It’s official! The pools are open here in NYC, but every time I suggest we go swimming in the neighborhood pool, I get an “ew. I don’t want to be swimming in a see of pee.”
Well, I tried it last year, I did not get sick and in fact, I survived and would do it again (and you have until September 3 to try it too!). Â Before you turn your nose up and get ready to sweat it out in the heat this summer, let’s revisit my trip to Astoria’s pool, shall we?
Yesterday, I spent the day at the pool. Â As someone who has lived in New York for four years, I realize how weird it sounds to say that.
You can swim in more thanÂ 54 free poolsÂ in NYC. Â The pools are open from 11am â€“ 7pm, and are closed daily from 3-4 pm for cleaning. Â Since I found myself off this week from work, I decided to check out the pool at Astoria Park, which is one of the oldest in the city. Â At 330 x 165 feet long, itâ€™s also one of the biggest in the city.
We showed up at about 1 pm, and there was no line to get into the pool. Â I had tried to stop by on the weekend, but the line was outrageous and wrapped around the building. Â My advice: go on a weekday if your schedule allows it, or consider showing up during the pool cleaning time to get in line, or right before it opens.
Iâ€™d check the rules of the pool you want to attend, but in Astoria, you cannot bring anything on to the pool deck but your sunscreen, a book, a towel, sun glasses and flip flops. Â Otherwise, they will make you lock everything up â€“ so donâ€™t expect to bring a picnic lunch (or eat it beforehand like we did!). Â My advice is to bring the minimal amount of stuff you think youâ€™ll need as well as a combination lock, since there are lockers available. Â I locked my items up and took a mandatory shower since they make you rinse off before heading to the pool. Â I carried out my towel and sunscreen to the pool deck (aka the cement) and found a spot to lay down my stuff while I headed into the pool.
It was 93 degrees out, so the pool was certainly refreshing. Â There were about 10 lifeguards on duty, and the pool was about 4 feet deep. Â For me, it was a great way to beat the heat without breaking the bank. Â And to my surprise, I thought the pool was really clean â€“ there was nothing gross floating around and most people behaved themselves (although I did get splashed from time to time). Â I will say however, it did feel like a mean summer camp towards the end of my stay at the pool. Â Around 2:45 pm you are asked to head to the locker room so they can clean the pool, and essentially, you are kicked out of the facility. Â I was rushing to change into my clothes, but the employees keep yelling at you and telling you to hurry. Â If you can ignore the yelling, you are fine, but just note that this isnâ€™t the friendliest staff.
If you are worried about cleanliness of some of NYCâ€™s public pools, check outÂ this story from the New York Post. Â When the water was tested at theÂ Gansevoortâ€™s rooftop poolÂ a few weeks back, they found traces of possible fecal matter, while the public pool water in Astoria, Red Hook and more was nearly drinkable! Â Hope you all get a few swims in this summer.