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“Wheelchair accessible and friendly to all people with disabilites”
Review of Centennial Beach

Centennial Beach
Ranked #4 of 48 things to do in Naperville
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Historic quarry-turned-swimming facility in 1931. Includes sand, grassy area for picnicking, shallow-end slide, water play features, diving boards and more.
Reviewed July 28, 2013

I swam at Centennial Beach when I was a child in the early 1980's, and now that my son is 7 years old, he loves Centennial, as well. My parents still live in Naperville, so we visit this beach every year. It costs $6 for out of towners to enter. There are open-air changing stations, but I recommend snagging one of the family-friendly bathrooms to change in and out of your bathing suits. The bathrooms are large, clean, with a private shower and a bench to pile all your stuff.

There is a large food area that sells sandwiches, salads, hamburgers, ice cream etc and it takes both cash and credit cards. I suggest bringing your own chair to sit on, as your choices are either grass or sand. There are numerous shady spots, and plenty of room to spread out. There are many lifeguards on duty, and they are vigilant about making sure that no underage swimmers go in the 15 ft. deep area unless they pass a swim test.

The swimming pool is wheelchair accessible, and there is an elevator to help people get from the parking lot level to the beach level. The pool hosts a popular 'special swim' 4x a year in the summer for families and friends of people with disabilities to come and swim without large crowds. Highly recommend

Thank andromedaeve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (137)
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"deep end"
in 18 reviews
"zero depth"
in 9 reviews
"sand area"
in 8 reviews
"swim test"
in 6 reviews
"snack bar"
in 9 reviews
"great beach"
in 5 reviews
"summer fun"
in 6 reviews
"old quarry"
in 7 reviews
"life jackets"
in 4 reviews
"high dive"
in 4 reviews
"on duty"
in 4 reviews
"adirondack chairs"
in 4 reviews
"bring your own"
in 8 reviews
"swim laps"
in 3 reviews
"open water"
in 3 reviews
"concession stand"
in 4 reviews
"hot summer day"
in 4 reviews

103 - 107 of 137 reviews

Reviewed July 20, 2013

Centennial Beach has become my preferred place to swim in the Chicagoland area. Here are some thoughts regarding the overall Centennial Beach experience.

Good Stuff
I like to go to Centennial Beach primarily for its deep end swimming. The water is 15 feet deep and tends to be a little cooler than in the shallow end. There are three diving boards to enjoy, one high and two low, and there are also two floating platforms out in the middle of the lake. Even though the beach gets pretty crowded on hot days, the deep end is large enough that you won’t feel crowded. There is plenty of room to swim around without bumping into other people.

If you arrive after 5:00 PM, the cost to enter the beach is only $3 per person (for both residents and nonresidents). Parking is free and the concessions are reasonably priced with most items ranging from $1 to $4. If you don't care for their fare, you can also bring in your own food and drinks.

Perhaps my favorite thing about Centennial Beach is that it doesn’t leave you smelling like chlorine. While there are some amounts of chemicals in the water for sanitation purposes, they are not especially strong and you might not even notice that there is anything in the water. I would still recommend that you use the showers before departing, as they have free soap dispensers and warm water. You may want to bring your own shampoo if you intend to thoroughly cleanse yourself.

Things to Know
Young children who have not graduated from the 8th grade are not allowed to swim in the deep end unless they have passed the deep water test. This test is administered three times a day (12:50 PM, 2:50 PM, and 5:50 PM). To pass the test, children must swim a total of 100 meters using the front crawl stroke. If you have young kids that can handle this swim, you should plan to arrive just before these times so that your kids can be tested.

The deep water swimming area is cleared at the top of every hour for safety checks. Everyone will be asked to leave the water for about 10 to 20 minutes while the lifeguards reset or administer the deep water test. As a result, you should plan to bring something with you to keep you occupied. I usually bring a Frisbee or football that I can throw around with my friends while we’re waiting. They also have a sand volleyball court, so you could consider bringing a volleyball as well.

Centennial Beach really has something for just about everyone. If you don't like to swim you could always play in the sand on the beach or just lounge out on the ample lawn. There are plenty of shaded areas and picnic tables to help you enjoy your stay. Bring some friends and you're sure to have a great time!

1  Thank kasejason
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2013

I had not been to Centennial Beach for years. We took our grand kids on Sunday, July 7th. It was crowded but because it is huge we stil enjoyed our afternoon. It was a perfect place for kids. Everyone was well behaved. I saw no behavioral issues the entire afternoon. We were allowed to bring food and drinks. A great savings for a large group. Although we did not partake of the food, we noted that many people were enjoying burgers and ice cream. There were many lifeguards and safety breaks. Although there were not may slides or diving boards, the kids and adults had a great time. Recommend for family adventure.

Thank nippon703
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 30, 2013

Essentially, this is a giant pool. The crowds are a giant problem. Think of a pool mixed with the crowds of Walt Disney World. I can say that the life guard staff appears to be top notch - they are on top of it and I would be shocked if anyone could drown, despite how big this pool is. If you've never been here, think of a pool the size of a small lake - no kidding. It's huge. The deep end isn't as crowded.

1  Thank Paul_11930
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 3, 2013

Centennial Beach is a beautiful outdoor pool with a beach feel. Centennial Beach like the names says was actually created in 1931 on the 100th birthday of the founding of the City of Naperville in 1831. At that time 39 Naperville residents each put up $500 each to purchase the former stone quarry to build an in town beach. Naperville is approximately 32 miles from Lake Michigan and its beaches so this was envisioned as a perfect spot for those in the ever-expanding Chicago suburbs to spend a day without having to travel all the way into Chicago. Today about 155,000 people use Centennial Beach every year between Memorial Day (end of May) and Labor Day. (Beginning of September).

The admission rate is for the entire day and is higher for non-residents. But if you just need a few hours of evening cool off; admission is last I knew (2010 year rates) $3 for the rest of the evening.

1  Thank WorldTravelers34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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