ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (KDVR) – Pirates Cove Family Aquatic Center in Englewood announced over Facebook on Tuesday that they will be delaying the opening of the popular water park due to staffing shortages.

“I’ve been with the city for a number of years, it was probably the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make,” Aquatics Manager Brad Anderson said.

According to the post, like many other outdoor pools across the state, Pirates Cove was expected to open over Memorial Day weekend. That is no longer happening.

The current shortage, affecting pools and water parks nationwide, will lead to a delayed opening. The park, which planned to open Saturday, May 28, will now open Saturday, June 4.

-Pirates Cove Family Aquatic Center’s Facebook Post

“With a national worker shortage, and competition from many others looking to hire lifeguards, we feel fortunate to only delay our opening by a week,” Anderson said. “We appreciate the public’s patience and look forward to another season of fun and sun at Pirates Cove.”

According to Anderson, usually, Pirates Cove needs 125 lifeguards for the summer season but they can function with a minimum of 80 lifeguards. So far, they’ve hired 50 lifeguards meaning they have 30 openings.

“We start at $15 an hour for new lifeguards and we take them through training,” Anderson said.

He said there is one online course and then three days of in-person pool training. They are hosting the pool training sessions over the weekend for the most part, but they do have some during the week.

“You don’t have to be a swimmer. You don’t have to be a swim team kid,” Anderson explained, “those days have changed.”

The city is offering recruiting bonuses of up to $260. An employee will receive $20 for every new hire they recruit and bring into the workforce.

Additionally, employees will be granted membership to the Englewood Recreation Center and if an employee stays the entire summer at Pirates Cove they could receive a bonus at the end of their employment.

“If you stay the whole summer we will throw more money and bonuses at you,” Anderson said.

Anderson doesn’t anticipate the opening day to be pushed passed June 4th. He is remaining positive when it comes to whether or not people will apply to fill the positions required to initiate the opening day.

“I’m going with blind faith, we will get everyone going,” Anderson said.

The City of Aurora is also in a lull with Lifeguards to be able to open all indoor and outdoor pools this summer. Currently, they need 130 more lifeguards to do so. The starting salary for someone with no experience is $16 an hour, which also includes training. The City of Boulder is also hiring several Lifeguards.

FOX31 and Channel 2 have learned that they’ve filled 90 of the 140 lifeguard positions. Unfortunately, a spokesperson with the city stated they don’t believe they will be able to open Spruce Pool this summer.