway Swimming Pool 301 E Pacific St: According to the Callaway Swimming Pool Facebook page, the pool opened on Wednesday, June 3. Pool hours will be from 1 to 8 p.m. every day with water aerobics at 12 p.m. and 5 p.m. The Facebook page also states that patrons’ temperatures will be taken before entering the pool. Concessions will not be available at this time but might be later this season.
A May 29 Facebook post reads, “The Swimming pool workers will be sanitizing the area on a regular basis as well as you will need to have temperature taken by the swimming pool staff before entering. As always, please used your common sense when using the swimming pool/bathhouse facilities and keep in mind the current Covid 19 guidelines while using. Thank you for your cooperation!”
Sargent Swimming Pool 103 S. Hwy 183: City Clerk/Treasurer Gwenda Horky told KCNI/KBBN the city of Sargent was not sure if the pool would open at this time due to not having enough lifeguards at this time.