2018 has been another busy summer for Philadelphia Parks & Recreation. We have hosted day camps, programs like Parks on Tap and The Oval+, pool openings, movie nights, and much more. And though it’s hard to believe, summer is winding down. So far in August, Parks & Rec has held several annual events that mark the end of summer.
Learn more about Parks & Rec’s end-of-summer celebrations below.

Performing arts camp productions

In early August, Parks & Rec’s performing arts summer camps put on 17 shows in seven days! Productions included:
  • Jekyll & Hyde at the Venice Island Performing Arts & Recreation Center
  • In the Heights at the Venice Island Performing Arts & Recreation Center
  • Beauty & the Beast at the Annenberg’s Prince Theatre (pictured above)
  • “Kids Take the Stage” at the Dell Music Center
  • “A Dance Explosion Concert” at the Annenberg’s Zellerbach Theatre
With only six weeks of rehearsal, the campers performed fantastic shows. Families and Parks & Rec summer camps were invited to attend the performances.

City-wide swim meets

Children swimming at the Youth Swim Meet

In the beginning of August, winners from Parks & Rec district swim meets moved on to compete in the Little Quaker Swim Meet at Awbury Pool and the Youth Swim Meet at Lee Pool. Plus, Parks & Rec lifeguards faced off at their own competition at Vogt Pool on August 9.
At these championship meets, athletes from each district competed in:
  • freestyle
  • backstroke
  • butterfly
  • breaststroke
  • relays
Thank you to the Philadelphia Parks & Recreation staff who came to assist!

Fire Prevention Drama Festival

A fire prevention performance at Father Judge High School
Kids from recreation centers across Philadelphia wrote and developed fire safety skits to perform at Father Judge High School on August 1. This year’s theme was Cooking Hazards Endanger Families, or “CHEF.” A panel of individuals with backgrounds in the performing arts judged the skits.
The Fire Prevention Drama Festival is an annual partnership between Parks & Rec and the Philadelphia Fire Department. Creating skits is a fun yet educational way for local children to learn the importance of fire safety.

5th Annual Play Philly Summer Challenge

A child on the rings course at Pennypack on the Delaware
Obstacle courses, inflatables, arts & crafts, and an epic dance party: a kids’ paradise! On August 8, 1,200 children from participating Philadelphia Parks & Recreation summer camps attended the 5th Annual Play Philly Summer Challenge. Play Philly, a project of Councilman Bobby Henon and Parks & Rec, brings fun and creative exercise and physical activity to recreation centers during the summer.
The Summer Challenge, Play Philly’s end of season celebration, is a kids-only outdoor play day that strives to bring fun, new, and creative forms of physical activity to children throughout the city. Play Philly had something fun for every kid to enjoy at the event, from reading books donated by the Free Library under colorful umbrellas, to getting soaked by a Philadelphia Fire Department fire truck sprinkler.

Summer WorkReady closing ceremony

2 young women awarding a check to a nonprofit representative
On August 9, Philadelphia Parks & Recreation celebrated more than 1,000 youth workers at the summer WorkReady closing ceremony at Venice Island. This year, the WorkReady workers raised $23,314 as part of their “Charity Challenge” summer project.

Northern Liberties T-shirt contest party

Girls from Northern Liberties summer camp holding fruit
Each year, recreation centers throughout the city enter Parks & Rec’s annual summer camp T-shirt contest. Shirts are judged on criteria like creativity, originality, and clarity. The 2018 winner was Northern Liberties Recreation Center, and the talented Jen Ritts designed the T-shirt. The prize for the winning rec center? A water ice and soft pretzel party for summer camp participants on August 10, the last day of camp.
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