Bisti Bay water park set to open for Memorial Day weekend with two new slides

The two water slides will be open this summer

Joshua Kellogg
Farmington Daily Times
  • The Farmington water park is set to re-open on May 28 in time for the Memorial Day weekend, according to City of Farmington Aquatics Manager Sterling Schwartz.
  • One of the slides is an open-air slide and the second slide is an enclosed slide, leaving riders in the dark until the slide ends in the pool below.
  • The water park’s 400-person capacity has been reduced to 300 people, due to San Juan County’s Turquoise color tier status allowing 75 percent occupancy of an outdoor recreational facility.

FARMINGTON — The community will finally have an opportunity to get the full Bisti Bay at Brookside Park experience as two new water slides will be operational when the water park reopens.

The park is set to re-open on May 28 in time for the Memorial Day weekend, according to City of Farmington Aquatics Manager Sterling Schwartz.

A view from the top of the two water slides on May 25 at the Bisti Bay at Brookside Park water park in Farmington. The water park is set to open on May 28 after being closed last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The water park replaced Brookside Pool, which closed down in 2016 due to safety and health concerns.

The grand opening for Bisti Bay took place on July 13, 2019, but the two large water slides which empty into a lap pool were not finished.

The slide installation was completed during Spring 2020, but the water park remained closed last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

City officials are eager for the public to try out the two water slides, according to Schwartz.

“We’re very excited to open with 100 percent of the slides,” Schwartz said. “We’re so excited to get people on those.”

City of Farmington Aquatics Manager Sterling Schwartz talks about the two new water slides on May 25 at the Bisti Bay at Brookside Park. The water park is set to open on May 28 for the Memorial Day weekend.

One of the slides is an open-air slide and the second slide is an enclosed slide, leaving riders in the dark until the slide ends in the pool below.

“The closed one, you’re entirely in the dark and you go really fast,” Schwartz said. “The open slide usually runs people a little bit faster, but it is a longer ride than the completely enclosed one.”

The slides will join the lazy river, the lap pool, a challenge course and the children’s play area which were open for 2019.

Bisti Bay will be open from noon to 6 p.m., seven days a week.

There are some COVID-19 protocols the water park has implemented for 2021.

The water park’s 400-person capacity has been reduced to 300 people, due to San Juan County’s Turquoise color tier status allowing 75 percent occupancy of an outdoor recreational facility.

Schwartz believes the water park will hit capacity at times and while patrons can leave and reenter the facility, it’s possible they might have to wait outside for capacity to reduce before reentering.

Christa Chapman, a spokeswoman for the Farmington Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department, told The Daily Times the city is following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

Those who are fully vaccinated do not have to wear a face mask while those who are not vaccinated are required to wear a face mask when not in the water.

Admission cost has increased to $6 per person from $4 in 2019. Children who are two years old and younger have free admission.

The cost of admission was previously reduced due to the slides not being operational, Schwartz said.

As for The Beach at Lake Farmington, it will remain open but will not be staffed with lifeguards.

Schwartz said lifeguard staffing levels have been low, but anyone interested in a position as a lifeguard can contact the Farmington Aquatic Center for more information.

Joshua Kellogg covers breaking news for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627 or via email at jkellogg@daily-times.com.

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