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Perfect weekend for the summer season opening of Naperville’s Centennial Beach – Chicago Tribune

On a picture-perfect Sunday, hundreds of people came out to Centennial Beach for some fun in the sun — as well as the water and sand — to mark the unofficial start of summer.

The pool celebrated its opening weekend for 2022 with clear, blue skies and temps in the 80s and 90s.

“It’s perfect,” 20-year-old Dylan Finck, of Naperville, said of the day and the park itself. “It hasn’t changed for a while. Everything’s still basically the same. I don’t know another beach that’s like this.”

That nostalgia-inducing consistency is a big draw of the facility, aquatics manager Brett Sprague said.

“That’s one of the things people love — it stays the same year after year,” he said. “And people really love the historical aspect of everything. So we try to keep things similar year to year and continue to maintain the features and operations. Because that’s why people come back.”

Those features include a sandy beach, pool, diving boards and splash pad. The park also has activities like swim lessons, beach yoga, water aerobics and paddleboard yoga.

Dylan’s 10-year-old cousin, Marlowe, said the slide is her favorite part. “It’s fun,” she said.

“The food is really good (here) too,” Dylan added.

Quinn DeMale and Avery Brooks, both of Naperville, would agree. The 10-year-olds were enjoying some tropical snow cones nearby as the hot sun shone down upon them.

“I like the sand here,” Quinn said.

“I like that it reminds me of the beach,” said Avery. “I like the pool.”

Her dad, Mike Brooks, said they annually attend opening weekend. The place is great for children of all ages, he said — from little ones to teens. Grownups quite enjoy it too.

“We’ll be back almost every weekend,” he said. “It keeps the kids busy all day long. It’s clean. It’s safe. It’s part of the community.”

Giles Bruce is a freelance reporter for the Naperville Sun.

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