Free-for-all at the Aspen Recreation Center today | AspenTimes.com

Free-for-all at the Aspen Recreation Center today

John Colson
Aspen Times Staff Writer

ASPEN ” Those interested in scampering up a climbing wall or pumping a little iron ” for free ” might want to head over to the Aspen Recreation Center today.

The ARC, located on Maroon Creek Road across from the Aspen public schools campus, recently was closed for maintenance. It has reopened, except for the swimming pools. As a result, the entire facility is free to all users today.

Because of “unforeseen circumstances,” the James E. Moore Pool will not reopen until Wednesday, said city spokeswoman Andrea Streff.

“In the meantime,” Streff wrote in a prepared statement, “the Aspen Recreation Center would like to invite Aspen residents and guests to use the Lewis Ice Arena, cardio room, weight room, and climbing tower for free!”

The ARC also offered free admission on Monday.

City recreation director Tim Andersen explained that the closure was for cleaning and maintenance of “all the little things that people may not notice, but that we have to keep on top of.”

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Plus, the closure enabled city workers to go ahead with a $1.1 million “mechanical retrofit” that includes the installation of new boilers and heat exchangers for the swimming pools and domestic water; new lighting, which is more energy-efficient than the old equipment; a new air handling system; and a variety of smaller projects.

“We thought we could get it all done in one week, and it just didn’t quite come together,” Andersen said, in spite of “guys putting in 80 hours that week just so we could get it done.”

Andersen said he expects the pools to be heated to their normal temperature ” 82 degrees Fahrenheit for the lap pool, 92 degrees for the leisure pool ” by late today at the earliest. The pool is expected to be open to the public again on Wednesday, and the normal fee structure will be in effect.

For more information, call the Aspen Recreation Center at 544-4100.