By DAYNA WORCHEL

and BRIAN PEARSON

Staff Writers

 

ith the hot weather already kicking into high gear, swimming pools, splash pads, area lakes, water parks and state parks will soon be packed with people seeking relief from the heat.

But one city of Tyler pool hasn't been able to open because not enough lifeguards have been hired, Debbie Isham, city special events and recreation manager, said last week.

"We are still recruiting lifeguards to be able to open up the Woldert Park Pool," she said. The positions pay $9.25 an hour and all applicants must be certified in lifesaving and CPR-first aid, she said. Those who are interested may apply at www.cityoftyler.org.

The Faulkner Park sprayground has been open since May 1 and the Fun Forest Pool opened on June 1. The Fun Forest pool is the only outdoor Olympic-sized pool in East Texas, Ms. Isham said.

"Fun Forest Pool was recently professionally repainted and looks like the Olympic training pool it was designed to be over 70 years ago," she said.

The included list is not inclusive of all summer swimming opportunities in the area.

Note: a parent or legal guardian must register all children younger than 18 with the pool manager before entrance into the city pools during pool hours.

 

CITY OF TYLER

 

FUN FOREST POOL AND

SPRAYGROUND

900 N. Glenwood Blvd., 903-531-1363

Admission: Free

Hours: Tuesday, 1 to 6 p.m., lap swim 6 to 8 p.m.; Wednesday, 1 to 6 p.m.; Thursday, 1 to 6 p.m., lap swim 6 to 8 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 1 to 7 p.m.

Fun Forest Pool is open from June 1 through Aug. 10. Trained lifeguards are on duty. Dates for Spray ground area rentals at Fun Forest are very limited. For Fun Forest Spray ground reservations call (903) 531-1214 for availability.

Fun Forest Pool is open through Aug. 10. Trained lifeguards are on duty.

Dates for sprayground area rentals at Fun Forest are very limited. For Fun Forest sprayground reservations, call 903-531-1214 for availability.

 

FAULKNER PARK

SPRAYGROUND

410 W. Cumberland Road, Tyler

Open to the public daily from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., until cold weather. The sprayground is not available for rent.

Contact Parks Administration at 903-531-1370.

 

TYLER YMCA

225 S. Vine Avenue, Tyler, 75702, 903-593-7327. Non-members

Day passes are $5. Pool hours vary throughout the week. Access a pool schedule online at tylerymca.org.

 

WATER PARKS

 

WATER PARK AT THE VILLAGES

Silverleaf Resorts, 18270 Singing Wood Lane, Flint

Phone: 903-534-8400

Hours of summer operation: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily

 

GREAT WOLF LODGE

100 Great Wolf Drive, Grapevine, is open daily from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

A room reservation at the lodge is required for access to the water park. For reservations call 800-693-9653.

 

SPLASH KINGDOM

Splash Kingdom, 18814 Interstate 20, also has the usual water-park attractions such as a wave pool, meandering river and other tube rides. Surf music mixes with contemporary Christian tunes on the speakers.

Hours: Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. through Aug. 26. Saturdays: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sundays: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. through Labor Day. For more information, call 903- 567-0044 or visit splashkingdomwaterpark.com.

 

RIVERS, LAKES AND

SWIMMING HOLES

 

LAKE TYLER

The designated swimming areas are: Concession No. 1/Lake Tyler Marina

From Texas Highway 110 in Whitehouse, go east 2 miles on Farm-to-Market Road 346. Turn left on Tyler West Dam Road and follow to marina entrance at the near end of the dam.

Two 2-lane boat ramps with parking for 50 vehicles

$3 launch fee (no fee to swim)

Open all year

Operated by private concession, 903-839-4800

 

HILL CREEK PARK

Take Texas Highway 64 east from Tyler. Turn south on Farm-to-Market Road 848 and then east on South Hill Creek Road. Go about 2 miles and look for park on the left.

Two-lane concrete ramp with parking for 25 vehicles; piers for loading boats

No fee required

Open all year

Operated by city of Tyler Water Utility, 903-939-2724

 

Tyler State Park

Lake swimming in an unsupervised swimming area.

789 Park Road 16, Tyler. Phone: 903-597-5338.

Things to do: Activities include picnicking; camping, boating (motors allowed, 5 mph speed limit), boat rentals, fishing, birding, hiking, mountain biking, lake swimming (in unsupervised swimming area), and nature study.

Equipment rental: The Texas State Park Store has year-round boat rentals. Canoes, paddle boats, kayaks, bike boats and jon boats, are available daily through Labor Day. Boat rentals are available Wednesday through Sunday, from Labor Day to Memorial Day. For more information, contact the store directly at 903-592-6790.

 

TONKAWA SPRINGS

Local for years have known about this picturesque swimming hole north or Nacogdoches, but an RV park wasn't built here until 2001.The Camp Tonkawa Springs RV park has 62 pull-through sites, eight back-in sites and 10 tent sites for the hardier campers, although there is free Wi-Fi available, large restrooms and laundry, according to its Facebook page. The campground also has recreational rooms and pavilion for rent. Guineas and Fallow and Sitka deer roam the grounds.

The spring-fed pond, with white sand seen on the bottom, stays at a chilly 68 degrees year-round, much like Barton Springs in Austin. The website swimmingholes.org lists this as one of the best swimming spots in Texas.

According to the its website, the 50 acres of Camp Tonkawa was in a land grant in the 1800s to a Native American. Camp Tonkawa later was called Acre Mill Pond, with a spring-powered grist mill on site. In the late 1980s, Ozarka Water Co. leased the water rights on the property but vacated years later. Camp Tonkawa sat vacant for years, but people still used it as a swimming hole.

The RV park is at 4675 County Road 153 in Garrison.

For more information, visit camptonkawa.com or call 936-564-8888.

 

ATHENS SCUBA PARK

Since 1987, Athens Scuba Park has been a safe and relaxing location for divers to come out and spend a day or a weekend away from the city.

The spring-fed warm waters boast an average visibility of 35 feet that can peak at 70 feet. The lake's depth is from 20 to 35 feet with the park facilities designed for maximum safety & enjoyment for divers. There are 11 diving docks with shaded pavilions for sun & rain protection, hot/cold showers with shampoo and conditioner in the bathhouse and camping areas for all size groups. For more information, visit athenscubapark.com.

500 N. Murchison St., Athens, phone: 903-675-5762. Hours: Wednesday to Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

 

CRYSTAL SPRINGS BEACH

Like Tonkawa Springs, swimmingholes.org has this spot near Texarkana listed as one of the state's best swimming holes. It has a spring-fed pool, water rides and 350 feet of white beach sand. It's located near Maud. The facility boasts swimming, diving and swinging in addition to camping.

Call 903-585-5246. The address is 585 U.S. Highway 67, Maud.

 

Lake Hawkins

Only about 25 miles from Tyler, this gem has a sandy beach, 41 RV sites, tent camping, fishing, hiking, a boat ramp and a "family friendly" environment, according to the Lake Hawkins RV Park website.

Call 903-769-4545 for more information or visit lakehawkinsrvpark.com.

 

There is no public swimming on Lake Palestine.

Recommended for you