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Making a splash

Open for a week, the WC?municipal pool has yet to reach capacity of 108 swimmers

— Daily Freeman-Journal photo by Anne Blankenship There was a small group of swimmers Monday afternoon at the Webster City Outdoor Pool. Since the pool opened last week, officials say the daily census has fluctuated between 17 and 96 swimmers. They have yet to reach the social distancing capacity of 108 swimmers.

By ANNE BLANKENSHIP

ablankenship@freemanjournal.net

It’s been a week since the Webster City Municipal Swimming Pool opened for the season and officials said the week has had some perfect conditions for a dip in the pool.

However the pool has yet to meet the capacity set by the city as part of the social distancing measures established when the facility opened.

Larry Flaws, director of recreation and public grounds for the city, said the daily census has seen a low of 17 swimmers and a high of 93 in the first week of operation.

“We still haven’t hit that 108 capacity,” he said.

The City Council of Webster City voted to open the pool on June 23, utilizing a plan that called for a maximum of 108 swimmers per session. Swimmers must arrive “pool ready” as limited locker room facilities were available. All deck chairs and loungers have been removed from around the pool, and the concession stand area is not open this summer. Swimmers can buy bottled water at the front desk.

As the swimmers enter the pool, temperatures are checked, and families must have submitted a signed waiver in order to use the pool.

During breaks, lifeguards help sanitize the areas of frequent touching, like the railings around the pool. The lifeguards all wear masks unless they are sitting in the high chairs overlooking the pool, he said.

Also off limits are the water slide and the diving boards, though swimmers can still use the deep-end of the pool to practice diving from the pool deck, Flaws said.

During the morning hours, the pool is open for private swim lessons with the lifeguards. Flaws said there is a list of guards offering lessons and families can make their own arrangements for the instruction.

At 11 a.m., adult lap swimmers are able to use the pool. Flaws said there are about 5 or 6 regulars who swim laps at that time.

After the lap swimmers, the staff gets the pool ready for the afternoon session of open swimming. Flaws said he has about 28 people working at the pool this summer.

“It’s going well. We haven’t had any problems so far. The weather has been great. The water is at 80 degrees and everyone who comes out seems to be enjoying themselves,” he said.

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