POOL PROJECT: September 1, Sugar Hill

by elizabeth | September 7th, 2010

Jackie Robinson Park has the best children’s wading pool area I’ve seen in the city – actually, anywhere! Among many other fun spots, there is a frog whose frame shoots streams of water from several directions, and you can run through this dreamcatcher of delight … even if you are a bit older than eight or nine. Ahem.

Shelley Valfer (tour accountant for the Allman Brothers, Jay-Z, and more…. as well as a great performer in his own right!) and I headed up on the A train to 145th Street, and found the pool immediately – it’s only a block away from the station. How had I missed this before?!

It was just 4pm, so the second shift of swimmers for the day were lined up outside the castle-like entrance to the pool.

Inside, buttresses flew above us, and there was an old-style ticket booth just inside the door. It wasn’t in use, but it sent me back to another era of glamorous movie theaters as I ascended the stairs to the women’s locker room. The hallways were decorated with hand-painted depictions of Jackie Robinson, and a gym and dance studio lay just beyond the walls. It seems that this stately building has gracefully transitioned to modern life.

The pool itself was chaotic, but since it is pretty large, we managed to get some laps in… albeit curving around a moving human obstacle course! The sun disappeared to the west as we swam, so I’d recommend this pool in the morning if you want a sparkling, bright experience. But it was a really nice one even in the shade.

STATUS: 32 down, 3 to go

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elizabeth! is a vocalist, trombonist, and songwriter working in NYC and Los Angeles. Originally from Vermont, she studied neuroscience at Harvard before moving to NYC to play, tour, and record with jazz musicians, indie rockers, pop stars and more. Her new album of original jazzy pop tunes was just released on Canopy Jazz!

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