By RHEA-FRANCES TETLEY
Both the north and south sides of the swimming beach at Lake Gregory are now open to enjoy with lifeguards. They were opened just in time for the Fourth of July weekend.
Up until now, only the north beach near the North Beach Grill had been opened, leading to some crowding on the beach when more people began visiting from the valley below as the temperatures soared.
Now that the Lake Gregory Company has hired more employees, there are enough lifeguards and staff to have both beach sections open. People were very excited to enter the gates and set up their easy-ups, umbrellas, lay out their beach towels and enjoy the amenities of the beach at Lake Gregory.
Jonathan, 12, from Colton, said, “At first I thought the lake water was cold but, after I got out to the splash pad, I didn’t notice because it was so much fun. My favorite part was the climbing wall. I like the water slide too.” His father, Miguel, said, “They are having so much fun today. I am glad we came up here. I think I’ll bring the whole family again this summer and, if it gets too hot, it’s so close and so much cooler than at home. I can’t believe the difference.”
Nearby on the beach, another family was sitting under an easy-up. John and Doris brought their three smaller children, 2, 3, 5, and two teens, 12 and 15, who were out on the inflatable play island. The Fontana family was loving the lake. “My younger kids are enjoying playing in the sand with their buckets and shovels and I like those sprinklers at the splash pad with the younger ones. I’ve only seen my older boys out there on the island, since we got here. They really seem to be enjoying themselves; it’s only $20 for all day for them. I find it easy to relax here, too. It is so peaceful under these trees.”
The Lopez family was also from Fontana. “We’ve come to Lake Gregory before and missed not being here last year. I am glad it’s open again this year and the boys have already ridden an aqua-cycle and the Duffy boats were already rented out, but we hope next time to rent one. It looks so cool to drive one around the lake.”
Teenagers Krystal, 17, and Ruby, 18, were lying out on the beach, working on their tans. “My parents used to bring me here as a kid,” said Krystal, “so we came up from San Bernardino today. I like all the new paddleboards and plan to rent a kayak next time we come up. It is so nice up here today.” Ruby added, “I’d never been here before but now plan to come back. Maybe we’ll come back next week when it may be less crowded, although it is less crowded than Laguna was last week. The drive was much easier than I thought it would be.”
Lake Gregory is an 84-acre lake, with its west end dedicated to water play. They have a splash pad, a zero-level water play area, with sprinklers and shooting water, plus the inflatable water park out in the lake and a two-flume waterslide. It has kayaks, standup paddleboards, boats and aqua-cycles for rent. The electric, white Duffy boats hold larger groups, up to nine persons, with a table in the middle. The beach area offers sunbathing, swimming, paddleboards, pedal boats and a lakeside grill for snacks.
The $20 all-access day pass gives one person access to the Lake Gregory swim beach and splash pad, plus all-day access to the waterslides and the inflatable water park. The lake will be open every day through Labor Day, weather permitting. Entry to the beach only is $10 and $6 for seniors, while children 3 and under are free. There are beach club membership levels for those who want to go to the lake every day this summer.
The Lake Gregory Company won first place in the Jamboree Days parade for their entry “Rock the Boat, Let the Adventures Begin” with their Duffy boat on a trailer surrounded by energetic park employees in their new park ranger outfits. The fireworks display on July 3 at 9 p.m. over the lake with open beaches for the people to enter for free and enjoy the show was well received.