Ripley Park has outstanding water quality and clarity! The Jefferson County Public Health Department samples the beach water weekly during the summer to test for bacteria. Generally, the water at Ripley Park beach is safe for swimming. Results of the water testing will vary during the season depending on usage and environmental factors.
To view the current beach status, visit the Wisconsin DNR page.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requires that beaches be posted with an advisory sign informing the public of increased health risk when a water sample exceeds 235 colony-forming units of E. coli per 100 milliliters of water.
The “Advisory” standard of 235 CFU/100 mL (E. coli in water) was adopted based upon data from three USEPA studies indicating the risk of acquiring a gastrointestinal illness as a result of using recreational waters.
The water is still, generally, safe for swimming. Yellow Advisory signs would be posted at the entrance to the park as well as throughout the park. It is highly recommended to not ingest the water, shower after swimming, and do not touch food after swimming in the water before eating. Some people who are at higher risk for illness are babies, toddlers, elderly adults, and anyone with a compromised immune system.
If the water samples exceed 1,000 CFR/100ML, the Public Health Department would require the beach to be closed. Red closure signs would be posted at the park entrance and the beach fence would be up to close access to the beach.
For more information regarding Beach Safety and Beach Water Quality, call (920) 674-7275