Bismarck outdoor pools open for the season

Published: Jun. 1, 2020 at 1:50 PM CDT
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Here’s a sure sign of summer: Bismarck’s three public outdoor swimming pools opened Monday, with some changes because of COVID-19.

Bismarck Parks and Rec is following the ND Smart Restart and CDC guidelines, which means pools are open to 75% capacity.

Hours have changed slightly this year; the Elks and Wachter Centers will be open from noon to 6 p.m. daily; Hillside will be open from noon to 7 p.m.

Staff is doing extra cleaning of bathrooms, concession areas and chairs.

Swimming lessons aren’t being offered in June, but they’re hopeful to start offering outdoor lessons again in July.

Employees say they’re just happy to be back and to have a little bit of “normal” return.

"I love being at the pool. I love seeing all the kids and the family. So great to have this sense of normalcy especially with everything going on, so many changes. It’s just really great to be at the pool especially on such a great day," says Lexie Rusch, manager at Elks Aquatic Center.

Bismarck Parks and Rec is still hiring lifeguards. You can learn more about that on their website,

Check that site often this summer, as they’ll be sharing any changes to pool hours and rules there as well as on their social media pages.