Spring has finally arrived and the newly refurbished Baer Memorial Swimming Pool in Lehighton is ready for the start of another busy swimming season to begin. The official opening day this year will be Saturday, May 28 from noon to 7 p.m.

This year, like every other year since the pool re-opened, admission will be free on opening day. Opening day festivities will include the dedication of a new life guard chair and stereo system at 2 p.m. Free hot dogs being served from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. Both the lifeguard chair and stereo system are being dedicated in memory of Joel Bauchspies from the Joel Bauchspies memorial fund.

Last year over 1,000 season tickets were sold and Tom Evans, Lehighton recreation director, is predicting even more will be sold this year.

The newly erected pool pavilion, built with money donated by the Lehighton Pool Pals, is already being booked for summer parties. The pool employed a total of 30 lifeguards and other staff members last year. Admission is going to be free for children under the age of one year old.

Daily rates for admission are going to be the same as last year. There are discount season passes being sold now through May 31, 2011 by going to Lehighton Borough.com website and click on Facilities/Parks and Recreation entry and click to download the 2011 Beat the Heat flyer for more details on season ticket passes.

The Lehighton Area Pool Pals have also been busy over the winter holding fundraising events such as the annual Halloween dance, bingo, and yard sales with the money raised being used to provide free swimming lessons for anyone in the Lehighton Area school district.

Swimming lessons are also free for all season ticket holders. Swimming lessons will be held in morning and evening sessions this summer. Season tickets will also be sold at the pool.

"Lehighton Area Pool Pals thanks our supporters and contributors throughout the year," said Mark Hoffman, chairman. "Your generosity is greatly appreciated. The life of a child saved by learning to swim with swimming lessons is priceless." Besides raising money for swimming lessons, to protect the pool from break-ins and vandalism, the Pool Pals have also purchased an elaborate security system that includes cameras, motion detectors and alarms.

New this year to the pool will be a sand volleyball court. There is a plan to have teams with tournaments already being planned. July 16 will be another day with free admission and is being sponsored by Lehighton Hardware. Entertainment is also planned for this day.

There is going to be water aerobics classes held Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to noon. There is also going to be Zumba/aquatic exercise classes to be held Wednesday and Saturday. Many fun times are planned for exercise and keep in shape

There is a plan this summer season to have live bands perform several times this summer on a Friday or Saturday evening. There are also plans to have a DJ for listening and dancing pleasure several times this season. Contact the Lehighton Swimming Pool during the summer season for more information about these events.

There is going to be a free safety and informational event sponsored by the Lehighton School District to be held Thursday June 16 at the Lehighton Swimming Pool. Many agencies attend and give handouts and information on a very wide range of topics for the betterment and safety of children. It was very well attended last year.

Continue to follow Lehighton Area Pool Pal events at www.facebook.com/Lehighton Area Pool Pals.