Summer recreation program offers variety of fun

Sean C. Morgan

This year’s Summer Fun in the Parks program will feature seven weekly events, including the annual river rafting trip.

The summer recreation program begins June 30 with “Games and More Games” at Sankey Park from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. It will include running relay races, sack races, volleyball, bingo, checkers and more.

“Howdy Partner! Western Day” is 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. on July 7 at Sankey Park. Participants can start celebrating Sportsman’s Holiday and should come wearing a western vest. They will pan for gold, ride a stick horse through an obstacle course and then try their luck pinning the tail on the horse.

Hawaiian Day, “Aloha,” is 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. on July 14 at Sankey Park. Kids should wear flip-flops and Hawaiian shirts and try their luck in a limbo contest and a hula hoop marathon. They can eat some pineapple and have fun in a make-believe island vacation.

On July 21, from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., children can “Plant a Flower, Find a Bug and Eat a Worm” at Sankey Park. They should be ready to get their hands dirty as they help the local gardening club plant a flower or an edible herb the children can take home and watch grow. The craft for the day will help children find a bug they can look at close up. Snacks for the day will be gummy earth worms.

Everyone’s birthday will be up for celebration on July 28, from 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. at Ashbrook Park. The program includes a barbecue and cake, with a junk food walk, balloon relay races and crafts.

“Grab a grandparent and Float the River” is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Aug. 4 at Wiley Creek Park. Children are asked to bring a grandparent to float the South Santiam River from Wiley Creek Park to Northside Park. At the end of the ride, they will have dessert and see who will win the annual tug o’ war contest.

“It’s Time to Get Wet” on Aug. 11, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at Northside Park. Activities include water balloons, sprinklers and lots of water to wrap up the 2011 Fun in the Parks season.

The program has two fewer weeks than last year, said Edene Flierl, city planning assistant. “Last year, the last two we did in August, attendance was really low.”

The program drew 110 on the busiest week last year, with a weekly average about 65 children attending.

Lunches will be provided by the School District 55 lunch program, Flierl said.

Everyone attending will receive a free t-shirt.

The cost is $15 to attend all events. For the rafting trip alone, the cost is $10.

For more information, call Flierl at 367-8113.

A registration form is available online at