John F. Kennedy Aquatic Center to be re-opened Feb. 6

NEWARK, NJ — The city of Newark will re-open the John F. Kennedy Aquatic Center, starting Monday, Feb. 6, at 7:30 a.m., having completed necessary repairs and renovations to the facility. The Aquatic Center is located at 211 West Kinney St. in the city’s Central Ward.

The renovations included new dressing booths, diving boards, the installation of energy-efficient LED lights, new counter tops in the entryway, new tiled floors in the dressing rooms, entryway and new paint jobs throughout. The renovation did not affect the center’s gymnasium, weight rooms and other facilities.

“The John F. Kennedy Aquatic Center is one of our most important recreational facilities. It is the state’s largest indoor-outdoor swimming and diving center and it was imperative that we keep it maintained to the highest levels, so that it can provide all of our residents with quality recreation and water education programs. I commend our recreation team on the efficiency with which they addressed these issues and am delighted to welcome all of our residents of all ages as they splash into the pool,” Mayor Ras J. Baraka said.

The Aquatic Center’s hours will be Mondays to Fridays from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., and Saturdays, from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. It is closed on Sundays. The center offers aquatic programs for residents of all ages.

Additional work included resurfacing the entire pool deck with non-slip epoxy, to improve safety, installation of 56 underwater pool LED lights, 36 new privacy dressing rooms in the female and male locker rooms, upgraded shower areas, new drain systems and upgrading all lights to energy-efficient LED. The painting was done by five Newark residents hired through the city’s Office of Affirmative Action.

The John F. Kennedy Recreation and Aquatic Center is the city’s largest such facility, offering Newark residents of all ages a wide variety of daily recreation, exercise and swimming programs. The 2008 Olympic U.S. swimming gold medalist, Cullen Jones, was trained there as a youth. The complex features a multi-purpose exercise room, a regulation-size basketball court, a state-of-the-art weight rooms and an indoor/outdoor Olympic-size swimming pool equipped with a retractable roof. The John F. Kennedy Recreation and Aquatic Center has hosted numerous events, including the 2002 U.S. Youth Games Swimming competition, professional wrestling matches, a variety of exercise classes, amateur boxing bouts, basketball tournaments and numerous community functions.