We have some good news to share regarding the Sunflower swimming pools.
At last night’s board meeting, the pool task force submitted a detailed report regarding opening the Hanford swimming pool. And the Board voted unanimously to accept the recommendation of the task force. BUT due to the current environment, several new procedures and processes must be implemented. Your pool experience will be very different from other years, but it will resemble the experience you would have at any of our neighboring pools. It should be noted that not every area pool will be opening. Many condo and apartment complexes have elected to not reopen their pools, and some of our neighboring communities are only opening one of their multiple pools. This process was a long and tedious task, with hundreds of pages of details and new requirements that needed to be reviewed and addressed. But these procedures are necessary for everyone’s health and safety in a COVID era.
SO, here’s what we can tell you.
- The Board of Directors has voted unanimously to allow Hanford swimming pool to reopen. The task force is on pace to open this pool in early July. An official opening date will released closer as we draw closer.
- Guests will enter through the normal entrance gate, but in order to promote social distancing, exiting the pool deck will now be through the gate previously used for service only.
- The Gainsborough pool will not be reopening. Gainsborough does not possess a separate gate that can be used as an exit. In previous years, this was never an issue, and the pool passed the Wayne County pool inspections with highest grades. But this is a different era, and rules have changed. Additionally, social distancing on the pool deck would have severely limited capacity of swimmers. With these reasons in mind, the task force focused on opening the Hanford pool.
- In order to practice social distancing, Wayne County is limiting the number of individuals who may enter the pool deck at any given time. Due to the sizing of the Hanford pool deck, the capacity at Hanford swimming pool will be limited to 50 patrons at any given time.
- Social distancing must be enforced on the pool deck. Those residing in the same household may sit together – all others will need to remain six feet apart. In order to facilitate this, pool furniture will be removed and no seating will be provided. Residents will be permitted to bring their own captain’s style folding chairs and will be asked to remain in designated areas. Lounge chairs will not be permitted to allow for maximum usage of the deck space.
- All swimmers must arrive and depart in their swimwear as showers may not be available, and restrooms will be available for emergency use only.
- All patrons will be required to sign a COVID waiver. Parents/guardians will be required to sign the waiver for minors, and accompany them to the pool. Parents will be responsible for enforcing social distancing in the water.
- In order to permit the largest number of residents to participant, we will be unable to honor guest passes this year.
- No swimming lessons this year.
- Lifeguard stands will be cordoned off and will not be available for public access. Absolutely no access to the guardroom.
- While masks are not permitted in the water, they will be encouraged but not required on the pool deck.
- No flotation devices will be permitted this year. (Water wings for small children will be allowed). No balls or large water toys will be permitted. Small pool toys and swim goggles will be allowed.
- No Lost-and-Found. Any items that remain behind will be discarded.
- Swim sessions will be for a limited duration. More specific details on that to come.
There will be some other changes as well – all to make this year’s pool experienced a safe and healthy experience for everyone. We know you are all anxious to get back to the pool, and the task force is working diligently to make that happen. Lifeguards are being hired and trained, PPE, hand sanitizer and new equipment has been ordered, and the chemicals in the water are being balanced. These are all positive steps to make it happen!!
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation. We know a more detailed explanation of the pool experience will be forthcoming shortly.