Coronavirus

Denver Reopening Long-Closed Recreation Centers in May

Denver is reopening its rec centers.
Denver is reopening its rec centers. Nicole Daniels | Body & Glass Photography
With more and more Americans receiving vaccines, the City of Denver will soon begin reopening recreation centers and pools.

According to the just-announced schedule, on May 3 the weight rooms and cardio spaces in a handful of Denver's thirty recreation centers will open; access to fitness equipment will require reservations. At the same time, a few other recreation centers will start offering indoor classes and outdoor activities at a limited capacity.
And on June 7, eight of Denver's outdoor municipal pools will open for two months of aqua aerobics, lap swim, group swim lessons and open swim.

“We are elated to begin reopening some of our facilities and registered programming,” Happy Haynes, executive director of Parks and Recreation, says in a statement announcing the reopening schedule. “Our employees have gone above and beyond in preparing plans for a safe reopening to provide the community with quality amenities and healthy recreation opportunities in neighborhoods throughout the city.”

Denver's various youth day camps and sports camps will also start in June.


Denver shut down all of its recreation centers almost exactly one year ago because of rising COVID-19 counts. Parks have remained open throughout the pandemic, however. And thanks to the ease with which golfers can socially-distance, Denver municipal golf courses have also stayed open throughout much of the last year.

The move to reopen the city's recreation centers comes not long after Denver reopened nine of the Denver Public Library branches for limited hours of operation, starting March 9. The Central Library remains closed, though library staffers are aiming to open the first floor by early summer.

Recreation centers that will open for weight and cardio rooms starting May 3, as well as their hours:

Carla Madison Recreation Center: noon to 8 p.m.
Eisenhower Recreation Center: 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Green Valley Ranch Recreation Center: noon to 8 p.m.

Recreation centers that will open for classes and outdoor activities starting May 3:

Cook Park Recreation Center: 9 a.m. to  5 p.m.
Hiawatha Davis Jr. Recreation Center: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Highland Recreation Center: 8 a.m. to  4 p.m.
Platt Park Recreation Center: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Recreation centers that will be open for weight and cardio rooms on June 7:

Athmar Recreation Center: 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Montclair Recreation Center: 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Rude Recreation Center: Noon to 8 p.m.

More information about the reopenings can be found here.
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Conor McCormick-Cavanagh is a staff writer at Westword, where he covers a range of beats, including local politics, immigration and homelessness. He previously worked as a journalist in Tunisia and loves to talk New York sports.