General pool information
The Iowa City Parks and Recreation Department operates three pools: the Robert A. Lee Recreation Center pool, 220 S. Gilbert St., the Mercer Park Aquatic Center, 2701 Bradford Dr., and City Park pool (seasonally), 200 Park Rd.
- Aquatics facility descriptions (pools + park splash features)
- Pool admission fee
- Pool schedule
- Swim lessons
- American Red Cross Certification Courses
View the Spring 2019 Swim lesson matrix here
Registration for the 2019 winter/spring swim lesson program begins Wednesday, Dec. 12 at 6 a.m., both online and in-person. To read full descriptions of each level, check our activity guide: www.icgov.org/activityregistration.
The Iowa City Parks and Recreation Department believes that every kid deserves to learn to swim. Learn more about the Swim Lesson Scholarship program.
Water Exercise classes are available at Mercer Park Aquatic Center and Robert A. Lee Recreation Center pools.
Click here for Water Exercise schedule and class information.
Indoor pool facility schedules:
Outdoor pool facility schedule:
City Park pool
*Please refer to the Parks and Recreation main page for up-to-date notifications regarding pool closures or special hours. The notices can be found at the very top of the page.
Blended Lifeguard Training
Learn to be a professional lifeguard through the American Red Cross Blended Learning and Classroom Lifeguarding Courses. This training provides entry-level participants the knowledge and skills to prevent, recognize and respond to aquatic emergencies and to provide care for breathing and cardiac emergencies, injuries and sudden illness until EMS personnel take over.
Class is offered Jan. 19-20, April 27-28, and May 11-12, 2019.
Adult CPR/AED + First Aid
The Adult CPR/AED course incorporates the latest science and teaches students how to respond to breathing and cardiac emergencies for victims about 12 years and older. Students who successfully complete this course will receive a certificate for Adult CPR/AED valid for two years.
Class is offered Feb. 9 and March 16, 2019.
Shallow Water Lifeguarding
The purpose of the Shallow Water Lifeguarding course is to provide entry-level shallow water lifeguard participants with the knowledge and skills needed to prevent, recognize and respond to aquatic emergencies in shallow water up to 5-feet deep and to provide care for breathing and cardiac emergencies, injuries and sudden illnesses until emergency medical services personnel take over. This program offers a choice of Shallow Water Lifeguarding/First Aid/CPR/AED courses to meet the various training needs of a diverse audience.
Class is offered March 9-10, 2019
Water Safety Instructor
Earn your certification to teach American Red Cross swimming and water safety, and gain the skills needed to teach courses and make presentations to swimmers of every age and ability. The Water Safety Instructor Certification Course trains WSI candidates to teach courses and presentations in the American Red Cross Swimming and Water Safety program by developing their understanding of how to use the course materials, how to conduct training sessions and how to evaluate participant's progress.
Class is offered March 29-31 and May 3-5, 2019
The Lifeguarding Instructor (LGI) course trains instructor candidates to teach American Red Cross student-level courses including Lifeguarding, Waterpark Skills, and CPR/AED for Professional Rescuers and Health Care Providers. Instructor candidates who hold a current student-level Waterfront Skills certificate will also be able to teach the Waterfront Skills course. This instructor course does not teach student-level lifeguarding skills and knowledge.
Class is offered April 5-7, 2019
Robert A. Lee Community Recreation Center Pool
Located in the Robert A. Lee Community Recreation Center
220 S. Gilbert Street
Iowa City, IA 52240
The Robert A. Lee Community Recreation Center pool is located at 220 S. Gilbert Street in downtown Iowa City. This is an L-shaped pool featuring a 25-yard main body, with the water ranging from 3 to 5 feet in this area. The bottom of the ‘L’ is a 10-foot deep diving well which does not have a diving board. There is a wading pool area which requires children to have adult supervision. This pool is in operation on a year-round basis.
Mercer Park Aquatic Center
Located in Mercer Park Aquatic Center/Scanlon Gym
2701 Bradford Drive
Iowa City, IA 52240
The Mercer Park Aquatic Center is divided into three separate sections. The deep section is on the east end of the pool. This section is 25 yards long; depth ranges from 4'6" to 12' and contains two (2) one-meter diving boards. The middle section is 25 yards long; depth ranges from 4'2" to 4'6". The shallow section is on the west end of the pool. It is approximately 2'6" to 4'. There is an outside wading pool area which requires children to have adult supervision.
The Mercer Park Aquatic Center is equipped with a 12-person spa. Use of the spa is restricted to adults (16 years or older) and children who are directly supervised by a responsible adult (someone 16 years or older). Those with heart conditions, high blood pressure, pregnant women, young children and others with health concerns should consult a physician before using the spa. To ensure proper function of the spa, the pool manager reserves the right to restrict use by children (15 years and younger) during times of peak use. The spa is not open for use during times reserved for swimming lessons.
City Park Pool
Located in City Park
200 E. Park Road
Iowa City, IA 52245
The City Park pool is located outdoors on Park Road in Upper City Park on the northwest side of Iowa City. This is a T-shaped pool featuring a super shallow area on both sides of the ‘T,’ a 50-meter and 25-yard lap swim area, and two (2) one-meter and two (2) three-meter diving boards. The pool depth ranges from 1 to 14 feet. The facility also features a small wading pool for use by young children being directly supervised by a responsible adult (16 years or older).
City Park pool is open seasonally.
Iowa City Parks and Recreation manages three splash features: the Wetherby Park Splash Pad, 2400 Taylor Drive, the Fairmeadows Park Splash Pad, 2500 Miami Drive, and the Tower Court Park Spray Pad, 1124 Tower Ct. The features are touch-activated, and the water turns off after a designated period of time.
The splash features operate 9 a.m.-8 p.m., daily, from Memorial Day to Labor Day (weather dependent). There is no fee to use these splash features.