ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. – Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer with community swimming pools opening up everywhere. This year it appears that won’t be happening in some areas.
“They’ve already started to get a little antsy and I get that, but we have to teach them. This is a teachable moment; that it’s about their health,” said Dellwood Mayor Reggie Jones.
The mayor had to make the tough decision to shut down the summer camp and close the recreation center swimming pool due to restrictions with COVID-19.
“If it’s not about saving our community and saving our people then I’m not for it,” he said. “So, definitely putting the residents and community before anything, so it wasn’t hard to make that kind of decision.”
Meanwhile, about an hour south, officials in Farmington are taking a different approach. They will be opening up their parks and swimming pools beginning June 1.
“We are limiting the attendance to 450, which is about 50 percent capacity, so we can provide the appropriate space for social distancing,” City Administrator Gregory Beavers said.
He has made it clear – if it appears their plan isn’t meeting CDC standards, they will gladly shut it all down.
Back in Dellwood, with the pools closed, folks over at Salvation Army inside the Ferguson Empowerment Center are moving forward with their summer program but in a reduced way.
“When I got the order about Dellwood we tried to strategize what we wanted to do to address that,” said Jason Acklin, Ferguson Community Empowerment Center. “So just looking for the summer and possibly for the future on how programs will be running for kids in the community.”
They are encouraging all parents to keep their kids up and active in one way or another this summer.
“Even though it’s not the summer that we thought we have in 2020 but let’s make the best of it and come together and support our young people and our families,” said Veronica Edwards, Ferguson Community Empowerment Center.