Before you pack up the kids to head to one of these 55 free public pools, make sure you know what you can and can’t bring along with all the other rules.
You can learn by visiting the NYC Parks public pools website, where you will also find all the locations. Note that not all the pools have wheelchair lifts or ramps so if you need one, please check there.
The website also offers the hours operation and rules you need to follow, such as men’s suits must have linings (and yes, they can stop and check you) and that only white shirts and white hats may be worn on the pool decks.
Other tips for visiting NYC public pools:
- Operating hours are generally 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. with a pool cleaning break between 3 and 4 p.m., so plan your trip accordingly.
- The pools close for the season on Sept. 9.
- Lock must be brought to secure valuables in available lockers. Locks are required to enter.
- No outside food or glass bottles allowed.
- Plastic water bottles, however, are allowed.
- All babies required to wear swim diapers.
- Other than swim shirts, only shirts that are completely white are permitted to be worn in the pool area.
- Stroller parking is available at NYC public pools, but they are left unguarded and nobody is responsible for them.
- All men’s bathing suits need a lining inside. No board shorts, dude.
- Kids age 7 and older must use the bathroom of their gender.
- Floaties are not permitted unless they are attached to the swimsuit.
- Morning lap swim sessions, swim lessons and exercise classes are available at many pools. Check the pool’s web site.
Photo: McCarren Park public pool courtesy www.nycgovparks.org