Chicago’s beaches are officially open for business.
Memorial Day weekend traditionally marks the beginning of beach season, which runs through Labor Day, Sept. 4.
The Chicago Park District has been actively recruiting lifeguards to staff beaches and pools, which are opening in two phases, beaches first.
Of the more than 1,500 lifeguard applicants, many are still fulfilling the requirements needed to gain certification, the district said. Pools are expected to open June 23.
Here’s what you need to know before you hit the lakefront.
Hours: Beaches are open daily for swimming 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., when lifeguards are present. Red flags, posted after hours, indicate no swimming allowed.
Locations: Juneway, Rogers, Howard and Fargo beaches remain closed for swimming due to erosion. Swimmers can access the water at nearby Marion Mahony Griffin Beach.
Safety: The Park District is introducing beach safety ambassadors this year. Ambassadors will be posted at the busiest beaches — Osterman, North Avenue, Oak Street, Montrose and 31st Street — and will assist with first aid, maintenance and enforcing beach regulations.
Flag system: Colored flags posted on beaches signal the beach status. Green means swimming is permitted, weather conditions are safe and water quality is good. Yellow indicates caution; weather conditions are unpredictable and water quality is poor. Red means no swimming, either due to dangerous weather or dangerous water quality.