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DCR: Hall Memorial Swimming Pool Won't Open This Summer in Stoneham

While Hall Memorial Swimming Pool may be closed in 2012, the wading pool will be open from June 23 to Aug. 26.

After taking into consideration several factors, the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) has decided not to open this summer, according to a DCR spokesperson.

"We are in fact not opening the Stoneham swimming pool for the 2012 season," wrote DCR spokesperson S.J. Port in an email to Stoneham Patch. "The wading pool...is open for the season" from June 23 to Aug. 26.

The closure of Hall Memorial Swimming Pool, located at 4 North Border Road, is expected to be "temporary, and the facility can be reopened when funding becomes available," according to Port.

"The decision to close the Stoneham swimming pool was not made lightly, and we at DCR recognize the affect on the communities involved," wrote Port. "However, given our limited resources and after careful consideration of all the options, the decision has been made to move forward with not opening this swimming pool in 2012.

"In making this decision, we evaluated the attendance at all facilities for the past four years and found that Stoneham was one of the lowest use pool facilities in terms of daily attendance. We also looked at its proximity to other facilities."

In 2011, the average daily attendance at Hall Memorial Swimming Pool was 62, the second lowest in the system, according to Port.

While Hall Memorial Swimming Pool may be closed, "DCR will keep the wading pool, playground and restrooms in Stoneham open to maintain a presence in the community," wrote Port.

What are the Alternatives?

Port suggested Stonehamites swim at two pools in nearby communities.

"... (49 Tremont St.) in Melrose has the bandwidth to absorb displaced swimmers from Stoneham. It also offers Learn to Swim programs, and is within two miles of the Stoneham pool," wrote Port. "Residents are also encouraged to visit the (108 Mountain Ave.) in Malden, which is within 10 minutes of the Stoneham pool (by car)."

Both pools will be open from June 23 to Aug. 26, and the open swim hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily, according to the DCR website.

Meanwhile, Stoneham's wading pool will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Sunday.

Bill Miller June 22, 2012 at 12:14 PM
The Patrick administration has been constantly cutting services to the residences of Massachusetts. State parks that have been open on Patriots Day every year, are now closed until later in the season. The Hall Pool we have all enjoyed forever is now closed. We have not stopped paying our taxes. The Patrick administration should not stop providing the services we deserve as residents of this state. The State Parks belong to the people. The Hall Pool belongs to the people. These are not Deval Patricks’ properties to reach into and take money from. It doesn’t take much online searching to see where Governor Patrick’s priorities lie. It’s not with the hard working, tax paying people like us in Stoneham.
Jeanne E. Craigie June 22, 2012 at 12:45 PM
Pretty sad..given all the land the DCR controls in Stoneham and we lose services and tax revenue from!! I would ask everyone with children to call your Representatives and Senators and have them right this yet another injustice to young Stoneham Families-Terrible news!!!!
OURSTATEPARKS June 22, 2012 at 12:48 PM
The PATRICK/MURRAY touts “unprecedented” commitment to making parks accessible, while at the same time devastating the park budgets, Closing/Under-staffed DCR facilities, reductions in camping season, reduction in number of park rangers and interpreters, reduced beach trash collection, reduction of services within Forest Bureau, and reduction of police details. “THE PATRICK/MURRAY” has cut the DCR budget by 23% since Fiscal Year 2008. That’s almost a quarter of funding lost in two years! Total spending (which includes staffing and opening our state parks on time) remains around one half of one percent of the entire $30.5 billion state budget. It was last at 1% of the budget in 2001. And, The PATRICK/MURRAY has again delayed the opening of our Massachusetts State Parks for 2012 – for the 3rd year in a row. Prior to PATRICK/MURRAY, parks were ALWAYS open to scouting organizations, families, fisherman, canoeists and kayakers by the Friday before our first long Massachusetts holiday weekend – PATRIOTS DAY – for working taxpaying families. A 60 million dollar payroll at the DCR and they can’t pay a ranger to unlock a gate! And if you camp - watch out for those old rotting picnic tables - loaded with bugs underneath!! Thanks DEVAL!! Keep spending all that money on the Gateway cities to teach the "YOOTS" about green energy.. while our parks rot!!
Patricia B June 22, 2012 at 01:34 PM
You know I read every day how the city of Boston manages to provide these type services for the inner city youth which is a good thing. But, it does seem lately that state revenues arent being equally distributed. Really, a Stoneham family should travel to Lawrence to swim? It's not like it's a 10 minute drive as the spokesperson seems to suggest. And I am sure the Malden pool is already at capacity. We need to contact Jason Lewis and Katherine Clarks office. The kids of Stoneham deserve this. Every time I drove by there, the pool seemed to be quite busy. This is more evidence that our tax dollars aren't being spent wisely.
Tricia June 22, 2012 at 02:00 PM
So, all the bus loads of kids that are dropped off, and all the local kids that use that pool and "Stoneham was one of the lowest use pool facilities in terms of daily attendance?" That is just INSANE! Come on people we need to do something about this. I have 2 kids who are VERY disappointed and I am sure there are other kids and families in this town who are outraged with this decision.
Paul O'Meara June 22, 2012 at 02:05 PM
@Patricia - You misread. It is the Lawrence Lloyd pool in Melrose.
Jeanne E. Craigie June 22, 2012 at 02:30 PM
Just called a local official and he is not happy--they by the way just found out on a by the way conversation!! Just called Katherine Clarks Office--not in--Jason Lewis Office --not in Commissioner Lambert--not in and now the Governor--not in--Stoneham Resident we must stop this from happening--we have more parking than our neighbors and a business establishment right next door for treats for the kids==what is wrong with this picture?? Another slap for Stoneham families and kids--call then now!!
Russ June 22, 2012 at 05:36 PM
If there is a pool within a couple of miles, with more services available, an argument can be made for consolidation. Government spending is not at all well controlled of late. On the other hand, good points have been made by all who raised the issue of providing more services in the city than in the Stoneham area. When services are reduced due to cost, they must be reduced for all.
Jeanne E. Craigie June 22, 2012 at 05:48 PM
Just heard back from Reps Office and Senators Office staff--trying to gather information...seriously! Why were we not told in PUBLIC..DCR controls 1/3 of our land--we are charged to go to that Zoo--$11 dollars isn't much?? Really if you have 4 kids and 2 adults that is a lot for a family--Stoneham Resident ought to have free admission programs for our residents--I have no young children but plenty of families do--advocate for this Town Citizens--Why are we always getting the short end..Also heard it will be resident only parking in Melrose-so I guess our kids walk from Stoneham--now that is really fair..it must be really hot because I am incensed over this ..Please call your State Rep and Senator and the Commisioner!
Jeanne E. Craigie June 22, 2012 at 06:01 PM
Why would they close our facility..their statistics have to be flawed--Last year that pool was closed most of the summer due to repairs!! No wonder attendance is down--and as far as fairness --Melrose has no parking, no restaurant next door--yet another way to have economic down turn when Friendy's closes--keep the kiddy pool open and let the older kids sweat really makes sense--and what about the Organizations that wanted to use it for field trips, sorry plan over buy a slip and slide. DCR punishes us again for the Hospital issue , the Ravine road issue..maybe they asked The Friends of the Fells for their opinion perhaps the chlorine was aggravating all the weeds!
Jeanne E. Craigie June 22, 2012 at 07:22 PM
Just had a long conversation with Senator Clark--she to her credit is going to find out how this happened. She is calling DCR Commissioner to ask why she was never notified ..a start but not a finish---it might not happen but it won't be without a fight--thank you Senator Clark for listening to me vent!
Mark Ouellette (Editor) June 22, 2012 at 07:55 PM
Hi folks, We'll have a follow-up story on Monday so make sure to visit Stoneham Patch to learn more about this situation.
Russ June 22, 2012 at 08:40 PM
... and all this while 25 to 30 elderly people in the area go without needed assistance for shopping and meals. Can you spell "prioritization"? Let's see ... swimming, food ... swimming, food ... swimming, food - I'm going with food for the elderly. They may not be able to vote but they do need to be fed.
Mark June 22, 2012 at 10:11 PM
This will only force the kids to swim in Spot Pond. Speaking of Spot Pond, who thought it was a good idea to charge us $30 bucks an hour to rent a row boat on a tax payer funded piece of property? I think Stoneham residents/children should be able to use that pond for free.
Mark June 22, 2012 at 10:15 PM
Jean while speaking with Lewis & Clark find out how they can find $93 Million to fund Illegal Health Care, $68 Million to fund a Shrine to Ted Kennedy and another countless millions to hire interpreters for children of Illegals in the Everett, Lynn, Chelsea et al school systems. All the while short changing Stoneham kids, seniors and vets!
mark patterson June 22, 2012 at 10:15 PM
One thing has nothing to do with the other.If they need assistance they should call their local town hall or senior center for information on how to get the help they need.The pool issue as about a suburban town whose taxpayers expect a little something in return for their money.Why not close a pool in Lawrence where there are few taxpayers and many receipients of Socialist benefits.The working,taxpaying people are fed up with getting nothing in return.I'll bet Obama's Aunt Zoonie has a pool nearby her subsidized housing project.
Wallyworld June 23, 2012 at 02:07 AM
This definitely stinks but what do you expect when people don't want to pay any more in taxes. Income and sales tax revenues are done from the recession and the costs facing town government and the state government keep rising (especially healthcare). I've heard that DCR's budget has been cut by more than 25% over the last few years. And don't blame this on illegal immigrants, that has nothing to do with any of this. And, in terms of Stoneham getting the short end of the stick, what about the fact that the state is planning to reimburse Stoneham for more than half of the cost of the new middle school. That actually seems pretty generous compared to reimbursement rates in many other communities.
mark patterson June 23, 2012 at 02:50 PM
You don't think illegal immigration is a major reason for financial problems in this country? They cost billions in health care,policing,prison,jobs,and education.The liberals want the workers to pay more and more for the non-workers.I,and millions of other Americans have worked hard our whole lives only to see our labors given away to generation after generation of layabouts.If they can't feed em',don't breed em'.My parents raised 8 (yeah,EIGHT) hard-working,taxpaying citizens without a damn penny from the Catholic Church or anyone else! My father was in WWII,I had two brothers in Vietnam,and we have people coming into this great republic and crapping on us and acting like WE owe THEM something! Illegal immigration has everything to do with this.I am a firefighter and EMT and have seen people and things that make me sick to be a taxpayer while they do zip.They mock our Constitution and fly their flags while burning ours.It's time for the Socialist-Democrats to crawl back under the rock where they came from.Helping people who want to help themselves is the American way.People like Aunt Zoonie should be put on a flight back to Kenya with her "This is God's country and they have to take care of me" attitude.She should take her useless nephew with her.
Bill Miller June 23, 2012 at 03:35 PM
This is a good wake up call for local tax payers. When people hear about the millions spent on illegal immigrants they think it’s just a case of inevitable tax hikes. When the government decides it’s too risky to raise taxes they steal services from the tax payers (you). It’s been going on for years, but always to someone else. Now it’s happening to you. Where do you think it will end? It will end with enforcement of immigration laws. We’ve got to the point where the term illegal gets thrown around so much has no meaning. Illegal should be something that is not tolerated in society instead of an excepted way of life with benefits. The money spent on this issue comes out of your pay check. It will continue to affect your quality of life until you do something.
Charlie McGrath June 23, 2012 at 07:15 PM
Is swimming in Spot Pond even allowed? And as for $30 an hour? What a ripoff....We as Stoneham residents should get to use it for free....if not at least discounted....
Jeanne E. Craigie June 27, 2012 at 12:13 AM
Just got back from the Selectmen's Meeting--Huge thanks to Senator Katherine Clark and Rep. Jason Lewis and all our Selectmen especially Bob Sweeney --THE POOL WILL REOPEN within 3 weeks!!! It does pay to call your delegation and your Town Officials..next time you see them say THANK YOU!! Have a safe summer swimming and please use it frequently!!!! Nice going everyone great effort with your concerns!!

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