Taking the plunge: Kanawha City pool facility reopens

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The Greenbrier Pool on Chesterfield Avenue in Kanawha City reopened — with social distancing practices in place and practice — on June 6. This courtesy photo was taken while a few mermaids visited the private facility last year.

The Greenbrier Pool in Kanawha City reopened on Saturday, June 6, with more than a splash of patron protective measures and health and safety guidelines in place and in force.

Adhering to ongoing and occasionally fluid COVID-19 strictures, pool officials have established the following policies — subject to modification — for this season’s operations:

• At present, no set limit of members permitted at the pool is established, although guidelines mandate limited occupancy to ensure proper social distancing.

• No guests or visitors are being allowed at least through June 20, to make sure members can use the facilities without overloading the pool’s square footage. A re-evaluation will take place about modifying the rules after June 20. The pool will schedule no parties or allow use of the picnic shelter area during this time frame, although those policies will also be re-evaluated and possibly adjusted later this month.

• Chairs and tables are placed in designated areas to comply with social distancing guidelines and must remain where placed. Members are allowed to bring chairs from home. Pool staff members will clean chairs, tables and other commonly touched surfaces each day.

• The basketball court will be used for chairs only until further notice, as basketball playing currently does not comply with 6-foot social distancing regulations.

• Grass areas around the pool deck will be painted for social distancing regulations. Patrons are permitted to bring umbrellas, EZ-Up canopies and chairs for use in these areas.

• Disinfecting/sanitation products will be available for members to clean their area before and after use.

• No rafts or floats will be allowed. Pool noodles are permitted.

• The snack bar will have limited offerings at present. Chips, soda pop and candy bars will be available for purchase from the guard stand, but no hot food will be sold. Members can bring in their own food and drinks.

• Temperature checks will be conducted daily by board members, managers or lead guards. Patrons must be checked at the front gate. All staff members will also be screened daily to combat any possible virus exposure. Anyone with a fever higher than 100.4 degrees will not be permitted to enter.

• All members and staff are to self-report any symptoms to other staff members as soon as possible. Employees and patrons experiencing symptoms such as fever, an unusual cough, shortness of breath, a loss of taste/smell, sore throat or muscle aches, are requested to not come to the pool. Patrons and staff must be fever free for 72 hours, without using any fever-reducing medications, before entry to pool is allowed.

• Masks are encouraged when social distancing is not possible. Masks are not to be worn while in the pool. Staff will wear masks when in close contact with members when safely possible.

• If someone in your home is diagnosed positive with COVID-19, all members of the family must quarantine for 14 days and will not be allowed access to the pool during the quarantine period.

• All members are encouraged to wash their hands often and cover all sneezes and cough into their elbow.

• Lifeguards who are actively lifeguarding will not be expected to monitor hand washing, use of face coverings or social distancing of others. Parents are responsible for their children and who they’re around in and out of the pool. Families are encouraged to stay with families in which they reside or have had previous regular contact.

• Sharing of goggles, nose clips and snorkels will not be permitted.

• All personal items (chairs, noodles, goggles, towels, etc.) are to be taken home daily or they could be thrown away at the end of each day.

• The number of people permitted in the pool restrooms and common areas at one time will be limited to maintain social distancing.

The private, community pool is located at 5103 Chesterfield Ave., S.E., and is scheduled to be open through Labor Day. Pool hours of operation are noon to 8 p.m. seven days a week. The 25-meter, heated pool contains an extra-long shallow area and a diving well. It is surrounded by a concrete deck and is complemented by a separate baby pool, basketball court, play equipment and a picnic area with gas grills. As noted above, some of these areas are being restricted on a subject-to-change basis.

Tony Thomas, vice president of the Greenbrier Pool Board of Directors, said pool membership rates have been reduced this season as well. A family membership is $550, with no stock assessment. A single membership costs $400, a senior single membership, for ages 65 and older, is $385 and an “Empty Nest” membership, for two adults and no children, is $475. No stock assessments are charged for these memberships either.

A “Welcome to GB Pool Package” is also being offered to new members. Anyone who has never been a member of the pool and who did not join for the 2019 season can join for $450, also with no stock assessments charged.

“We are hoping use this pandemic as a springboard to introduce ourselves to new residents in and around Kanawha City who didn’t know we exist. We’re hoping it’s not detrimental to us — we hope it will move us forward, in terms of membership,” Thomas said.

For additional information, contact the Greenbrier Pool at 304-925-8310; go to its website, www.greenbrierpool.com; or send email correspondence to GreenbrierPoolWV@gmail.com. Pool management officials recommend checking the pool’s Facebook page for status updates as well.

Built in the 1950s, the Greenbrier Pool was renovated and expanded in the 1970s, with other additions, such a major remodeling in 2002, in ensuing years.

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