(WJET/WFXP/YourErie.com) — As Memorial Day weekend approaches, Presque Isle State Park has announced plans to open swimming for the season.

Swimming at Presque Isle beaches is only allowed when lifeguards are on duty. The following beaches will be open for swimming Memorial Day weekend (Saturday, May 28 to Monday, May 30):

  • Beach 3 (Barracks Beach)
  • Beach 6 (Lyons Beach)
  • Beach 8 (Pettinato Beach)
  • Beach 11 (Kohler Beach)

Presque Isle is open daily from 5 a.m. to sunset all year round. Swimming at guarded beaches will be open from noon to 7:30 p.m. Memorial Day weekend.

ADA access will be available at Beach 8 and Beach 11. Beach concessions will not be open Memorial Day weekend.

Visitors are asked to check the signs at the park entrance for the most up to date information on what beaches are open and guarded for swimming.


According to the DCNR, surfing is permitted at the following designated locations:

  • Beach 1 – 100 feet west of the westernmost swimming area on Beach 1
  • Beach 10 – 100 feet east of the swimming area on Beach 10
  • North Pierhead Light – 100 feet north of the North Pier and extends to 100 feet south of Beach 11 swimming area
    • Wearing of a U.S. Coast Guard approved PFD is not required in these designated areas.

Scuba Diving

According to the DCNR, recreational scuba diving is permitted in designated waters of Presque Isle State Park. Divers must be certified and must register at the Public Safety Building to receive information on waters open for diving. Snorkeling is prohibited in Presque Isle State Park waters.

State Park Swimming Pools

Fifteen state parks across the state have swimming pools that will be opening to the public Memorial Day weekend:

DCNR Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn noted that the ability to hire lifeguards, construction delays, or having concession-run pools under agreement is impacting schedules for the following parks:

  • Caledonia State Park, Adams County, due to construction and staffing issues the pool opening will be delayed
  • Codorus State Park, York County, only the splash pad will be operated until additional lifeguard staffing can be hired
  • Frances Slocum State Park, Luzerne County, the pool will be open starting May 28, and operate weekends and holidays
  • French Creek State Park, Berks County, the pool is closed for the season due to not having a pool concessionaire. Parties who may be interested in partnering with the bureau as a concessionaire to operate the pool for the 2023 season and beyond should contact the French Creek State Park Office
  • Lackawanna State Park, Lackawanna County, the pool will open June 4, operating daily, closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays
  • Nockamixon State Park, Bucks County, the pool will open June 7, operating daily
  • Ryerson Station State Park, Greene County, the pool opening is still to be determined due to construction and staffing

Safety Tips

The DCNR offers the following tips to stay safe while swimming at state park beaches and pools:

  • Try to avoid swallowing water while swimming
  • If you feel ill, stay out of the water (especially children)
  • Take your children on frequent bathroom breaks and wash hands after
  • Check diapers often and change in bathroom areas — wash hands after
  • Shower before and after swimming

A number of state parks and forest recreation areas are expected to see crowding during holidays and weekends. The DCNR encourages visitors to consider options for less crowded locations, or visiting on weekdays if possible.

Overnight accommodations such as camping and cabins for Memorial Day weekend are close to capacity. Visit the state park reservation system for more information on availability.