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Parkwood Pool in Kansas City, Kansas, to reopen Memorial Day weekend

Parkwood Pool Announcement May 17
Posted at 4:23 PM, May 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-17 23:13:13-04

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Barring any setbacks the only public pool in Kansas City, Kansas, will open Memorial Day weekend.

The pandemic and a lifeguard shortage kept Parkwood Pool closed for two years.

However, this year the Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas partnered up with Midwest Pools to find new lifeguards. Marcus Jones is one of them.

"It means everything. It means community development, community relations — this is like the hotspot for everybody to come and just to hang out," Jones said.

Neighbors say when it gets hot, it’s an attraction around the clock.

"I hate seeing it all the time. Kids climb the fence at two o'clock, one o'clock in the morning and go play and swim, and who knows whether they can swim or not," Richard Stalings, who lives nearby, told KSHB 41 News.

Last year, a teen lost his life when he jumped over the fence with his friends, went into the deep end and couldn’t make it to the surface.

"It was a tragic accident that should have never have happened," Angel Obert, UG Director of Parks and Recreation, said.

In the aftermath, the pool was drained while leaders came up with ways to teach young people how to swim, first launching a pilot program.

Now, the Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools District will offer swim lessons to summer school students at the following schools in the district:

  • Eugene Ware
  • Arrowhead
  • Carl B. Bruce
  • Wyandotte High School
  • Washington High School

A KCKPS spokesperson said they may expand the swim program at middle schools during the next academic year.

Besides seeing additional security around the perimeter of the pool, people in the neighborhood would like to see a cover go on top of the pool whenever it's not in use.

This is something that county leaders say they're considering.

"We're exploring all that," KCK Mayor Tyrone Garner said. "The administrative team is exploring all those things to make sure that this pool is not just something for our kids to enjoy, but also this pool is secured in a way that provides safety to our residents."

One county leader believes it can't be done alone.

"You know what's right. You know what's wrong. Let's abide by that," Gayle Townsend, who represents district 1, said.

The pool opens to the public Saturday, May 28. KCK is waiving their one dollar admission on that particular day.