About April Pools Day

Every year, many pools around Washington state host April Pools Day events for families and community members. Each two-hour event is designed by the pool and includes a combination of water safety activities and free swim time. Many pools offer:

  • One hour of water safety instruction, elementary rescue and life jacket use
  • One hour free swim
  • A raffle for free life jackets, free swim lessons and door prizes

Some pools offer water safety activities and free swim at the same time. Learn more about April Pools Day and how your pool can get involved.    

Host an Event


April Pools Day will be Saturday, April 16, 2016. Some pools hold their events on other days in April. See a list of events (PDF).


RSVP by March 7, 2016, to receive a free life jacket to give away at your event. Pools that RSVP will also be included in media press releases and in the online event listing.

Contact us

Email us for more information.

Tips and Suggestions


  • Distribute flyers through local schools and daycares.
  • Give a free one-hour swim to classroom with most participants.
  • Distribute flyers on the last day of your current lesson session.
  • Distribute flyers on your registration day for spring lessons.
  • Promote during your family and public swims.
  • Ask the community centers in your neighborhood and division to promote and distribute flyers.
  • Have local sponsors contribute door prizes or refreshments.
  • Write an article for your local newspaper.

Format and organization

  • Have participants do as much "hands-on" as possible.
  • Use skits and videos as well as demonstrations.
  • For the first hour, set up three to four stations where you are teaching water safety skills, demonstrating elementary forms of rescue, checking life jackets, testing participants' flotation gear, etc. Create a form to stamp showing participation at each station. Give a prize or free swim to those who visit all the stations.
  • Have a water safety "carnival."
  • Use canoes and boats.
  • Set up a table for flyers, safety information, brochures - have someone staff this table.
  • Prepare a box in which people can enter their names for the drawing for a free set of swimming lessons.
  • Promote your swim lesson program, along with all of your other programs!


Popular Stations

  • Share your most popular water safety activities with other April Pools Day partners. Submit activities by email.