With Memorial Day quickly approaching, it’s time to decide where to stay cool this summer. This week's rainy weather makes it a good time to fantasize about the warm sunny days around the corner and where to spend them.
The first decision facing local residents is pool or lake. We are so fortunate in Parsippany. There are a myriad of options in either category.
When the kids were first born, we joined a pool and I found it really stressful. They couldn’t really swim, but thought they could and were constantly scraping their feet on the concrete or having near misses with their teeth on the edge of the pool.
For several years after that, we belonged to Lake Parsippany, which was perfect. The kids enjoyed playing in the sand and then cooled off in shallow water. They were allowed to wear their “bubbles” and tired themselves out swimming for hours.
Now we’re at the age where they all swim without flotation devices and aren’t that keen on the sand anymore, so it’s back to considering pools.
I recently did my research on both options. For the purpose of comparison, I’ve documented the rates for family memberships.
Typically, there are options for singles or couples and many have special membership programs for seniors, babysitters and guests.
Lake Parsippany is located on the West Side of Parsippany and easily accessible from Route 202, Interstate 287 and Parsippany Road. It is owned and managed by the Lake Parsippany Property Owners Association.
The lake offers an amazing amount of recreational activities and a year-round calendar of events that take place outdoors and inside its clubhouse. Membership is open to anyone who wants join and early-bird prices are available now and during the Lake’s Open House event on June 4.
The early-bird rate for family membership is $345 including sales tax. Visit www.lake-parsippany.org for more information.
Cooks Pond is located just off Diamond Spring Road and is run by the Denville Recreation Department and also open to non-residents. My friends who join Cooks Pond rave about their lifeguards, snack bar and how clear the water is. The non- resident family rate is $325 for the season or you can purchase a weekend-only membership for $255. Click here for more information and an application.
The Morris County Parks Department oversees Sunrise Lake at Lewis Morris Park on Route 124 in Morris Township. Click here for a map. You don’t have to join to swim there, although a family membership is extremely reasonable (around $125 for the whole summer!) Daily rates, which are just $5 for adults, $4 for kids and free for children ages 4 and under.
Sunrise Lake has a really big beach, indoor snack bar and rustic locker rooms, paddle boats and a fun floating obstacle course called the “Wibit” for older kids.
Most of the other local lakes in Parsippany, Denville and Mountain Lakes restrict membership to those who live within their neighborhood.
The Lake Hiawatha Swim Club located on Lake Shore Drive, just off North Beverwyck (see map) offers a family membership for $575. However, right now it's offering a special: If an existing family gets a new family to join the pool, both families will pay just $400.
The swim club offers swimming lessons and has both swimming and diving teams. The divers take advantage of their 1-meter and 3-meter springboards.
Atlantis Sports Club & Spa manages the facilities inside the located at 199 Smith Road. They have a full fitness facility and indoor and outdoor pools. Yearlong or summer-only memberships are available.
During the summer, a couple is $425 and each child is $100 and those rates include access to the health club. The amenities include steam rooms, dry sauna, locker rooms, pool-side dining and more. To get more details click here .
Glacier Hills Association operates a wonderful neighborhood pool tucked in a wooded area just off Forum Court. The association welcomes swimmers from its own neighborhood and families who live in neighborhoods districted to attend Mount Tabor and Littleton elementary schools. Family membership is $470 and you can call Denise at 862-812-8707 for more information
The Lakeland Hills YMCA on Fanny Road in Mountain Lakes serves Parsippany residents and has a summer-only membership option that allows you access to its indoor, Olympic-size swimming pool as well as all the other fitness classes and facilities. The cost is $465 for a family and you can find more information here. They also offer lots of swimming lessons and will even come to you to provide lessons in your backyard!
Many Parsippany residents opt to join Bee Meadow Pool. It’s owned by the Township of Hanover and run by it’s Board of Recreation, but open to non-residents. The pool has two slides and a shallow area popular with families that have small children. It also offers a full calendar of events, swim team and swimming lessons. Non-resident family is $550. Rates and types of membership vary, click here to learn more.
Morris Plains' Community Pool is located off of Malapardis Drive in Morris Plains (click here for a map). It is also open to residents and non-residents and many families from the Sedgefield, Powdermill and Tabor neighborhoods choose to join this facility. A family membership is $430. You can find additional information and rates on its 2011 application.
Those who live in Glenmont Commons or the Puddingstone area or families who want a quiet neighborhood pool may want to consider Stardust Pool. It’s just off of Hanover Avenue on Raynor Road in Morris Township. It's a small neighborhood pool with lots of activities and amenities. Membership rates aren’t posted on their website, but it does say they have some openings for this season.