Lifeguard shortage could mean reduced hours, closures at many Metro Detroit pools
As we inch closer and closer to Memorial Day weekend, many pools in Metro Detroit are opening up for the summer season -- but they need more lifeguards and fast. If they don’t get help, it could mean reduced hours or closures.
Ann Arbor public pools to maintain limited capacity through Memorial Day weekend
Buhr, Fuller and Veterans Memorial pools will be updating their operating procedures for the summer following recent announcements from Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS).
SPOTLIGHT: Talented swimmer places 1st in the 50 and 100 yard freestyle events
Dilger has been swimming competitively since he was 6 years old and currently spends around 5-6 days per week in the pool. His favorite category is Freestyle, both sprint and distance events. This year, he placed 1st in both the 50 and 100-yard freestyle events at the Macomb County Championships. “Both events have completely different mindsets and physical demands which require strategy and endurance.”Like many high school athletes, the pandemic has brought difficult times and the pause of their sport. For Dilger, the past fifteen months have been difficult in and out of the pool.
City of Ann Arbor to open all three outdoor pools this summer
ANN ARBOR – The outdoor public pools at Fuller Park, Buhr Park and Veterans Memorial Park will be open this summer, the city of Ann Arbor announced in an email to its pool users on Tuesday. The city opened Fuller Park pool last summer at a very limited capacity for lap swimming to ensure social distancing while the Buhr and Vets pools remained closed. In order to provide safe programming this year, swim lessons and day camps will take place at designated pools. All three pools will be offering family spaces and lap lanes by reservation as well as bungee swimming opportunities at Fuller and Buhr. (City of Ann Arbor)Reservation systemAfter receiving considerable feedback over challenges with last year’s reservation system at Fuller Park Pool, the new system aims to improve user experience.
Judge denies injunction request by MSU women’s swimmers
EAST LANSING, Mich. – A federal judge has denied a request by members of Michigan State’s women’s swimming and diving team for an injunction in their attempt to prevent the school from dropping the program. AdThe request for a preliminary injunction was filed last month and sought to restrain the school from eliminating the women’s varsity swimming and diving team — or any other women’s teams or athletic participation opportunities. The plaintiffs contended Michigan State was in violation of Title IX and had a history of failing to comply with Title IX’s athletic participation opportunity requirements. Michigan State announced in October it was dropping swimming and diving teams for men and women after the 2020-21 season, citing a financial crisis. Iowa recently said it wouldn't drop its women's swimming and diving program after it had been among four sports the school planned to eliminate.
Michigan swim clubs in limbo as pandemic limits access to indoor pools
BLOOMFIELD HILLS, Mich. – Swimming is one of the safest athletic activities during the pandemic, but some who practice the sport feel stuck. This situation has some local swim clubs left with very few options. While girls high school swimming just wrapped up, Michigan club teams swim all year round. Justine Murdock who swims for Atlantis swimming club never thought she would have trouble finding a place to practice. Her coach says swim practice is safe and socially distant but the problem is most pool club teams that practice in Michigan are in high schools which have been closed.
‘Let us compete’: U-M student athletes call to lift COVID shutdown
ANN ARBOR – A coalition of student athletes at the University of Michigan are calling for the 14 day shutdown of athletics to be lifted. Now, student athletes are speaking out and have launched a petition to MDHHS to resume practices and competitions. We trust the guidance and leadership of those in charge of the health and safety of Michigan student-athletes. Given the University’s knowledge of the situation surrounding the athletic department, should a total shutdown have been necessary, it should have come from the University of Michigan leaders. The student-athletes at the University of Michigan stand united in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and keeping every member of our community safe.
Michigan high school sports practices suspended for COVID-19 testing
LANSING, Mich. – The Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) announced on Tuesday that it will suspend practices for football, volleyball and girls swimming and diving immediately after receiving requirements for the state’s pilot rapid testing program. “The MHSAA also is working to update dates of competition to better reflect the testing schedule. The MDHHS will conduct webinars on Dec. 28 and 29 to train school personnel who will be involved in the testing process. Team practices could resume as early as Dec. 30 once the first tests have been administered. If schools are delayed in the start of testing, they may begin practice once individuals have had one negative test.
Family, community stunned over South Lyon high school swimming coach’s sudden death
SOUTH LYON, Mich. – A young swimming coach from South Lyon East High School died suddenly over the weekend. Kacie Van Buskirk was a swimming and academic all-American and left South Lyon East High School with half a dozen records. Kacie Van Buskirk married the love of her life in August. First, as a record-breaking, award-winning athlete for the South Lyon East Cougars and then as an assistant coach for her high school swim team. On Saturday, Kacie Van Buskirk and her husband spent the evening with her parents.
Michigan high school sports now suspended under new state COVID order
The Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) has suspended its fall tournaments in response to a new public health order issued by state health officials on Sunday. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services issued the restrictions Sunday evening, and Michigan Gov. “We understand the need for action, and we will explore all options to complete our Fall tournaments when restrictions are lifted," reads a statement from Uyl. However, now all high schools in the state of Michigan cannot offer in-person classes under the order. At an event with 100 people, risk levels in pretty much every Michigan county surpasses 80%, including some at 99%, like Kent and Calhoun counties.
Ann Arbor Public Schools postpones start of winter sports season
ANN ARBOR – Superintendent of Ann Arbor Public Schools, Jeanice Kerr Swift, announced on Thursday that the winter sports season will be delayed until January due to concerns over COVID-19. “Participation in indoor practices and competitions during a public health pandemic comes with a risk to the health and safety of those involved.”The announcement comes two weeks after Swift urged the Michigan High School Athletic Association in a public letter to postpone the winter sports season. Since Swift’s original letter on Oct. 30, new county and statewide cases have skyrocketed, breaking numerous one-day infection records. “Don’t wait for a call from the Health Department,” Jimena Loveluck, health officer for Washtenaw County Health Department, said in a statement. Schools across Metro Detroit have begun to shift from in-person to remote learning due to the surge in new COVID-19 cases.
Ann Arbor YMCA creates dedicated pool time for LGBTQ community
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Starting Friday, members of Ann Arbor’s LGBTQ community and their families can take part in the Y’s new Out to Swim program. Taking place between 7:30-8:30 p.m. on Fridays, the dedicated swim time was created in response to requests from LGBTQ youth. It offers a welcoming space and opportunities for community members to socialize, according to a release by Ann Arbor YMCA. “At the Ann Arbor Y, we strive to ensure that everyone, regardless of age, race, gender, gender identity, gender expression, income, faith, sexual orientation or cultural background has the opportunity to live life to its fullest,” Ann Arbor YMCA President and CEO Toni Kayumi said in the release. Kayumi said a dedicated swim time was discussed when the Y’s leadership team asked local LGBTQ youth about equity and inclusion programs they wanted at the Ann Arbor organization.
Michigan State University dropping swimming and diving teams
EAST LANSING, Mich. – Michigan State University is dropping swimming and diving teams for men and women after the 2020-21 season, officials said Thursday. “MSU athletics is facing a financial crisis unlike any we’ve ever seen in college athletics,” athletic director Bill Beekman and President Samuel Stanley Jr. said, citing the impact of COVID-19. Our worst-case scenario would more than double that number.”No one will lose a scholarship if they remain as students, the university said. Dropping the teams will improve the athletic department's long-term finances, MSU said. Unfortunately, this all led us to our inevitable decision,” Beekman and Stanley said.
Ann Arbor’s Fuller Park Pool to close on Sunday after unprecedented season
ANN ARBOR – For many residents, Fuller Park Pool’s reopening this summer restored a sense of normalcy and seasonal tradition, though things felt very different due to the coronavirus pandemic. To do this, they created a brand-new reservation system for the pool’s very limited lane supply and reconfigured its deck, and it didn’t come without its challenges. From painting the pool deck to indicate family and lap reservation spaces to safety protocols, she feels her team created a safe environment for guests. One particular challenge to Fuller Park Pool staff was creating a new reservation system with a limited amount of lap lanes. Fuller Park Pool is at 1519 Fuller Rd.
Swimmers caught in Lake Michigan rip current rescued
PARK TOWNSHIP, Mich. Two men have been rescued from Lake Michigan after they were caught in a rip current while swimming. The 34-year-old and 32-year-old men were at Holland State Park in western Michigans Park Township early Sunday evening when they were swept into deeper water, according to the Ottawa County sheriff's office. A jet ski operator was able to get one of the men to a pier where bystanders began cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Another jet ski operator was able to take the second man to a beach where he was evaluated by paramedics. The sheriffs office said a no-swimming notice was posted at the state park where three people have drowned this year.
Swimming advisories extended for parts of Lake Michigan
The National Weather Service has extended swimming advisories for parts of Lake Michigan as forecasters predict high waves and strong currents over the next two days. Lake, Porter and LaPorte counties in Indiana are under advisories. A 16-year-old boy went missing Sunday after he was pulled under the water in Portage, Indiana. The Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project on Sunday reported Lake Michigan had seen 32 drownings, and one of unknown condition, since Jan. 1, according to the newspaper. Read more: Swimmers caught in Lake Michigan rip current rescued
Ann Arbor YMCA launches free swim program for girls, collaborates to offer child development certificate
ANN ARBOR, Mich. The Ann Arbor YMCA has announced two programs intended to serve the Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti community. The second is a collaborative effort to create a child development certificate program that aims to help Washtenaw Community College students gain experience in the field of child development. Child Development Certificate Pipeline ProgramThe Y also announced that the Collaborative: Ypsilanti YMCA Child Development Center is partnering with Engage@EMU and the Washtenaw Community College Early Childhood Program to offer a child development certificate. The CDC Pipeline Program will give WCC students an opportunity to have an in-person practicum at the Collaborative: YMCA Child Development Center after four semesters of online study. Once students complete the program, they can work at a child development center or use program credits to pursue a baccalaureate degree in Early Childhood Education at Eastern Michigan University.
Family member saves 5-year-old boy from drowning at Pontiac hotel
PONTIAC, Mich. A family member helped save a young boy from drowning while at a hotel in Pontiac on Friday night. Police say the 5-year-old boy from Detroit was playing with other children at a Marriott Hotel when a family member noticed he had gone under water. The child was submerged in about four feet of water, officials said. A family member pulled the boy from the water and administered CPR right away, police said. The boy was transported to the hospital and is in stable condition.
Pool popularity surges in Michigan: Warning to keep kids safe
Parents need to be keeping safety top of mind while new pools are popping up across Michigan this summer. The pool sales and installation industry is booming with new pools going in at what feels like a record rate. Experts say parents need to know the proper safety protocols for children. Watch the full report above. Related: Pool safety devices: Do these actually work?
Fuller Park Pool in Ann Arbor to open July 1
ANN ARBOR, Mich. The City of Ann Arbor is set to re-open Fuller Park Pool on July 1 with limited capacity and operational changes. The number of visitors to the pool will be limited due to physical distancing requirements and executive order requirements by Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, according to a statement by Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation. Fuller Park Pool visitors will need to bring their own supplies as pool supplies, like life jackets, kickboards and deck chairs will not be available. Masters swimming programs, swim lessons and pool rentals will not be offered and the Fuller Park Pool water slide is still closed. Fuller Park Pool is at 1519 Fuller Rd.
Heres how 25 sports have been divided into high, moderate, low COVID-19 risk categories
DETROIT Will it be safe for children, high schoolers or anybody to play sports amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic? Experts have divided 25 popular sports into three categories: high, moderate and low risk. The National Federation of State High School Associations released their list, which is based on the amount of close, sustained contact, along with other factors. Oklahoma recently rejected a plan that would have required social distancing and allowed all high school sports to resume without restrictions. One idea being considered by many states would change the calendar to shift lower risk sports to fall and move higher risk ones to the spring.
Public swimming pools ordered to close across Southeast Michigan to mitigate spread of COVID-19
DETROIT – Health officials have ordered public swimming pools in Southeast Michigan to close to mitigate the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). The Detroit Health Department Wayne County Public Health Division, Oakland County Health Division and the Macomb County Health Department all issued orders requiring public swimming pools to close indefinitely. The aim of the closures is to reduce the potential spread of coronavirus. Pools pose a low risk of transmitting COVID-19, but health officials are concerned about people not being able to maintain social distancing. MORE: Inflatable pools boom in popularity as Metro Detroit public pools remain closedRead the full press release below: