Splashing into fun: Youth enjoying summer fun at Gering pool

Lauren Brant/Gering Courier Emma Chrisman goes off the slide at the Gering swimming pool Tuesday. Local youth enjoyed splashing in the pool despite the cloudy weather.

The cloudy weather did not stop youth from diving into the Gering swimming pool for an afternoon of fun Tuesday.

As people in the community take advantage of the pool as the summer heats up, pool manager Katie Martindale said it’s important to be safe.

“It’s important to just watch out for others and their personal space,” Martindale said. “Watching before they jump into the pool and everyone doing their part to create a safe environment.”

With school out, many youth are enjoying their summer with friends at the pool.

Kamry Lopez and Jayla Moore spent Tuesday swimming around and jumping off the diving board.

“I just like hanging out with my friends,” Lopez said. “It’s been a good summer so far.”

Moore said her favorite part of summer is swimming.

“I like going to the pool,” Moore said. “I like the slide because it’s fun to go down.”

Lopez added they also like diving off the diving board.

While local youth splash around in the pool, playing keep away and diving for rings, Martindale said her favorite part about opening the pool is “Just being able to have a place where people can go during the summer and actually do something and getting to see people in the community have fun.”

The lifeguards blew on their whistles and many swimmers transitioned from the big pool to the kiddie pool during the break. For 5-year-old Ezra Hernandez, he was all smiles as he went swimming for the first time this summer.

“It’s fun,” Hernandez said.

While his brothers and sisters enjoyed swimming in the big pool, Hernandez walked on his hands and kicked around in the kiddie pool. He said his favorite part of swimming is floating, but the most challenging part is sitting, since he wears a life jacket.

“You can’t get down,” he said.

Hernandez purchased a pool pass Monday and is looking forward to splashing through the summer, which he said has been good so far.

As the community enjoys the pool throughout the summer, Martindale said it’s still important to wear sunscreen.

“I hope that everyone is using their sunscreen,” she said. “Skin safety is huge. That’s not just for today, it’s literally for your whole life.”

Martindale said it is also important to create a safe environment so everyone continues to enjoy it.

“It’s important they are watching out for others,” Martindale said. “It’s about doing their part to create a safe environment.”

The Gering pool is open 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. daily. Family swim is from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. and children need to be accompanied by an adult, 18 years or older.

The pool also offers swimming lessons, which costs an additional $20 with a season pass or $30 without a pass. Lessons are from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. daily with the first session beginning June 11 and lasts for two weeks. The second session starts June 24 and the final session begins July 16.

Each swimming lesson session is offered in levels based upon swimming ability. Level one has swimmers focus on becoming comfort in the water and keeping their heads above water. Level six is the hardest and is pre-life guard training where swimmers learn flip turns.

A single pool pass for adults, ages 16 and older, is $4, youth, ages five to 15 is $3.50 and children 4 and younger are free. Single season passes are $65 and a family season pass costs $120.

Lauren Brant is a reporter with the Star-Herald and the Gering Courier. Contact her at 308-632-9043 or by email at lauren.brant@starherald.com.