Lions Pool, YMCA & Yakima Rotary Aquatic Center reopening after months-long closure

New aquatics and fitness center opens Thursday in Yakima

YAKIMA, Wash. — Two indoor pools in Yakima are reopening after months of being closed due to COVID-19 restrictions: Lions Pool and the YMCA & Yakima Rotary Aquatic Center.

The change comes after an announcement from the Yakima Health District last week clarifying that pools could reopen with restrictions under Modified Phase 1 of the governor’s Safe Start plan.

The pools are required to follow certain guidelines for safely reopening, including limiting capacity and limiting activities to lap swimming and water walking.

“We are trusting the public health officials and also implementing additional precautions … so that it’s as safe as possible,” City of Yakima spokesperson Randy Beehler said.

Some of the new precautions are the same for both pools:

  • Wear a face covering when going to or from the pool and when entering and exiting the facility
  • Maintain social distancing (at least six feet apart)
  • Do not come if you feel sick in any way
  • Do not gather in groups in the pool area, lobby or parking lot
  • No swim lessons, recreational swimming or rentals at this time

The city-owned Lions Pool reopened Tuesday, while the YMCA & Yakima Rotary Aquatic Center is scheduled to reopen Wednesday.  YMCA of Yakima’s downtown facility pool will remain closed at this time.

“Under the current operating directives, it is not feasible to open both of our locations,” YMCA of Yakima officials said.  “Four and a half months without operating revenue requires us to be very tactical in our re-opening approach.”

City officials previously announced that the city’s only outdoor pool, Franklin Pool, would remain closed for the season.

LIONS POOL — 509 W. PINE ST.

Lions Pool reopened with a limited capacity on Tuesday, with only 35 people allowed inside the pool at a time.

Swimming is first come, first served and people are asked to keep their time in the pool to about a half-hour. Water exercise equipment is available, but users are expected to handle it safely.

“We just ask water walkers, swimmers to put that back into a seperate bin and then it’ll be sanitized,” Beehler said.

Staff are required to wear personal protective equipment at all times and test pH and disinfectant levels at least twice per day to ensure swimmers’ safety.

General admission is $2 for youth, $4 for adults, $13 for a family of six, $15 for a family of 8 and $2.25 for anyone 62 and older. The pool also offers a three-month pass or a punch card for 10 visits.

Lions Pool is open from:

  • 6 a.m. to 8 a.m., Monday through Friday
  • 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday through Thursday
  • 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Friday
  • 1:30 p.m. to  3 p.m., Monday through Friday
  • 3:15 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. Monday through Friday
  • 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday

More information on new protocols at Lions Pool can be found here or by calling 509-575-6046.

YMCA & YAKIMA ROTARY AQUATIC CENTER — 3800 RIVER RD.

The YMCA & Yakima Rotary Aquatic Center is scheduled to open Wednesday for lap swimming and water walking.

Anyone wanting to visit the aquatic center must make an online reservation  one to two days before they want to swim. Each person reserves their own lane for up to 45 minutes.

Participation is limited to YMCA members 14 and older and those with monthly adult aquatics passes, which can be purchased online.

For a general one-month membership, the fee is $30 for teens 14 to 18 years old, $50 for young adults 19 to 24 years old, $80 for adults 25 to 64 years old and $68 for seniors

The sauna, steam room, hot tub, lazy river, water slides and other indoor water features are closed, with only the lap pool available for use. Anyone not swimming will not be allowed into the building.

Restrooms are available, but locker rooms are closed and there is no on-site changing, meaning people will need to come already dressed to swim.

Pool equipment and towel service are not available, so people must bring their own towels, pool noodles, kickboards, water weights and any other needed items.

Additionally, the aquatic center has step-by-step instructions on how to follow its new protocols:

  • Prior to using the facility, all participants will need to complete a new waiver form, which is available on the website or at the front desk.
  • After coming through the entry doors, scan your membership or aquatic pass card. If needed, wait on one of the dots placed on the floor to help maintain social distancing.
  • Proceed down the hallway, to the right of the front desk, past the family locker rooms and through the double doors onto the pool deck.
  • Upon entering the pool deck, check in with a staff member to confirm which lane to use.
  • Place your towel and any personal items on the deck chair placed closest to your designated lane.
  • Rinse off under the pool deck shower before entering the water. You may then begin to swim or water walk in your designated lane.
  • When a staff member announces the end of your session, exit the pool, put your mask back on, dry off and make your way to the exit doors.
  • When you exit the pool deck, keep to the right side of the hallway, go around the entry desk (follow the signs) and exit through the doors marked exit.

More information on new protocols at the aquatic center can be found here.

The YMCA & Yakima Rotary Aquatic Center is open from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturdays.