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Public pools in southeast Minnesota off to rough summer start

Published: Jun. 20, 2022 at 10:48 PM CDT
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(KTTC) – On one of the hottest days of the year so far, Minnesota’s third largest city was nearly left with no public pools.

“We were told that we would probably need to have this pool shut down for the entire day,” said Brady Boie, head lifeguard at Soldiers Field Pool in Rochester.

A maintenance issue in the main pool at Soldiers Field made staff fear for the worst Monday. With Rochester’s other public pool, Silver Lake, shuttered until at least July due to a vandalism incident, Soldiers Field is really the only other option.

The maintenance issue at Soldiers Field was resolved by 12:30 p.m., though swimming lessons for the day were called off.

“Being able to keep a pool open and running is definitely something that has been available to us in the past, so today would’ve been pretty difficult,” said Boie.

So far in these early summer months, however, Rochester is not the only Southern Minnesota city with major roadblocks keeping pools from opening. Plainview’s public swimming pool is also closed indefinitely, and according to city administrator David Todd, when the pool will open up is anybody’s guess.

“Right now we have a pretty significant leak underneath the pool’s structure,” said Todd.

Todd says fixing the leak is a multistep process. First, they have to hire a leak detection company to come down and pinpoint where the leak is happening. After that, they must bring in a different company to fix the leak.

“With the amount of work that’s come their way this year, it’s been difficult to get on their schedule,” said Todd.

Though he’s unsure when the pool will open, the closure for now puts the residents of Plainview and surrounding communities, like Elgin, in a tough spot.

“It’s very frustrating, we were all kids once, right? I mean this is something they look forward to every year,” said Todd.

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