Where to Swim in New Ulm

Hi Readers,

Last time you learned of my life-changing fear of water after I almost drown. I will elaborate on my change-of-heart today.

After a child- and adult-hood avoiding water activities, about 1993 I was on a travel agent’s familiarization trip to New Zealand and Australia for three weeks with my pretty wife (yeah, us travel agents had it tough!) We had done and seen everything we wanted to and the last day in Cairns, Australia my wife declared that she was just going to relax by the pool and read.

As if receiving a revelation from Heaven, I said, “My fear of water has affected my entire life. I’m going to try and learn how to swim.” I spent the next two hours getting used to the hotel’s pool and by the end of that time I could float face-down, dive off the side of the pool, swim underwater and was pretty confident I could swim back home to America (well, O.K., the Pacific is pretty big, but you get the idea!)

While I am no “water bug”, I am much more comfortable and occasionally go swimming with friends in certain situations. It was a dramatic and positive change of life for me!

New Ulm offers several opportunities for people to go swimming. Those with little ones can use the two “kiddie pools” at Lincoln Park (700 South State) and Washington Park (700 North State).

We have an indoor pool at the Recreation Center at 121 South Garden (at the base of the hill to go see “Hermann the German”) with a climbing wall built over the water that is great fun.

Flandrau State Park has a large, sand-bottomed, filtered pool that is very popular and worth checking-out whether you are staying there or not. Nearby hiking trails and open areas for playing catch let you dry-off your swimming suits before leaving.

The Cottonwood River, which runs through Flandrau Park, is great for swimming, canoeing, kayaking and inner-tubing. You can access it at various points, but putting in at Flandrau is the  most common place to begin, but some people go up river five miles and float downriver into New Ulm. If doing that is of interest, come to the Visitor Center so we can show you on a county map where it’s best to begin. (If I’m not in, tell my colleagues that you want to put in near the County Landfill boat landing.)

The Minnesota River, which we used to play in as kids, is still not so clean for swimming, but floating on it in various ways is great fun.

Finally, two of our hotels have pools: the Holiday Inn and the Microtel Inn.

Swimming is fun and opportunities for it abound in New Ulm!

“T” Sveine

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