Photo: The Underwood Pool from 2019
Responding to the re-opening of public places as state COVID-19 restricts are being pulled back, the Belmont Recreation Commission unanimously voted on Thursday, June 10 to open the Underwood Pool to 100 percent capacity on Wednesday, June 23 with an unlimited number of family and individual passes (aka tags) for residents seeking to cool off this summer.
Residents interested in applying for a pass or more should go to the Recreation Department webpage.
Due to the lifting of the restrictions, patrons will no longer need to pre-register to attend the pool at specific two-hour blocks of time. According to Rec Department Director and Assistant Town Manager Jon Marshall, two green areas will be sectioned off and have spaces marked off “for people who are a little less comfortable can go to.”
As of Friday, June 11, any resident wanting a pass will receive one with the department limiting the number of non-residential passes to those on the waiting list.
So far this season, the Belmont Rec Department has issued 598 family, 104 individual and 62 senior passes – a total of 2,600 people – as the town had prepared to open the pool at 50 percent of capacity. It also has 110 non-residents on a waiting list, according to Brandon Fitts, rec department assistant director. In 2019, the town issued 1,050 tags.
Residents who purchased tags in the belief the pool would be at 50 percent and wish to cancel their passes will only have until June 21 to receive a full refund. Passes will also be sold at a reduced rate later in the season. The cost of passes are $305 for families; $110 for individuals and $50 for seniors.
Films on the Field
At Monday’s meeting, Fitts also announced a free summer-long movie series sponsored by the Rec Department and the Belmont Council of Aging. Using a generous donation from a Belmont couple, the Rec Department has purchased a projector/sound system and screen which will be set up at the Town Field baseball diamond on Thursday evenings.
“We worked really hard with a number of town departments to make this all a reality,” said Fitts, saying the department will screen seven family friendly movies. The events will take place from 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. running from July 8 to August 19.
It will be an opportunity for residents to come to the field and bring a picnic dinner [Remember: Town Field is a Carry In, Carry Out play area so bring a bag to remove any refuse]. The town will also hire a group to bring games, set up basketball hoops and “Gaga ball” pits for kids to play until the film begins at 8 p.m. Residents will also be able to use the restroom facilities at the adjacent Beech Street Center. One commissioner suggested “off the record” bringing food trucks to add some culinary choices to the night.
Fitts also said since the sound system will be owned by the Rec Department, there are opportunities to use the equipment for other events around town such as having music at the Underwood Pool, special events, and a possible “Rock the Rink” skating party at the “Skip” in which skaters circle the ice as high school bands perform.
The movies for this summer are the live version of “Aladdin,” the “Parent Trap” with Lindsay Lohan, “The Secret Life of Pets,” “Honey I Shrunk the Kids,” “Finding Nemo” and the movie version of “Grease.”