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Address

Office Location:

Park and Recreation 5841 Brookshire Blvd Charlotte, NC 28216

Hours: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. M - F

Contact

Patsy Houston
704-336-3854

DECEMBER 2009

Very best holiday greetings from Director Jim Garges and the entire staff at Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Department. Welcome again to our monthly e-newsletter. We hope you or your family can find something fun to do in these listings and can visit our great facilities—parks, recreation centers, nature preserves, golf courses, aquatic facilities, etc. Mecklenburg Park and Recreation is "the natural place to be," even in winter!

   
Park and Rec fitness centers can help work off pounds from holiday food and help you keep your New Year's resolutions.  

GET A SPECIAL DEAL THIS HOLIDAY SEASON AT PARK AND REC FITNESS CENTERS, THEN START WORKING-OUT FOR A NEW YOU IN THE NEW YEAR!

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation offers special deals at its seven fitness centers during December and January. Sign-up Dec.1-Jan. 31 for a new individual or family annual pass, or a Ray pass (good at all centers), and receive a 15 month membership for the cost of 12 months. That's three months for FREE! Our centers offer cardiovascular workouts, exercise machines, and free weight equipment at very economical rates. Rates vary depending on equipment and size of each center. Park and Rec fitness staff can help you get started and keep you motivated. Click here  for a list of centers and how to sign-up.


CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING IN FREEDOM PARK, DECEMBER 12; EVENT FEAURES HAY RIDE, CRAFTS AND A TOY AND COAT DRIVE

Park and Rec, along with Lite 102.9FM, kick off the holiday season Dec. 12 with the lighting of a large Christmas tree at the Alan Newcomb Parkshell (often called the "bandshell") beside the lake in Freedom Park. The tree lighting is at 6pm. Guests are invited to bring an ornament for the tree. Before the tree lighting, there will be FREE activities for the entire family. Activities begin at 3pm and include a hay ride around the lake, Santa's arts and crafts, face painting, holiday music and performers, plus a chance to visit with Santa and RAY, the Park and Rec mascot, 4:30pm-5:30pm. Guests are also encouraged to bring a toy to donate to Toys for Tots or a coat for Cloth Charlotte's coat drive. For more information call 704 432-4280.


   
The Holly Bend House was built by Robert Davidson of Revolutionary War fame. It was once center of a 2800 acre plantation.  

CEREMONY TO MARK PURCHASE OF LARGE HISTORIC TRACT IN NORTH MECK FOR NATURE PRESERVE, WATERSHED PROTECTION

Park and Rec invites the public to a special ceremony on Wed., Dec. 2 at 3pm to celebrate the purchase of 211 acres in northern Mecklenburg for watershed protection along Mountain Island Lake. The ceremony will be at the colonial era "Holly Bend" house, on the property at 3710 Neck Road , Huntersville. This land presents an important opportunity to protect Mountain Island Lake, which provides more than 80% of public drinking water in Charlotte-Mecklenburg. The County designated the land a Park and Recreation nature preserve. Keeping the land in natural condition protects the lake from pollution, run-off and development. The County paid $6.6 million for the property, funded by land bonds approved by voters. The site includes the historic Holly Bend house, built in 1795 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Re-enactors of the colonial period will greet people at the ceremony. Attendees may tour the historic house, decked out for Christmas.


WINTER WONDERLAND, TREE TRIMMINGS HIGHLIGHT WINTER AND CHRISTMAS EVENTS AT MANY PARK AND REC FACILITIES

Park and Recreation offers many wonderful winter and holiday activities for everyone, especially youngsters. Many activities are free. Some require a small fee. A Winter Wonderland at First Ward Recreation Center and a tree trimming at 521 Recreation Center are among festive events this year. The Winter Wonderland features games, arts and crafts, face-painting and a possible visit from Santa Claus. The Tree Trimming at 521 offers fun and fellowship outside the gazebo with the lighting of the Christmas tree, as well as caroling, light refreshments, and a visit from Santa! For a list of winter and Christmas events, dates and locations, Christmas Events.


   
You knew Santa likes snow. But did you know he likes the water, too?  

CHILDREN CAN "SWIM WITH SANTA"AT RAY'S SPLASH PLANET AGAIN THIS YEAR FOR A SPECIAL HOLIDAY TREAT

Here's an unusual way to celebrate the holiday season! Our indoor water Park, Ray's Splash Planet, invites children, ages 1-12, to "Swim with Santa" Dec. 17, 5:30pm-7pm. Admission is $10. Santa really gets in the water in a modest and old-fashioned bathing suit. Parents are invited to accompany young children. Attendees will have an opportunity to take pictures as Santa slides down the three story high Blue Comet Water Slide and relaxes in the Lazy River. Santa will be available to visit with kids, so they might want to bring their wish lists.


   
NC Sailing & Rowing is one of many organizations Park and Recreation partners with to bring special activities to the community.  

NC SAILING CENTER AT BLYTHE LANDING IS OFF TO GREAT START, PLANS TO EXPAND IN THE NEW YEAR

The success of the North Carolina Community Sailing and Rowing Center, which served more than 250 sailors and rowers, has encouraged NCCSR to plan significant expansion in 2010 with special emphasis on sailing and rowing programs for young people. The center is in Park and Rec's  Blythe Landing park on Lake Norman. The center plans to almost triple its capacity for school age programs in the new year. It will add paid instructors and schedule rowing programs through the winter. Next year, the center plans to serve more than 750 sailors and rowers of all ages





SPECIAL MEMORIAL SERVICE IN FRAZIER PARK TO OBSERVE NATIONAL CHILDREN'S MEMORIAL DAY, DECEMBER 12

Our Children's Memorial Walkway invites anyone grieving the loss of a child or friend of any age to attend the walkway's 9th annual National Children's Memorial Day Service at 2pm, Sat. Dec. 12. The service is on the walkway in .Frazier Park , 1201 West 4th Street . This year's keynote speaker is Kitty Huffsetler whose daughter, DeAnna Greiner, died of cancer. Ms. Huffsetler published journals and poems of her daughter's experience in a book called This Side of Heaven. This service is the weekend of National Children's Memorial Day, declared by Congress. Our Children's Memorial Walkways was created in 2001 through a partnership with Park and Recreation and several grief groups. It includes more than 1200 bricks engraved to memorialize departed children, also a garden, benches for meditation, and statues of playing children. For more information visit www.ocmw.org.

   
Greg Jackson has been a recreation professional for 18 years.  

GREG JACKSON NAMED DIRECTOR OF PARKS AND RECREATION IN GREENSBORO, NC'S THIRD LARGEST RECREATION DEPARTMENT

Congratulations to Mecklenburg Park and Rec official Greg Jackson, who has been named the new Director of Parks and Recreation for the City of Greensboro. He starts there Jan.19. Jackson has been director of our Park Operations Division since 2005. He managed 135 parks, a staff of 200, and all athletic programs. Of his decision to accept the position in Greensboro, Jackson says, "It was all about being a department director in a city that is a good fit for me and my family. I'm going to miss all my friends in Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation and all my friends in the county."


E-PLANT TIPS FOR WINTER FROM THE NC COOPERATVE EXTENSION SERVICE

In Mecklenburg County, the Cooperative Extension Service is part of Park and Recreation and offers the following tips for gardeners for December:
  • Chickweed and other broadleaf weeds are continuing to grow and mature. A liquid broadleaf herbicide can be used if the day time temperature is warm enough. Consult the pesticide label on the product before applying.
  • House plants can dry out fairly quickly in the winter months if they are located near heating vents. Move plants away from vent so they are not exposed to prolonged forced air.
  • Apply a second fertilizer application to your lawn if you have not done so already…ex. 10 lbs of a 10-10-10 fertilizer per 1000 sq. ft.
  • Remove dead, diseased, and wind-damaged branches on trees.

VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES AT MECKLENBURG COUNTY PARK AND RECREATION ARE ALMOST ALWAYS AVAILABLE; WE WELCOME YOUR HELP!

Thousands of volunteers help us at Park and Rec every year. For information on any activity or project below, or to become a volunteer, contact Lori Saylor or 704-336-5478. PLEASE NOTE: Volunteers under age 16 must be accompanied by an adult at least age 21. Volunteers in Therapeutic Recreation (TR) Division must be at Least 18 years old

  • Coaches needed for youth flag football, football, soccer, basketball, now through February.. Coaches run one weeknight practice and a game on Saturday each week. Opportunities at many Recreation Centers. Check list of   recreation centers. Call for locations available.
  • Baseball Coaches at many locations, Mar – Jun, approximately three hours a week.
  • Track and Field Coaches, at many locations from Feb. forward. Takes about three hours a week.
  • Tennis coaches for spring season at many locations. Takes about three hours a week.
  • Therapeutic Enrichment Program Volunteers at Marion Diehl recreation Center, Mondays through Fridays after school, for teens, ages13-21 with disabilities. Activities include games, gardening, sports, music, crafts, as well as life skills and socialization. Volunteer smust be at least 18 years old and able to lift at least 25 pounds, stand, and bend. Volunteers will assist set-up and break-down, supervision, etc.
  • Volunteers for Adaptive Baseball at Marion Diehl Center Adaptive Field, Saturdays Apr. 17– Jun. 5, 9:30am-10:30am and 11am – 12pm. Two hours a week total. This TR program teaches youth and teens with disabilities the fundamentals of baseball in a fun and caring atmosphere. Assist program facilitator with set up, break down and pair with players as a buddy to s assist with fielding, batting and overall encouragement.
  • Volunteers to help with the 4H Club at Greenville Recreation Center, one hour a week. Work with staff to lead a 4H program. Curriculum provided.
  • Volunteers for programs in the parks, greenways, nature preserves. You choose Date and time, we set you up with a turnkey project. Assist picking up litter, limbs and other debris; mulching, pruning, and planting. Groups needed with 5-25 volunteers.

Address

Office Location:

Park and Recreation 5841 Brookshire Blvd Charlotte, NC 28216

Hours: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. M - F

Contact

Patsy Houston
704-336-3854