Columbia Parks & Recreation says they hired 20 lifeguards after pools were at risk of not opening.

COLUMBIA - The Albert-Oakland Family Aquatic Center opened for the summer for the first time Wednesday. 

With heat indexes projected to soar near the triple digits this week, many people were excited for the pool to open.

Columbia Parks and Recreation aquatic supervisor Janel Twehous is excited to see people back in the water. 

"The first day has been awesome," Twehous said. "It has been ridiculously hot. We had a great crowd for both sessions today."

The pool is open Wednesday-Sunday from 12 to 2 p.m. and 2:30 to 4:30 p.m., and some people have mixed feelings about the limited hours.

Trinity Nichole thinks the limited hours are the right move.

"I enjoy it because not a lot of people are here, so it keeps the COVID down and keeps us away from each other as much as possible," Nichole said.

Jamaal Jordan thinks it should be open longer.

"I feel like they could open up a little more," Jordan said. "I'd like if they could open up a little earlier, or stay open a little later because four hours isn't going to cut it."

The Parks and Recreation department is now expecting to have enough lifeguards to get through the summer, after pools were at risk of not opening.

"We had a class June 4, 5, and 6," Twehous said. "We were able to get about 20 guards from that class."

Columbia Parks and Recreation is also planning on opening the Douglass Park pool on July 1. More information can be found on their website.