Summer days in Sanford/Lee County NC are long and hot. Cool off with these local options for water play:
Where: 106 Charlotte Ave, Sanford NC
What: The fountain runs from May 1 to October 31. During that period, it will operate for an hour at a time at 10a, 12p, 2p, and 4p each day.
O.T. Sloan Pulic Pool
Where: 1420 Bragg Street, Sanford NC
What: This is Lee County’s only public pool and is operated by Lee County Parks & Recreation. OT Sloan pool is open Tuesdays-Sundays (1-5pm) and costs $3 per person. Children under age 4 are free.
More info: 919-776-9831
Broadway Swim Club
Where: 316 Gilbert Lett Dr, Broadway NC
What: You must be a member to swim at this pool. There is a $300 fee the first year and $275 for each year thereafter.
More info: 919-258-9685
Deep River Pool
Where: 617 Womble Road, Sanford NC
What: Membership information unknown
More info: 919-776-3331
Elks Lodge Pool
Where: 910 Carthage Street, Sanford NC
What: Paid members can swim at the Lodge’s pool Monday-Saturday (10am-8pm) and Sunday (1-8pm). Only paid members and their families are allowed to use the pool. The cost is $185.
More info: 919-774-4835
Moose Lodge Pool
Where: 821 Woodland Avenue, Sanford NC
What: Paid members ($75 yearly dues) can swim at the Lodge’s pool for a yearly fee of $150. That price usually drops after July 4th. Note that children aren’t allowed to swim at night.
More info: 919-776-2125 (to join) or 919-776-3331 (for the pool)
Southern Pines Pool
Where: 730 S. Henley Street, Southern Pines NC
What: A general recreational option that includes a public pool, basketball court, and playground.
More info: 910-692-7213
Jordan Lake State Recreation Area
Where: Click here for maps of the lake’s individual sections.
What: The lake offers many camping, swimming, fishing, boating, playing, and picnic options. Ebenezer Church Recreation area is the most popular for day trips. Crosswinds and Poplar Point are the most popular for camping. The cost is $6 per car for the recreation area ($4 for seniors, $15 for buses or vans) or $50 for a season pass, which lasts Memorial Day through Labor Day. Camping costs $20-40 per night. Visitors to the campground must pay $3 per car unless they are spending the night.
More info: Visit the lake’s website.
Heritage Lake Campground
Where: 526 Sadler Road, Carthage NC
What: The campground offers a recreational, spring-fed lake that’s open to day-trippers and overnight guests. You can swim, play watersports, paddle boat, and fish.
More info: 910-783-8810
Smith Lake Army Recreation Area
Where: 6200 Murchison Road, Fort Bragg NC
What: Fort Bragg’s public recreation area suffered significant damage during the tornado and is slated to open in early July. The cost is $4 for government ID cardholders, $5 for the public, and $2 for children ages 6-16.
More info: 910-396-5979
Where: Access points in Lillington, Broadway, and Corinth NC
What: This large river runs right through Lee County on its way to the Atlantic Ocean. The river is perfect for swimming, fishing, canoeing, or kayaking.
Where: There are multiple access points. The closest ones for Lee County residents are down 42W past Gilliam Mill (Carbonton Dam Park), off Hwy 421S in gulf (McIver Landing), and at Deep River Park in Cumnock. (see map)
What: There are picnic tables and swings at most access points. The river is perfect for swimming, fishing, canoeing, or kayaking.
Where: Access points for the Haw River include Chicken Bridge (north of Pittsboro), from either bridge in Bynum, or along Hwy 64.
What: This area is best for canoeing and kayaking, though there are nice areas for swimming. Be on the look out for poison ivy at all access points.
Note: Always check current river levels before heading out for a swim or paddle. Here’s a great resource. Use Ctrl+F to search for the specific river that interests you.
Wet ‘n Wild Emerald Pointe
Where: 3910 South Holden Road, Greensboro NC
What: The park boasts more than 36 water rides and attractions, adding up to more than 3 million gallons of water. Click here for ticketing information.
More info: Find out more about the park here.
Where: 5869 Permastone Lake Road, Hope Mills NC
What: This manmade lake offers white-sand beaches and clear water as well as many family-friendly activities in and out of the water. The park is open from Memorial Day through Labor Day (10am-6pm) and costs $14 per adult and $10 per child. Children under 2 are free with a paying parent.
More info: Learn more about the park here.
Lake Waldo’s Beach
Where: 6742 Waldos Beach Road, Fayetteville NC
What: This seasonal water park is open June 11-Labor Day (10am-6pm) and costs $10 for children under age 10 or $12 for everyone else.
More info: 910-423-8701
Splash Pad at Christina Smith Park
Where: 500 Fisher Street, Fayetteville NC
What: A water-play area complete with a playground, sprinklers, and picnic area. The park is free, but often crowded.
More info: 910-433-1572
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