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Wednesday, December 1, 2021
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Pools to close as the summer heat revs up

When I read the following notice regarding city pools, I couldn’t help but shake my head in amazement.

“The final days for pools are upon us this week. The pools will officially close for the summer season on August 3.” As the August heat — those unbearable ‘dog days’ – descend, the pools close up and our children head back to school. Insanity. The calendar runs summer through September 23rd.

Now I realize that the weather does begin its shift out of sync with the calendar, but in a town where lakes and ponds are virtually non-existent and the grass dries out from the often unrelenting heat, it makes no sense to:

a) start school that early (just as it makes no sense to end the school year in mid-May), and

b) close pools when they offer the greatest amount of relief from heat and humidity.

I can only hope we are not re-visited by a replay of last summer’s 100+degree record-breaking heat waves, or that if we are, that bus drivers and students are allowed to bring bottled water along for the ride, that sports trainers are aware of the correlation between high heat, heat indexes, heat island effects and potential illness.

I realize that many like this system, that the early start date for local schools has great support in many corners, but it doesn’t take an hour for hot humid air in close quarters to trigger heat exhaustion or worse.

The rest of this public notice reads:

“It’s not too late to get in on some cool summer fun at Smith Pool on Greenwood Avenue at Norman Smith Elementary School. Smith Pool is less crowded during the morning hours and is an excellent place for adults with small children to spend a relaxing time. Pool admission is $5 and after 3 p.m., late arrivals pay $3. All of our pools will be open daily this week from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.”

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