Dive into Summer Fun at a Prince William Pool

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By Colleen Kilday

As the blooming grass gives way to sizzling tarmac, even the most water-weary Prince William residents are
tempted to plunge into the depths of the nearest body of water. While the beach is a bit of a drive, there is no shortage of the next best thing: pools. Many facilities also offer a variety of swim and water safety classes to ensure all can safely splash about.

PWCS Aquatics Center

The newest aquatics facility in the county, located at Colgan High School on Dumfries Road, offers the best of both worlds to its visitors with both a leisure and a competition pool. Guests can drop down the 20’ tall water slide — the largest indoor water slide in the area — or get soaked under the leisure pool’s dump
buckets and spray rings. The center, however, is best known for its water safety and swim lesson offerings.

“We are the only aquatics facility operated by Prince William County Schools and the only to offer a free learn-to-swim program to PWCS second graders,” said Aquatics Manager Allen Dunn. “The program, Water Safety School, provides free swimming and water safety instruction to our second grade students during the school day; in a typical year, approximately 4,000 students participate in the program.”

Swim lessons are also offered to visitors aged six months and up with a ratio of one American Red Cross-certified instructor to six participants or less. Additional information on the center’s swim lessons can be found at lessons.pwcsaquatics.com. Those who have already refined their water safety expertise have a place at the center, too: aspiring lifeguards and swim instructors are encouraged to join the Aquatics Center team by filling out a job interest form at jobs.pwcsaquatics.com.

The PWCS Aquatics Center is located at 13833 Dumfries Road in Manassas, Door #25.

Manassas Park Community Center

The Manassas Park Community Center natatorium is an indoor, NCAA short course-certified pool featuring eight 25-yard lanes and perfect for any level of swimmer looking to strengthen their skills. The independent-minded learner can utilize the center’s kickboards, pull buoys, and life jackets, while those seeking a little more hands-on assistance can choose from a variety of classes. From the basic fundamentals of water safety to American Red Cross Lifeguard classes, the center has a class tailored to
meet the unique needs of each age group and level of proficiency.

Swim, water safety, and group exercise classes are viewable at manassasparkcommunitycenter.com/aquatics.

The Manassas Park Community Center Natatorium is located at 99 Adams Street in Manassas Park.

Waterworks Waterpark

Swimming isn’t just an important safety skill; it can open up a world of fun, too.

Waterworks Waterpark in Dale City is made for the fun-seeking family with the largest splash pad in Northern Virginia, accented by giant water-shooting flowers, dump buckets, and more. Older kids can attempt one of several aquatic obstacles or plummet down the tower slides; while little ones can splash in the toddler wading pool featuring slides that will prepare them for the larger ones in summers to come.

The park provides more than just fun for the family — it also offers the opportunity for teens to apply their hard-earned swim skills and earn some spending money for the summer. Those 15 years of age or older by June 15 can apply to be lifeguards by signing up for a swim test at swimtest.pwcparks.com.

“We provide all the training to get them certified as lifeguards,” said Amir Wenrich, Assistant Director of Marketing, PWC Parks and Recreation. “They just have to show up for a swim test, pass the swim test, fill out an application, and start working.”

Waterworks Waterpark is located at 5301 Dale Boulevard in Dale City.

Splash Down Waterpark

SplashDown Waterpark

Northernmost residents have an opportunity to put their swim skills to the test, too. As Northern Virginia’s largest waterpark, Splash Down Waterpark in Manassas is the perfect summer spot for the Prince William thrill-seeker. Visitors can barrel down three distinct types of slides like the dizzying Tropical Twister, speedy Cannonball slides or heart-racing 70-foot-tall Pipeline tower; but the park isn’t made only for aquatic daredevils.

Those seeking a bit more relaxation can grab an inflatable tube, float down the Lazy River, and soak up the sun. The 13-acre campus also features a sand volleyball court, tennis courts, and a playground. That might seem like a lot to cover in just one visit, but visitors need not fear running out of energy with four full-service concession stands on site.

Older kids who want to stay all day and then some are in luck as the park is also looking to hire lifeguards for the summer. To learn more, visit splashdownwaterpark.com.

Splash Down Waterpark is located at 7500 Ben Lomond Park Drive in Manassas.

Colleen Kilday is a journalist and technical writer who has written for a variety of local publications as well as aviation and financial journals.

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