With cruel timing, two of the city’s public swimming pools are out of commission as a hot weekend approaches.
This week, workers tried to fill Quackenbush Pool, only to discover a pump was broken. Then it turned out that pump could only be acquired by special order — and it will take at least 10 days to arrive.
So workers turned to the Central Park pool, trying to quickly open it before the temperature hits 90 this weekend. No dice; a valve that controls the water flow broke.
Workers spent the day trying to fix it. If they don’t succeed in time for the pool to be inspected today by the county Department of Health, it can’t be opened this weekend.
There is some good news: Hillhurst Pool and the Front Street pool are open. And although Hillhurst Pool normally closes each weekend, it will be open Saturday to make up for the closing of Quackenbush Pool. Workers are trying to get the Central Park pool open by Saturday, too.
“We’re trying to hustle,” park groundskeeping supervisor William Macejka said.
Admission to the Central Park and Hillhurst pools are free, while the Front Street pool requires a fee. The Front Street pool will be open daily from noon to 7 p.m., while Hillhurst Pool will normally be open weekdays from noon to 6 p.m., though it will also be open Saturday from noon to 5 p.m.
When the Quackenbush and Central Park pools open, the Boys and Girls Clubs of Schenectady will offer swim lessons in the mornings, before the pools open to the public at noon. Anyone can sign up for lessons at the Quackenbush pool, but only members of the Schenectady County City Outreach in Recreation and Education summer camp will have lessons at the Central Park pool.
The Boys and Girls Clubs will also run family swim nights on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at Quackenbush Pool.
The YWCA runs the Front Street pool, while the Boys and Girls Clubs run the other three. That’s new; last year, the Boys and Girls Clubs only ran two pools. City officials asked them this year to run Central Park as well because of their successful disciplinary program.
Swimmers who misbehave are banned from all city pools, so they can no longer simple walk to another pool and jump in. The Boys and Girls Clubs also require all swimmers to have IDs, which are created on-site by the county Sheriff’s Department.