HARRISON TOWNSHIP, Mich. – The beautiful weather has people heading to state, metro, and county parks, but those parks are running into a snag when it comes to hiring seasonal staff.
Parks experienced the same challenges last year, and it doesn’t seem to be getting any better.
Matt Pardy, Park Supervisor for Red Oaks County Park, said they typically open the waterpark in early June, but staff shortages may push that back a few weeks.
“Right now, it looks like it’s not going to be feasible to be fully open seven days a week to the level we want,” said Pardy. “It’ll probably be a few days a week at this waterpark, a few days at our sister waterpark, which is Waterford Oaks, and sharing staff and doing staggered days to be able to open and then hopefully adding more staff as we move through the summer.”
It’s all about safety for visitors; There need to be 75 lifeguards between the two waterparks, but they currently have half of that.
“We are throwing a lot of resources at it,” Pardy said. “We’ve increased pay for lifeguards; we actually have over $800 in bonuses for new lifeguards to be hired.”
Pardy said high school and college students would typically be the ones to apply, and after multiple job fairs, Pardy noted that there are still not enough people applying.
Huron-Clinton Metroparks is facing the same challenges. Danielle Mauter, Chief of Marketing and Communications, said it might lead to decisions that will impact visitors.
“Lifeguard hiring has been a challenge, so visitors may experience hours that are different in our pools than they would see in an average summer,” Mauter said. “So we do suggest that people check our website before they head out for visits.”
To look at openings at Oakland County Parks, click here.
For open positions at Huron-Clinton Metroparks, click here.