Sioux Falls needs more lifeguards to open outdoor pools

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Sioux Falls outdoor pools may not open as scheduled this summer.
They were closed last year because of the pandemic. This year there’s another problem.

Sioux Falls Parks & Recreation is seeking summer seasonal employees, especially lifeguards.

“It’s a big push at this point to make sure we’ve got the number of lifeguards that we need so that we can safely operate our pools,” Park Operations Manager Kelby Mieras said.

Mayor Paul TenHaken and his daughter recently took to Facebook Live urging people to apply.

“We need lifeguards badly. If you want the pools to be open this summer, talk to someone you know who can be a lifeguard and encourage them to apply,” Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken said.

The reasoning behind the shortage is simple.

“When we were closed last year, those people who are normally lifeguards they went and got other jobs, so now we need lifeguards bad, so bad actually that we are somewhat in a little bit of jeopardy of getting these pools open,” Mayor TenHaken said.

“We do have enough lifeguards that we can open some pools, but at this point we don’t have enough lifeguards that we could open all of the pools on opening day,” Mieras said.

Park Operations Manager Kelby Mieras says the department is still looking to hire more than 50 lifeguards. No experience is necessary.

“Anybody 15 years of age and older we’ll hire for lifeguards. We will train them, we will get them certified, we will pay for that certification as well,” Mieras said.

“Get out there and apply because we want the pools open. It was a long year last year without the pools and we’re ready to open them next month, but we need staff,” TenHaken said.

And the need doesn’t end at lifeguards.

“We’re still less than 50-percent of the people we need on the operations side for our pool maintenance and also about that same level for athletic field maintenance too,” Mieras said.

If you’re interested in seasonal employment with Sioux Falls Parks & Recreation, click HERE.

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