Tri-Town Beach in Whately opens for first time since 2019

  • The Tri-Town Beach in Whately opened for the first time in two years Friday morning. STAFF PHOTO/CHRIS LARABEE

  • The Tri-Town Beach in Whately opened for the first time in two years Friday morning. STAFF PHOTO/CHRIS LARABEE

  • The Tri-Town Beach in Whately opened for the first time in two years Friday morning. STAFF PHOTO/CHRIS LARABEE

  • Kayaks and paddleboards are available for beachgoers to use, with more on the way. STAFF PHOTO/CHRIS LARABEE

  • Tri-Town Beach Commissioner Patty Pirog stands on the Whately beach on Friday as the park officially opened for the first time in two years. STAFF PHOTO/CHRIS LARABEE

Staff Writer
Published: 7/3/2022 12:21:30 AM
Modified: 7/3/2022 12:18:50 AM

WHATELY — The Tri-Town Beach picked an ideal day to open for the first time in two years as beachgoers on Friday were greeted by some of the highest temperatures of the early summer season.

“The weather is with us. It’s a beautiful day,” said Deerfield Tri-Town Beach Commissioner Patty Pirog. “We’ve been hard at work and we still have work to do.”

The Tri-Town Beach Commission started planning in January following two years of disuse. The beach was closed in 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions and remained closed last season because of the beach’s deteriorating condition. Once plans were laid out, the commission worked through a list of repairs, including resurfacing picnic tables, fixing the gazebo, getting hot water in the bathrooms and rewiring the lighting system, as well as general landscaping work.

“We did a great deal of work to get to where we are. … We’re going to continue to work on repairs,” Pirog said. “It’s great to be able to do this for the community.”

The goal this year, Pirog said, was to get the park in good enough shape to open to the public. Next year’s goal is a “total uplift” of the bathrooms.

Pirog said bringing the beach back into a usable condition was a true community effort as individuals and businesses from around the area chipped in to clean, repair and prepare the park.

“We want to thank everybody, including all the past commissioners. They started this and we’re taking the baton,” Pirog said. “This was family and community-focused. Without any of them, it wouldn’t work.”

In a post on the Tri-Town Beach’s Facebook page, the commissioners thanked several businesses and individuals, including Galenski Landscaping, Jankowski Plumbing & Heating, Greg’s Wastewater Removal, Morin Electric, B. Gorey Fabrication, Dunn Rite Handyman Services and Washburn Concrete, as well as the Deerfield Town Hall staff.

The beach is open every day from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. until Labor Day. Passes for the season are $50 for Deerfield and Whately residents; $100 for residents of Sunderland, Hatfield and Conway; and $25 for seniors. Day passes for residents of those towns are $20 per car. Passes can be purchased at the beach gate with cash or check. (Pirog noted they hope to allow digital payments next year.)

Kayaks and paddleboards are available for beachgoers to use, with more on the way. The floating dock is in need of repairs, but the commissioners hope to get it fixed. Group activities like water aquatics and swim lessons are also being considered.

“This is great,” Pirog said looking over the beach. “It’s a breath of fresh air. … We’re rejuvenated with the support of the community.”

Sunderland resident John Thayer was among the first people to arrive at the newly reopened beach on Friday. As he laid out his towel to tan, he said he was thrilled to finally use the beach because he only recently moved to the area.

“I’ve been waiting for it to open since I moved to Sunderland in 2020,” Thayer said. “I just came for a little sun. … It looks like they did a good job.”

As of now, the beach has enough workers to be staffed “about 90%” of the time, but Pirog said more lifeguards and gatekeepers are needed for full staffing. To inquire about applying to work at Tri-Town Beach, email Pirog at patty.pirog@covestro.com or visit Deerfield’s website.

Chris Larabee can be reached at clarabee@recorder.com or 413-930-4081.


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