NYC Parks' outdoor pools set to open at full capacity this weekend

VAN CORTLANDT PARK, the Bronx (WABC) -- The New York City Parks Department's outdoor pools are set to open for the season at full capacity this weekend.

Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver was on hand at Van Cortlandt Pool in the Bronx Thursday morning and took part in the first splash of the summer with kids from the Kingsbridge Heights Community Center.

"Last summer we didn't even think we were going to open the pools. Then when we got the green light from the mayor, we had to quickly start training lifeguards," Silver said. "We had to wait and delay it further because we had to train our lifeguards and then they had to do resuscitation during COVID, so they had to learn a whole new technique."

It's one of 16 pools that have received makeovers in the past three years and one of three the department has dubbed 'Cool Pools.'

"People are now calling this the resort, in fact, it now looks like a resort. Our 'Cool Pools' have all new colorful paint and fun art, along with a lot of games. So this is not just a pool, it's a place, it's a destination where you can spend the entire day," Silver said.

Pools will open beginning Saturday, June 26 from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., seven days a week.

Pool capacity will not be limited for the upcoming season.

Social distancing is still recommended, and face coverings will be required to enter the facility.

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