Category: recreation

Holiday store, recreation and restauarant open; Graham-Mebane lake closes

Elizabeth Pattman
| Times-News


Dewey’s Bakery Holiday Fundraising Store is now open in Alamance Crossing. The store, located at 1019 Boston Drive, is a full Dewey’s Bakery store benefiting Connect 4 Faith’s Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Initiative. Fresh cookies, cakes, cheese straws and more treats are available Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. For more information, email [email protected] or call 336-850-1008.

The downtown Graham ice skating rink is now open through Dec. 20. Forty-five-minute skating sessions begin on the hour at 213 South Main Street. Skating and skate rentals are also free, but there is a small cost for concessions. Due to COVID-19, there is a maximum of 20 people on the ice at one time and masks are required on and off the ice. The rink is open 1 to 8 p.m. on Sundays, 5 to 8 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, 5 to 9 p.m. on Fridays and noon to 10 p.m. on Saturdays. On Thursday nights between 5 and 8 p.m., you can reserve the rink for just your group or family for $25. If the rink is not reserved that night, it will be open to the public. For updates or inclement weather information, visit the Graham Recreation & Parks Facebook page.

More: Alamance COVID numbers climb through Thanksgiving week


Hibachi Buffet at Holly Hill Mall will reopen under new ownership on Dec. 4. The restaurant will now prepare food in front of customers, rather than in a buffet style.

The Cedarock Equestrian Center reopened this week. Located at 5160 Friendship Patterson Mill Road in Burlington, the equestrian center offers 6 miles of dedicated horse trails and a riding ring. Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Equestrian Center and trails will close during heavy rains and inclement weather. Visit Facebook to check for closings.

More: Owners of Smitty’s Homemade Ice Cream selling business


Graham-Mebane Lake has closed for the season. The lake will reopen on Feb. 5.

Have an item for Open & Shut? Email Elizabeth Pattman at [email protected] anytime.

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The Office Or Parks And Recreation Quiz: Who Said It

Whenever you think of any NBC shows to watch, the two most common shows that come up are The Office and Parks and Rec, both produced by legendary TV producer Micheal Schur. The man is a genius for creating both of these incredible, thought-provoking shows. From hilarious insight into the suffocating grey aura of a typical American workplace to their goofy characters.

Running these weird offices of Scranton and Pawnee are the unique and polar opposite bosses Michael Scott and Ron Swanson. Michael loves his job and tries hard to be a better boss every day, considers the office as a family and worries for his employees’ happiness, but his stupidity, insensitivity and completely offensive behaviour only aggravates them. While Ron Swanson is the complete opposite and couldn’t care less about what his employees do and he may run the department, but seems to do the least work often talking about how corrupt the government is, even though he works for the same.

But what connects these two iconic TV characters is the love from fans, whether you laugh at Michael’s downright erroneous cringey misquotes or simply giggle over Swanson’s comments on manliness or his kooky love for food. Can you tell these two archetypal bosses apart from their quotes alone?

Answers are at the end!

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Panel to discuss disability sport and recreation in COVID-19

The panel will feature a discussion that focuses on what the rebuild of disability sport and recreation may look like in Victoria and what role sporting organisations can play in this new, post-COVID world.

The discussion will be hosted by diversity and inclusion specialist, Rana Hussain, and features lived experience of disability.

Our speakers:

  • Matthew Haanappel – Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator, Active Monash
  • Ned Brewer-Maiga – Community Assistant – Social Inclusion, Hawthorn Football Club
  • Sarah Anderson – Chair, Disability Sport & Recreation
  • Libby Mears – CEO, Leisure Network

Attendees will learn how their organisation can support people with disability to actively engage with sport and recreation in 2021, with practical strategies and examples on how to do this.

After a challenging year, DSR CEO Richard Amon said it would be refreshing to look at how the sector can collectively work together to get more people with disability physically active in 2021.

“We’ve all had the experience of missing out on community sport during the COVID-19 pandemic. People with disability, however, are particularly at risk of being left behind in the return to sport.

“It is up to us to work together to remove the barriers that prevent participation.

“We have worked with our partners to develop a range of resources that support organisations who work in the sport and recreation sector to meaningfully engage people with disability and change the narrative moving forward.

“This is even more timely given that 2021 is a Paralympics year. We hope this panel discussion will get you thinking outside the box about how you can create a better future for all Victorians.”

VicHealth Physical Activity and Sport Manager, Chris Lacey, said sporting organisations will play a key role in supporting people with disability to reconnect with their community in the coronavirus recovery.

“It’s been great to support Disability Sport & Recreation to bring this expert panel together,” he said.

“This panel will provide sporting organisations with practical information and examples on how to ensure Victorians with disability can participate in sport and physical activity in 2021 and into the future.”

This panel is presented as the first session of the 2020 Victorian Disability Sport and Recreation Festival – a unique community event that promotes and celebrates physically active lifestyles for people with disability.

This year the festival is going virtual – with interactive sessions, videos, Q&As and special panels all aimed at engaging people with disability and those who support them.

We encourage everyone that attends the panel discussion to stay on the festival platform and watch the official opening speeches, including a message from Dr Sandro Demaio, CEO VicHealth.

This panel is free to attend but registration is required to access the festival platform.

Register now to access the festival and attend the panel

When: Friday 11 December 2020

Time: 8:00am – 8:50am

/Public Release. The material in this public release comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here.
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Sparta Recreation Department’s First Christmas Tree Lighting and Other Holiday Events

SPARTA, NJ- The first Sparta Township Christmas tree lighting had to be held without a crowd.  The only element of the celebration that remained was the tree lighting on the front lawn of the Sparta VFW on Main Street on Thursday night.

Sparta Recreation Director Jeanne Montemarano was joined by elves Alison Deeney, Kelly Giannantonio, Janice Williams, Mayor Jerry Murphy, Deputy Mayor Christine Quinn and Mr. and Mrs. Clause.  

Plans originally included Santa in a snow globe for photos along with other activities typical for the annual Sparta Recreation Visit with Santa.  The most recent executive orders from Governor Murphy limiting indoor and outdoor crowds caused the activities to be canceled.

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According to Sparta Recreation Director Jeanne Montemarano they are expanding Santa’s ride through the community on the fire truck on the weekend of December 11 and 12, weather permitting.  In past years, Santa would take an hour to ride through town on his way to meet children and their families at Station Park. 

Additional Christmas events are being offered by the Sparta Recreation Department.

Sparta children can mail letters to Santa and Santa will mail a letter in return.  They can be sent to Sparta Recreation at 65 Main Street in Sparta.  The Recreation department staff will make sure they get to the North Pole in time for Santa to respond. They even provide stationary.

Sparta Recreation is also sponsoring a Holiday Home Decorating contest.  For the first time residents will be able to register their home for consideration. 

  • Homes must be registered by December 11
  • Between December 14 and 16 The Sparta Recreation department staff will photograph the homes that are registered.
  • On December 17 the photos will be posted on the Sparta Recreation Department Facebook page,
  • The two homes with the most “likes” will win.
  • On December 22 the winners will be announced on the Sparta Recreation Department Facebook page.

The first and second place winners will receive a prize and a sign to display on their front lawn, according to the recreation department announcement.

Montemarano said details for the Menorah lighting, scheduled for next Thursday, are also being discussed.

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Mark Bennett: A path of safety, adventure and recreation underway, at last | News Columns

Just outside West Terre Haute on Tuesday morning, a young woman walked toward Terre Haute along U.S. 150 as cars and trucks sped past her.

Mark Bennett: A path of safety, adventure and recreation underway, at last

Tribune-Star/Mark BennettProgress underway: Ben Leege stands beside the substructure of a new pedestrian walkway adjacent to the south side of U.S. 150 between West Terre Haute and Terre Haute. Leege is the Indiana Department of Transportation’s project engineer on the effort.

She walked just a few feet from traffic. That’s because there’s almost no shoulder area between the edge of the highway and the steel roadside barriers. “The Grade,” the 1.1-mile stretch of roadway between the two towns, is risky for the numerous people who walk or bicycle to their destinations.

At that same moment Tuesday, construction continued on a remedy to the longtime hazard.

It’s a success story, a community-wide effort that will provide safety, as well as an economic boost and recreational opportunities.

Anyone who’s driven between Terre Haute and West Terre Haute since late August has undoubtedly noticed the early-stage progress on a new pedestrian walkway, adjacent to the south side of the U.S. 150 pavement.

Once it’s finished in October 2021, that young woman and other pedestrians or bike riders will be able to trek to and from West T and the Haute without feeling the air gusts of SUVs and pickups that motor by at an average rate of 16,000 vehicles a day, according to 2018 figures from the West Central Indiana Economic Development District.

This solution to that decades-old problem alone validates the project’s $6.2-million cost.

The walkway opens up other benefits, too.

Mark Bennett: A path of safety, adventure and recreation underway, at last

Tribune-Star/Mark BennettScenic: A new pedestrian walkway on the south side of U.S. 150 between West Terre Haute and Terre Haute will offer its users a clear view of the Wabashiki Fish and Wildlife Area, shown here.

It unlocks a virtual dead-end to the popular National Road Heritage Trail, which winds for 30 miles through eastern and central Vigo County and across the Wabash River before reaching the no-room-to-safely-walk-or-bike segment of U.S. 150. Thanks to the walkway, the Heritage Trail system could someday connect Vigo County’s four college campuses. Heritage Trail also can now extend to Illinois and link with burgeoning trail systems in Vermillion, Parke and Sullivan counties.

And, the walkway makes the Wabashiki Fish and Wildlife Area and its Wabashiki Trail more accessible. The new pedestrian bridge will run alongside the 2,700-acre wetlands, which was set aside by the state of Indiana in 2010. The numbers of hunters, anglers, bird-watchers, hikers, runners and picnickers using Wabashiki’s amenities will grow.

Terre Haute and West Terre Haute could become a destination for groups of cyclists, runners and outdoors enthusiasts, just like other Midwestern towns that anchor long-running trail systems.

Constructing the walkway on the slope between the highway and wetlands requires some architectural finesse.

Three-hundred steel pilings are being driven 30 to 60 feet deep into the soil to support the walkway, explained Ben Leege, the Indiana Department of Transportation’s project engineer. Those 12-inch-diameter pilings are then

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Mayor Stothert names new Director of Parks, Recreation and Public Property

Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert has named a new Director of Parks, Recreation and Public Property.

a screen shot of a man: Matt Kalcevich

© Provided by KETV Omaha
Matt Kalcevich

Matt Kalcevich comes to Omaha from Des Moines, where he worked as recreation manager. Kalcevich has worked in that field for more than a decade.

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Stothert’s office said Kalcevich graduated from Nothern Arizona University in 2001 and obtained a Master’s degree in recreation management from Arizona State University.

Kalcevich is set to start his new position in Omaha on Dec. 14. According to a news release from Stothert’s office, Kalcevich’s salary will be $162,318.

Kalcevich takes over for Brook Bench, who took a job in public property development.


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READ THE FULL STORY:Mayor Stothert names new Director of Parks, Recreation and Public Property

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The plan for a new aquatics and recreation center in Great Falls has hit a snag

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The plan for a new aquatics and recreation center in Great Falls has hit a snag

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Des Moines recreation manager named Omaha’s new parks director | Local News

20201109_new_miller_LS07 (Gallery) (copy)

People eat lunch under a tree bearing bright autumn leaves at Miller Park in North Omaha on Thursday, Nov. 5, 2020.

Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert has hired the city’s next director of parks, recreation and public property.

Matthew Kalcevich, recreation manager for the City of Des Moines, will begin Dec. 14. Kalcevich has more than 10 years of experience managing recreation centers, public pools, golf courses and other facilities, according to a press release from the Mayor’s Office.

He replaces longtime director Brook Bench, who left the job over the summer.

“Matt brings enthusiasm and experience to manage our park system and the wide range of recreation, leisure and athletic facilities we operate,” Stothert said in the release. “He shares our commitment to great public spaces, which contribute to Omaha’s quality of life for families and neighborhoods.”

Kalcevich will make $162,318 in the role.

Last summer, the city hired Searchwide Global, a recruitment firm, to find its next parks director. The city agreed to pay the firm 30% of the hire’s annual salary — nearly $49,000, based on Kalcevich’s pay.

He will be responsible for overseeing more than 250 city parks, eight golf courses, 18 swimming pools, 11 splash pads, four dog parks, two tennis complexes, 13 community centers, a trap and skeet center, a nature center and the city’s ice arena.

Miller Park has a whole new shine in Omaha

“I am incredibly excited to lead this amazing department and expand the wonderful facilities and programs already serving the community,” Kalcevich said in the release. “My family and I are thrilled to make Omaha our new home.”

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Muskegon, Marquette, Grand Traverse counties win big in state outdoor recreation funding

Michigan’s outdoor recreation is expected to get a boost of nearly $37.8 million in 2021, and Muskegon County is the biggest winner of funds with a single grant for $5 million.

Marquette, Grand Traverse and Ottawa counties are also raking in big bucks from the state for recreation development and land acquisition. The Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund Board this week recommended grants totaling $37,789,600 for 76 recreation projects and land acquisitions with the goal of further access to public outdoor recreation.

Muskegon County is a clear winner this year with a $5 million grant to acquire a former sand mining property for park development. Ottawa County is in line to receive nearly $1.5 million for five different projects. Park improvements and lakefront property acquisition are on deck in Grand Traverse County with nearly $1.2 million in state funds coming their way. In Marquette County, over $700,000 will help build playgrounds and trails.

RELATED: Former Nugent Sand property eyed for park development by Muskegon County

“Easy access to the beauty of Michigan’s natural places and open spaces during a challenging, uncertain year has been a source of comfort and connection for residents across our state, and the Trust Fund is a major part of making those opportunities available,” Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said in a statement.

Trails, parks and the state’s forest lands – often developed or acquired with Trust Fund grants – and other “outdoor recreation resources like these are big contributors to each community’s quality of life and unique appeal,” Whitmer said.

This year, the board recommended $27,289,600 for 30 acquisition grants and $10.5 million for 46 development grants. Most of the funding is going to local governments while eight grants worth about $7.7 million will back Michigan Department of Natural Resources projects.

Development grants are expected to fund projects in Antrim, Benzie, Berrien, Calhoun, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Eaton, Genesee, Gogebic, Grand Traverse, Houghton, Huron, Ingham, Iosco, Jackson, Kent, Leelenau, Livingston, Mackinac, Marquette, Newaygo, Oakland, Oceana, Ottawa, Saginaw, St. Clair, St. Joseph, Van Buren, Washtenaw and Wayne counties. Find out what’s coming to your county here.

Land acquisition grants are expected to fund projects in Benzie, Berrien, Cheboygan, Chippewa, Delta, Dickinson, Eaton, Gogebic, Grand Traverse, Huron, Ingham, Jackson, Kalamazoo, Kent, Lake, Lapeer, Lenawee, Macomb, Midland, Muskegon, Oakland, Ontoganon, Ottawa, Saginaw and St. Clair counties. Find out what’s coming to your county here.

This year’s projects “will make a real difference,” said DNR Director Dan Eichinger, noting the overwhelming success of Proposal 1 on the November ballot as proof of Michiganders’ support for the grant program.

RELATED: Both Michigan ballot proposals on pace to pass by record margins

Established in 1976, the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund is a restricted fund aimed at public acquisition of lands for resource protection and outdoor recreation, as well as for public outdoor recreation development projects. It is funded through interest and revenue from state-owned oil, gas and minerals. To date, the Trust Fund has granted more than $1.2 billion to state and local governments

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City Suspends Indoor Recreation Due To Rise In Covid-19 Cases

Oakland’s Town Camp Enrichment Program is being suspended because of the COVID-19 pandemic, city officials announced Thursday.

The program provides indoor recreation to school-age youth from kindergarten through fifth grade. Outdoor youth programs, senior programs, library services and homeless services will still be provided, according to city officials.

According to Alameda County, 10,884 cases of the coronavirus have been reported in Oakland as of Thursday. City officials said the recent spike in virus cases and possibly a further increase because of family holiday gatherings were behind the decision to suspend the enrichment program.

“We realize that this will be a burden on some families,” city officials said. “However, we feel it is gravely necessary for us to play our part to control the spread of COVID-19, for both the customers we serve AND our own staff and their families.”

In-person enrichment programs were provided during the summer and at recreation centers since the beginning of the school year.

“We will continue following Alameda County Public Health guidelines and protocols over the next few weeks and will communicate when we feel we can safely resume indoor programming,” city officials said.

Head Start in Oakland remains open for in-person as well as virtual services but will have an extended winter break in anticipation of the increase in coronavirus cases.

Head Start locations will be closed from Dec. 21 through Jan. 8 and open again on Jan. 11. Families will be served virtually during the winter break.

Senior centers are not open for in-person services but are delivering food and making it available for pickup as well as providing virtual classes and information and referral services. More information can be found at

Housing services for homeless residents remain in operation. Anyone interested in providing food or supplies to help homeless residents is encouraged to work with a provider of those services to reduce the risk of exposing homeless residents to the coronavirus.

Sidewalk library services continue to be provided at 16 locations during limited hours while indoor areas will stay closed to the public.

Library materials can be returned at outdoor bookdrops. The materials are quarantined for 96 hours before they are checked in.

Oakland Public Library reference librarians can be reached by calling (510) 238-3134 or by email at [email protected]

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