COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (KMTV) — Pirate Cove and Katelman pools have been a summer staple for kids in Council Bluffs for decades. However, it will be much harder for them to soak up time around the pool this month.
Due to a lifeguard shortage, each pool was only able to remain open for three hours a day for Memorial Day weekend.
A similar trend will continue throughout June as the two pools will now alternate weeks they are open.
Many families buy summer passes for their children to stay busy in a safe environment throughout the summer, but the lack of lifeguards forcing the city into an alternating schedule makes that tougher
"It's difficult mentally for us because we are used to having both pools being full instead of one at a time. We know there's other people out there who want to come to the pools all day long, but we're trying to keep these open as much as we can,” Council Bluffs Aquatics Coordinator Mike Bond said. “We want to serve both areas of town so this is what we felt we should do. Open the one here on the north side of town and also the south side of town."
Bond says this is his 47th year as the Aquatics Coordinator for the city and the first year they couldn't open both pools at the same time.
"We were short last year but we were able to keep both pools open most of the time,” Bond said. “We were closed one day each, we limited some services, we were five guards short last year."
He says it's not just the metro, but the entire country dealing with the shortages.
The pools need to fill 12 full-time positions or the equivalent to that with part-time workers. If they can get those filled, they will return to a normal schedule in July.
The city is hosting lifeguard training at Pirate Cove Tuesday night from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. but you must apply online first.