New Lanspeary Park swimming pool opens Saturday

Windsor residents can check out the new 5,200-square-foot swimming pool at Lanspeary Park starting this Saturday when city-operated pools open for the season.

The new $3-million facility, located at 1250 Langlois Ave., replaces the 70-year-old pool that has been closed since 2022.

It features a beach entry design and an L-shaped pool, which will increase accessibility to the water as well as program possibilities.

Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens, who spoke at the unveiling of the pool Thursday, says there's a lot of excitement around it.

Dilkens said removing barriers from the old design "opens up a whole other universe of possibilities for people with mobility issues or age related restrictions."

New programming possibilities at new pool

The new pool will offer parent and tot programming, learn-to-swim programs for people of all ages, aqua fit classes and aquatic leadership courses. This will mark the first time there's been swimming lessons held at the pool since 2015.

Non-traditional activities like floating yoga and learning to kayak will also be available at the Lanspeary Park pool.

The old pool needed to be completely rebuilt. Dilkens says the renovations took longer than expected but stayed within the budget.

The City of Windsor operates four indoor and seven outdoor pools as well as Sandpoint Beach. The outdoor pools open Saturday, with the exception of Central Outdoor Pool, which is undergoing repairs until July 6.

The city also operates 11 splash pads, which are open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The opening of the pools comes on the heels of last week's heat dome, which saw temperatures hit the mid 30s.

Dilkens says pools could open earlier in the year to provide residents some relief from the heat but only if there's enough staff to operate safely. He says many of the city's lifeguards have school commitments for the month of June.

The mayor says the city's pool schedule for the most part works.

"It's one that balances the operational needs with the times we see really hot weather in July and August," Dilkens said.

Lingering effects of COVID-19

Dilkens called the COVID-19 pandemic "a trying time for aquatics" and says the city only recently recovered from the impacts.

Many lifeguards are high school or post-secondary students, and several of them left their roles as lifeguards to pursue careers and more permanent work during the pandemic, said Jenn Knights, the city's executive director of recreation and culture.

"That depleted the bank of the city's senior staff."

Knights says Windsor's hired 75 staff since last fall and that the city is working hard to get the staffing numbers back up. She says there's currently more than 220 aquatics staff.

"We're fully ready to go for the summer," Knights said.