With only 55% of lifeguard positions filled, the Chicago Park District is limiting access to “underutilized” beaches in order to redeploy staff to neighborhood pools, 37 of which will open July 5.
Chicago Park District
More than 55% of the department’s 587 seasonal lifeguard positions were vacant as of Thursday, according to Chicago Park District data, eight days after officials announced the city’s 49 outdoor pools would not open on schedule — leaving Chicagoans to swelter during a record-breaking heat wave.
Park District Superintendent Rosa Escareño joined “Chicago Tonight” to discuss the ongoing shortage and acknowledged that some neighborhood pools may not be able to open at all if the Park District can’t fill some 300 lifeguard positions.
Chicago Park District officials acknowledged to WTTW News that it had not been able to hire enough lifeguards to allow its 49 outdoor pools to open as scheduled on June 24, blaming a “national shortage” and “several other factors.”
“We need lifeguards NOW and are offering great incentives to anyone who is a strong swimmer and interested in keeping the public safe,” Rosa Escareño, Chicago Park District general superintendent, said in a statement.
Legislation signed Thursday by Gov. J.B. Pritzker now mandates the placement of rescue equipment along Lake Michigan access points, including piers.
Memorial Day weekend traditionally marks the start of Chicago’s summer beach and boating season. Here’s what to know before you hit the sand and water.
The warm weather has finally arrived, and that means it's time to start planning your summer activities. The Chicago Park District opened registration at the park district website for all its summer programs, including the one many parents have been waiting for — day camps.
Rosa Escareño planned to retire in July as commissioner of the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection after 30 years with the city, but agreed to lead the beleaguered park district after the scandal erupted.
DuSable Park has been a park in name only since Mayor Harold Washington dedicated the site, at the confluence of the Chicago River and Lake Michigan, in 1987. Wednesday, a design team was selected to bring the vision to life.
The Chicago Park District’s state-of-the art track and field center at Gately Park in Pullman, which opened in 2021, owes its existence to decades of pushing and prodding by the late Conrad Worrill. Now it’s named for him.
Guien the agave continues to amaze. She’s now topped 20 feet and is fast approaching the Garfield Park Conservatory’s glass ceiling. Staff are trying to get the plant to slow her spurt.
If confirmed by the Chicago City Council, Andrea Telli would be the first person to join the Chicago Park District Board of Commissioners after a scandal ousted the district’s top leadership.
The Jackson Park Advisory Council has canceled its February meeting due to concerns related to COVID-19, delaying an anticipated vote on controversial changes to the group's bylaws.
The Jackson Park Advisory Council is proposing a change to its bylaws that would raise the bar in terms who’s considered a voting member. Critics say the move is designed to limit input from “newcomers,” and they want the Chicago Park District to intervene.