New Keyser Parks & Rec commission has plans for summer

Liz Beavers
Tribune Managing Editor
Keyser's John R. Shelton Swimming Pool will open for the summer on Saturday, June 5.

KEYSER - Keyser’s Parks and Recreation Committee is already planning a busy summer, with the pool to be open and concerts back in the amphitheater.

“We’re really excited to get the people outdoors; it’s been a tough year,” said newly-appointed Keyser City Council member Ron Metcalf, appointed to serve as the city’s parks and rec commissioner.

Metcalf announced Wednesday that he had met with members of the all-volunteer Save the Keyser Pool Committee, and they had decided the John R. Shelton Swimming Pool will officially open for the season Saturday, June 5, and remain open through Monday, Aug. 30.

Shuttered by COVID-19 last summer, the pool has not been open for the entire summer for the past several years.

Metcalf said the city will launch several promotions this year which should “generate some excitement” and help keep the pool up and running.

First, they are offering a special “Book a Pool Party” promotion from now through May 31. During that time, anyone renting the pool for a party can do so for $150 rather than the regular $350 cost.

Also, if any business or civic organization would like to sponsor a day at the pool, and signs up to do so before May 31, that cost will drop from $1,000 to $500.

Sponsored pool days result in free admission for everyone coming to the pool that day.

The city is also currently taking applications for lifeguards to work at the pool, and interested persons age 15 and up may pick up an application at the city office. Fifteen-year-olds must also obtain a work release form from their school.

Lifeguards do not have to be pre-certified; the city will take care of training.

Holding up a copy of Gov. Justice’s reopening guidelines, Metcalf said he wanted to assure everyone that the city would be following state COVID protocol in opening and operating the pool this summer.

At nearby Brooks Park, three concerts have already been scheduled - May 21 with Highland Grass, June 18 with High Mountain Bluegrass, and Sept. 17, when Highland Grass will return.

In addition, the first of what is planned as a series of outdoor exercise classes is also scheduled for April 24 from 10-11 a.m. at Brooks Park.

“Two young ladies in our community have graciously donated their time and talents to conduct these classes,” Metcalf said, adding that the first class is cardio stretching.

“I’ll be there, and I’d like to challenge my fellow council members to come out and take the class,” he said.

The cardio stretch class and other classes to come will be offered free of charge.