On Wednesday, June 19, the Des Plaines Park District Park It! Patrol made their first stop of the summer in Bluett Park, 1408 Thayer St.
Park It! Patrol is a new, free, summertime program, bringing organized games, activities, and crafts to neighborhood parks across the district.
For six weeks, on Wednesdays from 6:30 to 8:00pm, the public is invited to play beach ball volleyball and soccer, badminton, croquet, bocce ball, bags, beanbag lawn darts, and wiffleball in the park's open space, as well as enjoy all of the park's playground equipment and amenities.
At Bluett Park, the evening began with Zumba dancing led by Lisa Carbello, licensed Zumba instructor. "Zumba is for everyone," said Carbello, "especially children who naturally move to the beat. This is a great cardio workout, disguised as a party." The Park District then set up an obstacle course using hula hoops and foam hurdles, organized a neighborhood soccer game, and helped kids make a bookmark craft. The evening's activities concluded with an old-fashioned game of wood chips. "Playing outdoors, a child's brain has the chance to rejuvenate and all of his senses get activated. Our playgrounds are the perfect place for inclusive, imaginative children's play, and cardio and strength training, too," said Paul Cathey Superintendent of Parks and Planning. "The Park It! Patrol is a wonderful way to reacquaint neighbors with their park, and encourage children to put down their screens and come out and play," said Linda Traina, Superintendent of Recreation. "Playing is good for the body and the brain," Traina said.
The Park It! Patrol will be in: Des Plaines Manor Park, 198 E. Fremont on June 26; Eaton Field Park, 2795 Craig Drive on July 10; Cherokee Park, 1260 White Street on July 17; Menominee Park, 440 Laurel Avenue on July 24; and Mohawk Park, 515 Lyman Avenue on July 31. Games, crafts, and activities happen from 6:30-8:00pm and all are free! "Even if one of these is not in your neighborhood," said Traina, "everyone is invited to party in the parks!"
For a map of the locations of the parks and to see all of the park's features, visit www.DPParks.org. For more information about Zumba classes for all ages and free summer time activities at the Des Plaines Park District, visit www.DPParks.org, or call 847-391-5700.