The newest Page in the RESC story

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The newest Page in the RESC story

Journeys into River Edge

The River Edge Swim Club has been around for plenty of summers since its opening in 1961. But there’s never been a summer quite like this at the grounds besides the banks of the Hackensack River.

For a place used to dealing with issues such as running children, food outside the picnic area, a poop crisis closing the pool or geese on the grounds, the challenges this year are totally new and more profound. They pose potential threats to club operations and to the individuals that make it up.

Even as this pool and others around the county have had to overcome fiscal challenges due to changing demographics and lifestyle preferences, those challenges are nothing compared to what is being confronted in this Summer of Covid-19.

The pool is planning on opening – but not without restrictions being imposed - a combination of what is required by health officials and what is needed to try to keep staff and members safe.

This year there will be no swim team, no swim lessons, no evening hours, or other activities. Moreover, numbers allowed in will be limited. Masks and regular multiple cleanings of facilities will be a constant.

It’s a new reality - a far cry from last year and especially different from the types of issues that faced the pool in its first golden era of the mid-1960’s, shortly after it opened on what before was the site of a sewage treatment plant.

In those early days the pool was a victim of its own success. There was more than a few dissatisfied around town who felt that the pool was inaccessible as membership was limited to 400 families. A long wait list existed. In fact, so long that by 1975 plans were drawn and were quite under way to form a second swim club, the Old Bridge Swim Club, to accommodate those who could not get into the River Edge Swim Club. This second pool club was to be located just north of River Edge Road. Passions ran high and the prospect of a second pool seriously loomed until eventually a compromise was found.

Today there is a new battle at the pool against a less visible but perhaps more formidable threat.

This will be a summer in which staff, crew and members try to figure out how to enjoy the place as they meet that threat.

It is yet another chapter in the history of the River Edge Swim Club.

For more on the pool, here is a feature than ran in River Dell Patch during the 50th anniversary season of the RESC.

Photo acknowledgement and credit: River Edge Swim Club