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Activities / Children / Colorado Livin' / Denver Fun / Health

Want to Swim in Winter? Here’s Where!

When the pools around town close for the summer, and the lifeguard whistles stop tweeting across the warm air, most of us in Colorado put thoughts of swimming to rest. Our eyes and hearts shift quickly from the pool to the slow build-up of snow on the mountains to our west. We hit the ski sales and re-outfit our growing kids in new gear, while bathing suits sink forgotten to the bottom of dresser drawers.

I am a summer girl, however, who counts the days until Memorial Day as soon as the sun sets on Labor Day. And I have a child who loves being in the water. It’s not necessarily about swimming for him. It’s just the calm, the ease of movement. So this winter, for the first time, I looked to our local indoor pools and was more than pleasantly surprised about the options.

An entire family can spend the day swimming while watching the snow fall outside from steamy floor-to-ceiling windows. And it costs as little as $20 for a family of four. Here are a few we have enjoyed from north of the city to south of it:

The Apex Center Indoor Water Park ( includes a 25-yard lap pool as well as amusements like a tube slide and vortex area with a moving current. It also has a separate zero-depth “beach” play area with slides, fountains, waterfalls and geysers for younger kids. There is also an indoor playground, childcare, a rock climbing wall, gym and snack bar. The fee is only $5.25 per adult, less for kids, and those under two years of age can swim for free. It is an amazing place to engage (and tire out) your children and their friends on a cold, wintry day. A bit of a drive, but worth it at 13150 W. 72nd Ave., Arvada, 303-424-2739.

The Goodson Recreation Center ( is more a traditional pool than a water park compared to its colleagues to the north and south, but it provides the same escape from feeling stuck indoors. Open swim in Goodson’s 25-meter pool is available every day, including late into the weekend afternoons. There is a small swim area for younger children. Entrance fees are less than $20 for a family of five. 6315 S University Blvd., Centennial, 303-798-2476.

To the south of the city, the Lone Tree Recreation Center ( has that clean, brand new feel that every family loves. Even the family locker area is spotless. And the pool is fantastic for all ages. A lap-swimming area allows serious swimmers to get their exercise while kids slide down the huge tube slide, coast quickly around the lazy river, jump in and out of the geysers and join their parents in the large hot tub. A zero entry section with a toddler size slide is perfect for families with young ones. Also included in your $19 per family fee are its workout facility, running track, basketball courts and more. 10249 Ridgegate Circle, Lone Tree, 303-708-3500.

Swimming lessons and childcare are available at all three facilities.

There are other indoor pools around town that can be found on your local Parks and Recreation websites, and they too offer indoor family fun for a small entrance fee all winter long. These are just the ones our family discovered this winter when we’ve ventured out in the cold, longing for summer and wearing our bathing suits.

Jennifer Kelly
Author: Jennifer Kelly

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  1. Great list! The Apex is our local favorite and feels like our very own water park all winter long. We bring our lunches (they allow food), snag one of the table and make an afternoon of it.

  2. The JCC in Denver has a heated outdoor salt-water pool. They swim in the C.A.R.A. league and practice outdoors from 4:30-5:30pm. They start their next season for swimmers 5-15 years old on February 4.

    On Jan 28, 2013 – they are holding an information meeting from 5:30-6pm in the JCC MACC boardroom. Email [email protected] for more information.

  3. We like the apex in Arvada. Westminster city park Rec center has a good one, I have never been but my friends like it.

  4. Westminster Rec Center and Paul Derda Rec Center in Broomfield have great indoor pools with slides.

  5. I live in Broomfield and it is phenomenal…I highly recommend it.

  6. Montclair rec center. My kids love the fountains and the ginormous water slide.

  7. The APEX is by far, the cleanest, most modern, most variety of any indoor pool I have ever been to. WONDERFUL for little ones, and bigger kids love the super-tall slides and challenging logs. Mom can swim laps or relax in the oversized hottubs. If the budget is tight, it is FREE to go to the indoor playground on the left as you walk in the front door. You have to stay and watch the kids, but it is great for keeping them active on frigid days:-) LOVE the APEX!

  8. Are there any outside pools in Denver? I know it’s winter, but Boulder has one or two. 🙂

  9. We really like the Wheat Ridge Rec Center – the slide, lazy river, zero-entry area and lap pool are great. The lobby is very nice with a fireplace, comfy couches and TVs. I’ve had my daughter’s birthday party here fore 3 years running.

  10. The Southridge Rec. Ctr. in Highlands Ranch has a nice lazy river, log/gator walk w/rope, climbing tower w/sprayers and tube slide, not-too-hot tub for young and old alike, and some shallow and slightly deeper areas for swimming. Life vests are available for the younger kiddos, or those not too sure of their aquatic abilities. It was $5/child over 3 (or 2?), though I’m not sure if the adult fee differed.

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