SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — If all of the indoor and outdoor, wading pools and splash parks were full at one time in Sioux Falls, there’d be about 5,000 people at them.
The capacity numbers include those in the pool, on sun decks and general deck areas.
The capacity numbers may be reached this weekend with forecast temperatures of the mid-90s on Saturday and at 100 degrees on Sunday.
The upcoming heat will arrive just after the Sioux Falls city council approved a new collaboration that will focus on the city’s aging aquatic facilities.
The oldest pool is the wading pool at McKennan Park which opened in 1971. The capacity of that pool is 202.
The Frank Olson pool opened in 1972. The pool is located at 4101 E. 16th St. The main pool holds 207 in the swimming area and five in the diving pool, while the wading pool holds 72 with 61 on the deck. The total pool and deck capacity is 469 and 133 for the wading pool.
Kuehn Park pool at 2309 Kuehn Park Road opened in 1981. The wading pool’s capacity is 143 and the main pool’s capacity is 417. The wading pool holds 71 while the deck holds 72. The main pool holds 208 and the diving pool holds 5. The remainder of the capacity is on the decks.
Parks and Recreation director Don Kearney said one of the tasks of the joint group will be to focus on the replacement of the three oldest pools. A 2020 study from Pros Consulting of Indianapolis, Indiana, recommended replacing the Frank Olson pool, Kuehn pool, and the McKennan wading pool. The replacement of those pools is part of the department’s master plan for 2020-2024.
Closures have plagued Frank Olson pool since at least 2014. Past repairs include mechanical problems and a broken water line.
Two outdoor pools opened in the 1990s.
Terrace Park pool at 101 W. Madison St. opened in 1993. The total capacity is 1,000. Data from the city does not break the capacity down by pool or deck.
The capacity limit at Laurel Oak is 650. The pool at 3401 E. 49th St. opened in 1994. The data is not broken into pool or deck capacities.
The newest outdoor pool is Drake Springs with a capacity limit of 787. The data is not broken into pool or deck capacities. The pool opened in 2009 and is located at 310 S. Fairfax Ave.
Pioneer Spray Park has a capacity of 228. The spray park opened in 2009 and it’s located at 1800 E. Walnut St.
The city’s indoor pool, the Midco Aquatic Center at 1601 S. Western Ave. opened in 2016. The capacity of the recreation pool is 200. The capacity of the warm water pool is 60 and the capacity of the 50-meter pool and mezzanine is 820.
The overall annual attendance at outdoor pools has been fairly steady since 2017 in non-COVID years. All outdoor pools were closed in 2020 because of COVID.
For example, Drake Springs had an attendance of 48,289 in 2017. In 2021, the attendance increased to 55,615.
Attendance at Frank Olson increased from 13,278 in 2017 to 16,627 in 2019. The pool was closed in 2021.