Hanover Township's Open Gym program, which began in 1995 to give schoolchildren something to do over the holiday break, returns beginning Monday, Dec. 20. The program for younger children and teens offers fun-filled recreational, artistic and educational activities.
Recreational activities include basketball, soccer and dodgeball. Arts and crafts activities will be plentiful and the game room will feature backgammon, chess, checkers, Connect Four and other mind-boggling games. Educational activities include programs by Renz Addiction Counseling Center on drugs and alcohol.
The free program will be held from 12-4 p.m. different days at different locations for different age groups: Monday, Dec. 20, at Bartlett Elementary School, 111 North Ave., Door 6, for ages 5-14; Tuesday, Dec. 21, at Laurel Hill Elementary, 1750 Laurel Ave. in Hanover Park for ages 5-14; Tuesday, Dec. 28, at Eastside Recreation Center, 1080 East Chicago St. in Elgin for ages 5-16; and Wednesday, Dec. 29, Teft Middle School, 1100 Shirley Ave. in Streamwood for ages 7-18.
The Open Gym program has served more than 32,000 youth since its inception. It was developed as an anti-gang prevention program. Sponsors include the hosting towns and their park districts, Elgin Unit District 46 and Hanover Township. For information or to volunteer, call Hanover Township Youth and Family Services at (630) 483-5799.