McCarren Park Pool: A 12 Step Guide

1- The night before the big day, freeze a large bottle of water in your freezer.

2- Go to bed.

3- Wake up and get some breakfast and coffee.  There is no food or drink available for purchase at the pool and you don’t want your time cut short by hunger pangs.

4- Bring a gym lock.  They will not let you in without one. There are no bags allowed on the pool deck.  Everything is to be locked up.

5- If it’s the weekend, get over to the pool by 10AM.  It opens at 11AM, and you want to be one of the first people in. Waiting an hour isn’t the end of the world.  The line is mostly shady, but there are some sunny spots, so wear sunscreen.

6- 11AM!  And you are about to walk in!  Have your lock in your hand, and either your bathing suit on, or in your hand.  This will speed up the whole line process.

7- When you get into the locker room, pull out your towel, your sunscreen, and your frozen water bottle.  If you have a magazine, bring that too.  No shirts unless it’s a “plain white tee” and no hats are allowed unless they are “all white.”  That’s it.  There are ABSOLUTELY NO CELL PHONES ALLOWED on the deck.

8- Next, you have to shower, but your hands are full of stuff so tell the shower attendant you are going to put all your stuff down outside the shower, smile, then shower.  Pick all your stuff back up then head out to the pool area.

9- Where are you going to sit? Lots of the young people tend to hang out on the steps and in the back right corner, which is the best viewing area. Half the fun of the pool is the people watching.  An extra bonus is this corner is farthest away from the kiddy pool.

10- Relax and enjoy yourself until 2:45 when they kick you out to “clean the pool.” And remember, no horseplay of any kind or you will get the whistle!

11- Go get some lunch!

12- Do not attempt to go back to the pool at 4PM.  The line starts forming at 2PM, a 2-hour wait!  This is when teenagers try to get in and there’s nothing worse than a pack of teenagers bunched up together, hot and anxious.  Being smooshed in with the teens will ruin your day.  They yell a lot.  You’ve been warned.

About Michael Glennon

Producer living in Greenpoint for 6 years