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Hastings pool expected to reopen early next week; meanwhile, YMCA offers its pool to the public

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news Hastings, 55033
Hastings Star Gazette
651-437-5911 customer support
Hastings Minnesota 745 Spiral Boulevard 55033

On June 19, the City of Hastings announced it had to close down the Hastings Family Aquatic Center for repairs.

The pool had been losing a significant amount of water due to leaking. Two repairs have already been done recently, but further action was needed to stop the water loss. The Hastings Parks and Recreation Department has contacted a leak detection company as well as pool building and repair companies to help identify the source of the problem.

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“We intend to repair all leaks and issues prior to opening the pool again, so the closure could last for a week or longer,”  said Parks and Recreation Director Chris Jenkins last week. “This is an extremely difficult decision for us to make, but we feel it is the most responsible decision at this time. We have done our best to this point to find and resolve the water issues and keep the pool operating, but it has become apparent that we are facing a more significant issue than we were hoping for.”

One of the issues was in the pipes, Jenkins said. Over the winter, some of the pipes that are part of the play structure had frozen and broke. When the pool closed temporarily earlier this season, it was also for a pipe fitting that had frozen and broke over the winter. That one was under the pool deck, Jenkins said.

Another issue was in the pool gutters. Caulking in the expansion joints there had failed, Jenkins said. The expansion joints are likely about 14 years old, he said. Becaues of where they're located, though, repairing them has taken some extra work. 

Plumbing work was finished Tuesday this week, caulking was being done Wednesday and plastering was set to be done today (Thursday). Once all that's finished, staff will have to refill the 360,000 gallon facility and heat and balance the water.

Jenkins said he hoped to see the pool reopened by Monday, June 30, but added that it could potentially open a little earlier or later, depending on how the rest of the work goes.

The closure has affected HFAC employees as well as the public, but the city has done its best to keep pool staff busy and earning their summer pay. Earlier this week, many staff were out working on other parks projects, such as working on landscaping projects around the pool, landscaping at City Hall, putting down woodchips on playgrounds and other general maintenance work.

"Those that are available and are willing to do it, we're kind of reaching out there to keep them busy," Jenkins said. "We know it's an impact on them."

In order to make up for the closure, the city plans to keep the facility open a week longer in late summer as well as staying open an extra hour on Saturdays and Sundays for the rest of the season. Saturday and Sunday hours will be from noon to 8 p.m.

The pool was originally scheduled to close Aug. 24 for the end of the season, but will now remain open until Aug. 31.

For detailed updates regarding make-up lessons, call HFAC at 651-480-2385.

While repair work keeps the Hastings pool closed, the Hastings YMCA is opening its doors to help make sure swimmers don't have to miss out on a dip in the pool. A youth day pass is available for $5 and a family day pass is $12. Youth ages 7 and younger must be accompanied by an adult in the pool area. Youth ages 10 and younger must be accompanied by an adult in the building. Photo ID is required. For more information, call the YMCA at 651-480-8887.

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Katrina Styx
Katrina Styx has been a reporter for the Hastings Star Gazette since 2010. She has a bachelor's degree in English with a minor in journalism from the University of Wisconsin - River Falls. Prior to coming to Hastings, Katrina reported for weekly newspapers in Jordan, Minn., and River Falls, Wis.
(651) 319-4501
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