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updated: 3/1/2011 5:41 PM

Park district to show teens new rec center is for them

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  • Connie Payton

    Connie Payton


Connie Payton will serve as the main speaker at the Teen Fall Fitness Festival - TF3 - to be held Sept. 18 at the Barrington Park District's new Fitness & Recreation Center at Langendorf Park.

The expo-like event represents an outreach to teens in grades 6 through 9 by providing them with opportunities to improve both physical and mental health on their own terms, park district Executive Director Terry Jennings said.

While teens aren't necessarily a difficult population to reach, they do prefer such activities to be shaped by their own interests and tastes, Jennings added. Teens were strongly represented on the event's steering committee and the feedback of those attending will be sought.

The park district is hoping for at least 500 teens to attend, though no upper limit has yet been set. There is no charge for the event, but registration must be done in advance at either the teens' own schools, the park district office at 235 Lions Drive in Barrington or by downloading the form at

Payton is a longtime resident of the Barrington area whose late husband, Walter, became a Chicago Bears legend long before his death from cancer in 1999.

The event runs from noon to 4 p.m. and will consist of a variety of informational and interactive sessions. Participants must get passport stamps from at least four sessions to qualify for Payton's motivational talk at 3:30 p.m. and the dance party featuring DJ Personality Inc. that will end the event.

There will be time for as many as six sessions and the more teens attend the better chance they will have of winning such raffle prizes as an iPad, a Porkie's pig roast party for 50, and skateboard and snowboard rental for the 2011 season.

The sessions will consist of a variety of fast-paced games and fitness equipment demos, nutrition-based info like "Brain Food for Breakfast," and tips for stress reduction from Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital.

The event is a chance to show area teens that the new Fitness & Recreation Center is a place for them too. And it ties in to first Lady Michelle Obama's national "Let's Move" fitness campaign for young people, Jennings said.

The facility is being decorated for the event by art students at Barrington High School.

For more information or the latest updates, call (847) 381-0687 or check the park district's Facebook page.