Only 3 Minneapolis beaches will have lifeguard services now due to staffing shortage

Lake Nokomis Main Beach in Minneapolis. (FOX 9)

Lifeguards will be on duty at only three Minneapolis beaches, due to a staffing shortage.

The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board announced that it is reducing lifeguard services from five beaches to the three most popular beaches starting today.

Lifeguards will continue to be on duty from noon to 7 p.m. daily through Labor Day at Bde Maka Ska Thomas Beach, Nokomis Main Beach and Wirth Lake Beach. If the temperature is 85 degrees or higher at 6 p.m., lifeguards will stay on duty until 8 p.m.

“While we are disappointed that we cannot continue lifeguard services at all five beaches through mid-August as we would in a typical year, we are grateful to have enough staff to guard these three beaches,” said Assistant Superintendent of Recreation Tyrize Cox in a statement. 

According to Cox, the aquatics department was trying to hire more lifeguards, but it is no longer feasible this late in the season.

The park board had staffed lifeguards at the five of the 12 beaches in Minneapolis since July 2

The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board is encouraging beach visitors to social distance, bring a water bottle and hand sanitizer, and follow Minnesota Department of Health guidelines to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Minneapolis beaches are open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.