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The List: Community Pools Plans for the 2020 Summer Season

Susan Post Susan Post The List: Community Pools Plans for the 2020 Summer SeasonThe Grandview Heights Municipal Pool is one of several community pools closed for he 2020 season - Photo by Walker Evans
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Memorial Day typically signifies the start of pool season, but as with practically everything else – things will be different this summer.

Public pools were officially allowed to re-open Tuesday, May 26. Some community pools have already announced they will be closed for the season, while others have yet to make a decision. Those that do open for the summer will be adhering to guidelines as laid out by the state, which include mandates like no gathering in groups of different households, reduced capacity to maintain social distancing (in all areas of the pool) and limiting the number of pool goers in restrooms and shower facilities at any one time.

Here’s a rundown of the latest news from community pools around Central Ohio. Check back for updates as more neighborhoods make official announcements.


Closed for the 2020 Season

Bexely’s David H. Madison Community Pool will not welcome swimmers for summer 2020. The city made the decision to keep the pool closed on May 27. Mayor Ben Kessler said, “We have thought through all of the different variations of how to open the pool…We have a responsibility to our residents, and we believe that we are best exercising that responsibility by forgoing the pool opening this season.”

For more information, visit bexley.org/pool.

Canal Winchester

Closed for the 2020 Season

The Canal Winchester Municipal Pool will remain closed for the 2020 season. An announcement on the city’s website from May 22 said the new guidelines under which pools could open for the season “pose numerous unavoidable practical challenges” that would severely impact the public’s enjoyment of the pool.

For more information, visit canalwinchesterohio.gov.

City of Columbus

Decision Not Yet Made

The City of Columbus has not yet made a decision on opening its eight public outdoor pools for the 2020 season. In its Summer 2020 Plan, the Columbus Recreation and Parks Department said, “In reviewing guidelines released from the Ohio Department of Health, the department is thoughtfully evaluating options for pools and aquatics programming. The safety of participants, residents and staff remains our top priority. The decision to open pools and continue aquatics programming will be based on guidance from Columbus Public Health.”

For more information, visit columbus.gov/RecParksCOVID19.


Opening No Sooner than July 1 with Restrictions

Dublin’s Pool South and Indoor Lap Pool are slated to re-open no sooner than July 1. The Dublin Community Pool North remains closed for planned renovations.

The pool experience will be markedly different than in years past, accessible only through day passes or by signing up for a pre-determined window of time. Pool goers will have access in 90-minute time blocks limited to 115 people each with closures in between for cleaning and disinfecting.

For more information, visit dublinohiousa.gov.


Closed for the 2020 Season

The City of Gahanna will not open its two public pools – the Gahanna Swimming Pool and Hunter’s Ridge Pool – during summer 2020. In a press released issued on May 29, the city said, “We regrettably have not found a path forward that would enable us to operate our swimming pools in a manner that would ensure the health and safety of our guests and staff while providing an enjoyable experience for swimmers and their families.”

For more information, visit gahanna.gov.


Closed for the 2020 Season

Mayor Greta M. Kearns announced on May 2 the Grandview Heights Pool would be closed for the 2020 season. Swim lessons are also canceled. Kearns said, “Social distancing will be with us a long time, and at a basic level, we have to recognize that social distancing is incompatible with the operation of a public pool.”

For more information, visit grandviewheights.org.

Grove City

Closed for the 2020 Season

As of June 8, Grove City has announced that The Big Splash will be closed for the 2020 season with a target re-opening date of May 29, 2021.

For more information, visit grovecityohio.gov.


Closed for the 2020 Season

The city of Groveport made the decision on May 26 to not open Groveport Aquatic Center for the season. The city is following the recommendations of Franklin County Health Commissioner Joe Mazzola who advised pools not to open this year.

For more information, visit groveportrec.com.


Closed for the 2020 Season

The city of Hilliard announced on April 27 its pools and splash pads would not open this summer due to concerns over the coronavirus. City Manager Michelle Crandall says that a shortened or modified season didn’t make sense because of significant fixed costs associated with preparing pools to open for the summer season. The closure impacts two pools – the Hilliard Family Aquatic Center and Clyde “Butch” Seidle Community Pool.

For more information, visit hilliardohio.gov.

New Albany

Closed for the 2020 Season

On May 28, the Plain Township Board of Trustees (which encompasses New Albany) made the decision not to open the Plain Township Aquatic Center for summer 2020. Township Administrator Ben Collins said, “We have not found a path forward for operating the Plain Township swimming pool that would ensure the health and safety of our guests and staff while operating the pool in a manner that would provide an enjoyable experience for swimmers and their families.”

For more information, visit plaintownship.org.


Closed for the 2020 Season

The Powell Pool will remain closed for the 2020 season. Safety, financial implications and the overall swimming experience were the main factors in the OSA Board of Trustees’ decision to keep the pool closed.

For more information, visit powellpool.com.

Upper Arlington

Tremont Pool Opens June 12 / Devon Pool Opens June 15

The City of Upper Arlington plans to open two of its pools for the summer 2020 season. The Tremont Pool opens June 12 and the Devon Pool opens June 15. The Reed Road Water Park will not open in 2020.

The pools will be operating on a modified schedule comprised of two-hour sessions for up to 100 patrons per pool per session, with a 30-minute disinfection period between sessions. Reservations and pre-payment must be made online in advance, and are available at noon seven days in advance.

For more information, visit upperarlingtonoh.gov.


Closed for the 2020 Season

On the recommendation from Franklin County Public Health, Westerville will not open its Highlands Park Aquatic Center for the 2020 season. The Westerville Community Center indoor pool is also closed until further notice. The city says that administrators determined a shortened season would not make sense for operations based on pool preparation, staff hiring and training requirements.

For more information, visit parks.westerville.org.


Closed for the 2020 Season

On May 19, the City of Worthington made the decision to keep its pools closed for the 2020 season. In a letter to the community, Board of Directors President Michael Keller estimated social distancing would escalate operating costs while reducing capacity by as much as 50%. Worthington Pools manages three outdoor pools, one indoor pool, and The Lagoon splashpad.

For more information, visit worthingtonpools.com.

Zoombezi Bay

Opens for Gold Members June 19-21, followed by all guests June 22

Zoombezi Bay has announced dates for its 2020 opening. All Zoombezi Bay visits will now require a dated, timed ticket, including all Season Pass Holders and Gold Members. Guests can begin making advance reservations starting on Tuesday, June 9. Additional details about procedures will be announced on that date as well. The park is expanding its operating season, remaining open through September 7.

For more information, visit zoombezibay.columbuszoo.org.

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