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Four City of Buffalo swimming pools open for the summer

Young kids take the first plunge into Centennial poll in the City of Buffalo
Thomas O'Neil-White
/
WBFO News
Young kids take the first plunge into Centennial poll in the City of Buffalo

The pool season kicked off Monday in the City of Buffalo. Four swimming pools (Riverside, Centennial, John F. Kennedy and Kensington) are now open and a fifth (Houghton outdoor) is slated to open next Monday.

Buffalo, like the rest of the country, had difficulty recruiting lifeguards post-pandemic, which caused several city pools to remain closed until enough lifeguards could be hired.

A year-long recruitment process has the city near it’s goal of 80 lifeguards for the summer said City of Buffalo Public Works Commissioner Nate Marton.

“That recruitment program that we've had in place, that the mayor has pushed since the pandemic ended,” he said of the program that reached out to recruitment many Buffalo Public School students. “But really trying to get that lifeguard tally back up to where it was pre-pandemic. So, we've been successful with that.”

Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown with Public Works Commissioner Nate Marton (Left) and Deputy Parks and Recreations Commissioner Andy Rabb (right) at Centennial Pool on the city's west side.
Thomas O'Neil-White
/
WBFO News
Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown with Public Works Commissioner Nate Marton (Left) and Deputy Parks and Recreations Commissioner Andy Rabb (right) at Centennial Pool on the city's west side.

Lifeguards earn $20 per hour.

Parks Commissioner Andy Rabb said the pools and splash pads throughout the city are safer alternatives for staying cool in these summer months.

“We do ask that people utilize our pools,” he said. “Our pools are a safer place to swim than bodies of water that don't have lifeguards in it. So, the converse of that is, please do not swim where we don't have lifeguards on duty during the hot days, come to our pools instead. They're well maintained and they're safe the we do ask that people who bring young children, if you're under 48 inches tall or under four feet tall, we ask that those kids are accompanied by an adult, two kids per adult. That's for their safety. And other than that, we just hope that people come by relax.”

Pools open each morning at 11 o’clock and close at 7. Lifeguards also give free, informal swim lessons early in the day.

Born in Louisville, Kentucky, Thomas moved to Western New York at the age of 14. A graduate of Buffalo State College, he majored in Communications Studies and was part of the sports staff for WBNY. When not following his beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats and Boston Red Sox, Thomas enjoys coaching youth basketball, reading Tolkien novels and seeing live music.