Nishuane Park pool on a 90-degree day.

Free Montclair pool passes are available for seniors who would struggle to pay the normal costs.

With the support of donations from community members Deb Ellis, Hal Strelnick and others, Councilman Peter Yacobellis is coordinating what he’s calling the Montclair Pools Senior Hardship Program. As of Thursday, three seniors were already set to receive passes, and Yacobellis expected he could accommodate about 15 more.

The program continues an outreach effort Yacobellis, through the donations, began this week that also provided passes to 22 families seeking passes. The initiative had already reached its capacity to serve families by Thursday and was only open to seniors at that point.

Normally, a pool pass for a senior costs $25, and a pass for a family costs $225.




The program is open to those 55 and older, and those interested will need to fill out a Google form here. An email confirmation will be sent, asking participants to bring proof of residency to the Recreation Department at Town Hall located at 205 Claremont Ave., during regular business hours, to obtain the pool passes.

Montclair’s Mountainside and Nishuane pools are open this summer, but its Essex pool remains closed because of state-recommended social distancing requirement, a lifeguard shortage and a chlorine shortage.

Yacobellis and members of Montclair Mutual Air also recently coordinated donations of air conditioners to residents. Yacobellis facilitated the donation of 9 of the AC units, and Montclair Mutual Aid another 22.

“Over the last 10 days, several donors both named and anonymous have reached out to me to help coordinate giving away 31 air conditioners, 22 family pool passes and now 20 senior pool passes to those experiencing economic hardship,” Yacobellis said in an email to Montclair Local. “All told, between $12,000 and $15,000 in cash and in-kind contributions has been raised, which is a testament to the spirit of this town. I continue to be touched by how many people want to help make sure everyone in Montclair stays cool and enjoys the summer.”