The Toronto summer of 2016 will hopefully not be as scorching as previous years, but on those hot days, one place you can head to is the massive outdoor Sunnyside-Gus Ryder Pool. Toronto’s largest outdoor pool, located at Lake Shore Blvd. W. and Parkside Dr. and right next to Sunnyside Pavilion, has a scenic view of Lake Ontario and is in the heart of Sunnyside Beach. The pool will be open for the season on Saturday, June 18, 2016 with weekend hours from 10 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and weekday hours from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. until Thursday, June 30, 2016, from which time it will be open from 10 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. and from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. every day until September 5, 2016. On Monday, September 5, 2016, the last day the pool is open for the season, the pool will be open from 10 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. only. Hours are usually extended to around 11 p.m. during heat waves, but it’s best to call first.
This outdoor pool has a large kiddie section with steps and a handrail to gradually walk in and an equally large mid-depth and deep end area so there’s usually lots of room to splash around. For those who want to get their laps in, there are two designated continuous width swim lanes that are open during all swim hours. Lockers are 25 cents (quarters only) and require a quarter each time you secure them. Pool staff will not provide quarters. There are two metered parking lots within five minutes’ walking distance of the pool that are free until 4 p.m. on weekdays; weekends require a parking fee. You can bring towels, flip flops, water wings, plastic water bottles (no food), sunglasses, sun hats, suntan lotion and books onto the sundeck. No bags are allowed on deck.
Once you’re finished swimming, you can head on over to Sunnyside Beach and watch beach volleyball or simply enjoy the view of the boats on the lake. If you’re hungry after your swim, pay a visit to the Sunnyside Pavilion Cafe (416-531-2233), which is at the south end of the pavilion, facing the lake. This casual and affordable restaurant serves gourmet pizza, burgers, sandwiches and salads and has a magnificent patio on Sunnyside Beach, just steps from the water.
Sunnyside-Gus Ryder Outdoor Pool, Lake Shore Blvd. W. at Parkside Dr., 416-392-7929