It seems like the groundhog was right; winter is lasting forever and cold temperatures aren't staying north where they belong! Families can relive memories of summer by visiting a variety of indoor pool facilities in the region. Most pools offer a combination of swim lessons and free swim opportunities. Check the web sites for times and prices.
Indoor swimming pools in Charlotte:
YMCA of Greater Charlotte: The YMCA of Greater Charlotte offers aquatics programs at 13 different locations across the area from Lake Norman to the Morrison Y in Ballantyne. (Many of these facilities also have outdoor pools and water attractions in the summer.)
Levine Jewish Community Center: The LJCC, located in the Southpark area, has an indoor lap pool, but it also just opened a new bubble over one of it's two outdoor pools. The bubble is open at different times than the indoor pool, so check the website for specific information. Guest passes are available for the indoor and bubble pools.
Ray's Splash Planet: Ray's Splash Planet is an indoor water park run by the Mecklenberg County Parks and Recreation Department. The facility has a few swimming lanes, but mostly it is designed for wading and splashing. There is one giant climbing gym, a large water slide and a lazy river. Ray's Splash Planet is open all year and is a good spot for birthday parties, too. (Suggestions: bring your own pad lock for the locker room or leave you stuff on benches inside the swimming area.)
Parks and Rec: Mecklenberg County also offers two additional indoor pools for lessons and free swim. The Mecklenberg County Aquatic Club (MCAC) is in uptown on East Martin Luther King Blvd and the Marion Diehl Pool is west of Southpark. Both pools offer lessons, lap swim, parties and fitness centers.
Mecklenberg Aquatic Club (MAC): MAC has several locations in Charlotte: one facility is at Charlotte Latin in South Charlotte and there is a Huntersville location and a Concord location. MAC trains elite, Olympic-level swimmers, but also runs numerous swim teams and swim schools for novice swimmers.
Finally, don't forget about Great Wolf Lodge. The new resort in Concord offers a giant sized indoor water park for guests.
Did I miss any indoor pools? Let me know at Jessica_Daitch@yahoo.com