May 1971 - Princess Anne Park
opened as the City's fourth major park, which is currently undergoing major renovation to become a planned gateway to the Princess Anne Commons corridor.
July 1973 - Mount Trashmore Park opened, gaining international attention due to the unique aspects of converting a landfill into a park.
May 1977 - Kempsville Recreation Center opened as our first multi-faceted center with numerous amenities.
December 1982 - Munden Point Park, located on the Intracoastal Waterway, opened to the public.
December 1987 - A bond referendum was approved by the voters providing for the construction and operation of three large, multi-faceted community recreation centers and the renovation of the Bow Creek facility.
June 1990 - Great Neck Recreation Center and Great Neck Park opened to the public in June 1990 with Bayside Recreation Center opening April 1992, and Princess Anne Recreation Center opening in March 1994.
Get Ready to Get Wet at the Williams Farm Sprayground!
Since Williams Farm Recreation Center opened last October, kids (and adults) have had a blast splashing in the pool, climbing the aquatic rock wall, slipping down the slide and playing in the pool playground. Just one thing has been off-limits and that's about to change. It's been too cool to enjoy the outdoor sprayground, but beginning in mid-May, we'll have it open for the weekends! After Memorial Day, the sprayground will be open every day, weather-permitting.
The sprayground is intended for young children through pre-teens and is a great way to beat the heat during the summer. You don't need swimming skills to enjoy the area. Kids of all abilities will have fun splashing through 18 play features which have playful sprays, squirts and mists of water that shoot from below-ground and above-ground features.
Monday - Friday | 11:30 am - 8 pm
Saturday | 9 am - 4:30 pm
Sunday | 11 am - 4:30 pm
A recreation center membership or day pass is needed to access the sprayground. Look for a specific opening date in next month's newsletter!
Swim Tip: Freestyle Pull
Arms feeling fatigued while you swim the freestyle? When your hands enter the water, try to pitch them at 15-45 degrees, so they'll enter the water more smoothly. This technique helps reduce the stress on your joints, allowing you to swim longer.
Giving Back as a Safety Camp Graduate
Safety Camp is a week-long camp for third graders held during Spring Break. As the name implies, the theme of the week is safety, from water safety and emergency response to drug education and anti-bullying. Last year, when Trinity Wilkening was in third grade, she participated in Safety Camp and had fun engaging in the week's activities, especially the time spent in the pool. This year, now a fourth grader, Trinity got to attend Safety Camp again, but this time as a volunteer.
Trinity is a Junior Lifeguard
and volunteered her time during the campers' visits to the pool each day. From her viewpoint, she saw the campers get better at something every day. She watched them transition from being fearful of the water to fully submerging their faces underwater to retrieve rings. According to Trinity, the most exciting thing to see is someone learning to swim. When asked her impression of the swim instructors, Trinity felt they work hard and really want to help the kids, and they also have a lot of fun.
Overall, Trinity asserts that the most important skill taught during the water safety portion of each camper's day is learning how to swim. "Water is all around us; knowing how to swim helps you to be more safe," she says. As a Junior Lifeguard, Trinity was able to see how important rules are for keeping people safe while they enjoy the pool. She notes that she had to stop some campers who were trying to climb on each other and redirect them to play more safely. The swim instructors and lifeguards on duty really appreciated Trinity's help during the camp and hope she will inspire more young people to get trained and come join our safety team as volunteers.
If your child loves the water and is interested in assisting our lifeguards while learning new skills, consider registering them for a Junior Lifeguard
class. This course also helps provide the on-ramp to becoming a lifeguard. *Note that the April class has already started, but we'll have classes beginning in June and July as well.