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Milwaukee Co. residents prepare for the heat with limited pool options this year

Posted at 6:06 PM, Jun 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-04 19:06:02-04

MILWAUKEE COUNTY — The heat has arrived and many people in Milwaukee County are looking for ways to stay cool. However, the options may be a little limited this summer.

The boats, sand, water, joggers running with no shirts – all elements that make up a warm day in Milwaukee.

“Potentially going to the pool at my apartment,” said John Cummins, who visited the beach with his family.

As the sun pounds down over the weekend, pools and beaches in the area are top of mind, even for people like Tim Ochnikowski, a beachgoer who uses a wheelchair. He can now soak up some sun thanks to Bradford Beach’s new accessibility features.

”It’s opening up the greatest park crown jewel we have here for everybody,” Ochnikowski said.

This year, though, Milwaukee County will only open a third of its usual twelve pools due to a lifeguard shortage.

milwaukee county pools and water parks

“We’ll have four pools that are open and approximately 15 wading pools and splash pads,” said Guy Smith, Director of Milwaukee County Parks.

Cool Waters in Greenfield is open and already nearly booked through the hot weekend. County Executive David Crowley said people can find many ways to use parks to stay cool.

"Always come to a county park,” he said. “You can be under the trees. Under the shade.”

Crowley also urges people to consider options at home.

“If you have an opportunity to bring out the water hose or the water slide, you should be doing that," he said.

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Similar words from the Milwaukee Fire Department. Chief Aaron Lipski wants to remind people not to illegally tamper with fire hydrants, as doing so disrupts water pressure which in turn hinders firefighting abilities. The Department of Public Works says they have locked over 3,000 hydrants in the city.

The City of Milwaukee Health Department said it doesn’t plan on opening cooling centers as we haven’t reached that level of a heat emergency at this time.

Click here to learn more about Milwaukee County's pools and water parks.

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