Keeping cool in Raleigh city pools

photographs by Tim Lytveninko

The history of public pools here is a rich one, spanning more than a century, and reflecting all of the social and economic changes of the times. In 1891, Richard Stanhope Pullen built Raleigh’s first public pool at Pullen Park, the land for which he’d donated to the city four years earlier, creating the state’s first public park. The pool he made of wood there was reserved exclusively for men, but in 1895, an adjacent pool was opened for women and girls. This and subsequent public pools were segregated by race until the early 1960s.

Today all of our pools offer all of us the chance to take a break not only from the heat, but from the rush of our days. WALTER asked photographer Tim Lytvinenko to capture some of that summer joy for our August pages.

Optimist Pool Raleigh, NC on July 4, 2013 with Arsenio Carter of Raleigh.

Arsenio Carter at Optimist Pool.

 on July 4, 2013 with Jason DeVries of Raleigh.

Optimist Pool Raleigh, NC


Richie Reno swims at the Ridge Road pool in Raleigh on July 5, 2013.

Richie Reno swims at Ridge Road pool.

Ridge Road pool in Raleigh on July 5, 2013.



Biltmore Pool: 701 Crown Crossing Lane; 919-831-6736

Buffaloe Road Aquatic Center : 5908 Buffaloe Road; 919-996-5600

Chavis Pool: 720 Chavis Way; 919-831-6565

Lake Johnson Pool: 1416 Athens Drive; 919-233-2111

Longview Pool: 321 Bertie Drive; 919-831-6343

Millbrook Pool: 1905 Spring Forest Road; 919-872-4130

Optimist Pool: 5902 Whittier Drive; 919-870-2882

Pullen Aquatic Center: 410 Ashe Avenue; 919-831-6197

Ridge Road Pool: 1709 Ridge Road; 919-420-2322