Coquille’s pool is on track to reopen this summer.
City councilors on Monday unanimously — and enthusiastically — approved a request to reopen the city pool for activities this summer after a season shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Judy Arellano, the city community building administrator, told councilors she’d worked with the staff at Coos Bay’s Mingus Park pool to find a way to reopen the pool safely. Mingus has been open throughout the pandemic, with virus precautions in place.
Many of those precautions will look similar at Coquille’s pool when it reopens, likely the first weekend in June.
“(T)he lifeguards will be required to wear those clear visors, the ones that you can see through. And that’s how they do it at Mingus Park,” Arellano said. “I figured if we just kind of followed the way Mingus Park is doing it, their pool was open last year.”
The pool at Mingus Park currently sees guests by appointment for lap swimming. Arellano said the Coquille pool will probably be able to open many of its typical activities, including open swim sessions.
It’ll also be easier to handle the reopening with the county finally out of the extreme-risk level of virus rules as of April 9.
“When we were in extreme risk, I thought we weren’t going to be able to really open for open session swim — we will be able to,” Arellano said. “I don’t think water aerobics probably will be a thing, because they kind of gather more ... because they sometimes have quite a few people come out for that. But all the other things I think we’ll be able to go forward with.”
Under the high-risk rules, the pool will be limited to 25% capacity, or around 60 people, Arellano said.
Councilors Monday expressed their excitement to see the pool reopening.
“Judy, on behalf of the families in Coquille, thank you and Judy (Gederos, who assisted in the planning,) for jumping on this,” said Mayor Sam Flaherty.
Councilor John Cooper noted the reopening of the pool comes at a good time for the county’s swimming community.
“It’s really awesome that we’re opening up, because we lost another pool in our county, with North Bend shutting their pool down.”
That pool has been closed since the pandemic began, and likely will struggle to reopen without the passage of a tax levy for significant repairs in the May election.