Brookline residents endure heat wave without their pool


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As temperatures reached toward the 90s, Justin Phillips left his Brookline home in search of water, in any form.

"On days like this, I'd open a fire hydrant for the kids if I could," he said.

It didn't come to that. He found cool relief for his 4-year-old son, Justin Phillips, Jr., in the two 8-foot-tall sprinklers at Moore Park in Brookline.

The screams of summer -- the sound that comes when you combine kids and water -- reverberated through Moore Park today, but not from the city's pool. City pools opened last week, but today the Moore Park pool in Brookline still stood empty of both kids and water.

According to Citiparks Director Michael Radley, the pool's concrete must be repaired and the pool will likely open in mid to late July. The city was installing a new liner at the pool when its 73-year-old concrete began disintegrating.

Signs at Moore Pool today directed people to other swimming holes including pools in Banksville, and Sheraden and the spray park in Beechview. Most summers, the pool is filled each day with kids, said Sara Szymanski, who has worked for the Citiparks lunch program at the park the past four years.

In the early days of summer, many of those regular pool visitors have told her they are upset the pool is closed temporarily.

"A lot of people in this community come down here every day," she said. "We've had people come up and complain about the pool not being open."

Under the sprinklers, however, there was little complaining and a lot of running around.

Sarah Castiglione of Brookline, along with her sister, Kadie, her 2-year-old son Jayden and her eight-year-old cousin, D.J. Matthew, sat beside the sprinklers taking a break this morning.

Her home has air conditioning, but "still, it's nice to get out," she said, and she had the day off work.

It didn't seem to bother D.J. that there was no water to go under in the pool. Just running through the water was enough to cool him down, he said.

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This story originally appeared in The Pittsburgh Press. To subscribe: http://old.post-gazette.com/trypress/ Kaitlynn Riely: kriely@post-gazette.com.


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