ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — It may not feel like summer today, but many local pools are set to open this weekend.
The Rockford Park District’s aquatics manager, Derricka Davis, says there’s a shortage of lifeguards across the county.
Currently, the park district is looking for upwards of 30 lifeguards to staff the summer season. To try and help fill the ranks, they’ve increased the wages to $15 an hour.
Sand Park Pool, at 1041 E Riverside Blvd in Loves Park, will welcome back swimmers on June 12th.
A week later, Harkins Aquatic Center, at 910 Acorn St, and Alpine Pool, at 4310 Newburg Rd, will open on June 19th.
But, if more lifeguards aren’t hired, hours of operation will have to be reduced, and closures are possible.
Park District officials say they hope it won’t come to that, especially after the pools were shut down last summer, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“They’re all itching for it. And the residents of Sand Park, they’ve been without this pool for three years. So to bring it back, we want to bring it back in full force, in full capacity. But we need the community’s help to make that happen,” Davis said.
You can find more information on becoming a lifeguard in the Rockford Park District here.