Aquatic centers and spraygrounds offer relief from the heat 

Douglass Park Sprayground. 901 E. Frederick Douglass Ave.
  • Douglass Park Sprayground. 901 E. Frederick Douglass Ave.

The Oklahoma City Parks and Recreation Department has 17 park spraygrounds and two aquatic centers open for families to enjoy this summer.

The spraygrounds are playgrounds with water toys to keep friends and families cool during the summertime heat.

“You have all kinds of interactive water toys where people can go and basically get wet and splash in a fun and playful way,” said Jennifer McClintock, public information and marketing manager at OKC Parks & Recreation.

The spraygrounds have misters, sprayers, buckets that fill with water and dump and bubblers, which are little fountains that come up from the ground.

The toys can be activated by the push of a button and run on a cycle to conserve water, which comes from the same source as the residential water.

Covered picnic tables offer parents supervising their children an escape from the sun.

“What we’ve found … is that people are going and they’re going for hours … They will bring coolers and they’ll stay for hours and really make an experience of it. They’ve also been a great place for neighbors and the community to really come together,” McClintock said.

Admittance to the spraygrounds is free, and they are open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily through Sept. 7.

Douglass Park Sprayground. 901 E. Frederick Douglass Ave.
  • Douglass Park Sprayground. 901 E. Frederick Douglass Ave.

The family aquatic centers offer swimming pools with zero-depth entry for parents with small children, large water slides and many of the same toys featured at the spraygrounds.

Full-service concession stands offer patrons items like soft drinks, pizza and pretzels, and patrons can enjoy their concessions in lounge chairs and in shade under umbrellas.

Earlywine Family Aquatic Center, 3101 SW 119th St., also has a 40-foot plunger slide.

“You get on a little raft and you drop down about 15 feet into what I would describe as a large bowl, and it swirls you around like a sink drain. And then it drops you down again and shoots you into a tunnel about another 20 feet,” McClintock said.

Swimming lessons are offered for all ages and swimming abilities at the aquatic centers for $30 per person. Each session includes eight one-hour lessons.

click to enlarge Douglass Park Sprayground. 901 E. Frederick Douglass Ave.
  • Douglass Park Sprayground. 901 E. Frederick Douglass Ave.

The aquatic centers are open 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday-Wednesday and 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday-Saturday until August 13, when the aquatic centers are only open during select dates.

Daily admittance to the family aquatic centers is $7 for people 48 inches and taller, $6 for people under 48 inches tall and $4 for patrons who aren’t swimming.

Season passes are available for $60 per person or $180 for a family of four. Season pass holders can beat the crowds with an added bonus of early entry at 11 a.m. Monday through Friday.

Earlywine Family Aquatic Center has a capacity of 500 swimmers, and the center is often busy, which can create wait times.

Will Rogers Family Aquatic Center, 3201 N. Grand Blvd., opened in 2001 and was the first aquatic center in the city. This center has 1- and 3-meter diving boards.

For summer 2016, improvements will be made to indoor dressing rooms and bathrooms and some pool play features will be upgraded.

Children under 8 years old must be accompanied by an adult at both the aquatic centers and the spraygrounds.


Go Outside Spraygrounds

10 a.m.-8 p.m.

Through Sept. 7

Douglass Park

901 N. Frederick Douglass Ave.

Lippert Park

5500 S. Shartel Ave.

McKinley Park

1300 N. McKinley Ave.

Minnis Lakeview Park

12518 NE 36th St.

Schilling Park

537 SE 25th St.

Wiley Post Park

2021 S. Robinson Ave.

For a complete list of city spraygrounds, visit okc.gov/parks/pools. For more information, call 297-2211.


Earlywine Family Aquatic Center

12 p.m.-8 p.m. Sunday-Wednesday and 12 p.m.-9 p.m. Thursday-Saturday

3101 SW 119 St. 297-1418 $3-$7

Will Rogers Family Aquatic Center

12 p.m.-8 p.m. Sunday-Wednesday and 12 p.m.-9 p.m. Thursday-Saturday

3201 N. Grand Blvd. 297-1451 $3-$7

Season passes are $60-$180.


Print headline: Water city,OKC opens aquatic parks so residents can escape the summer sun.

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