Play Safe, Live Smart: Columbus Recreation and Parks Summer Plans
COLUMBUS, OH – Columbus Recreation and Parks
Department continues to place priority in keeping Columbus residents safe and
healthy during the public health emergency.
With guidance from Columbus Public Health and the Ohio Department of
Health, the department is moving forward with opening select programming to
provide Columbus individuals and families recreational opportunities for the
“We are incredibly encouraged by last week’s announcement
from Governor Mike DeWine, which provided guidelines for childcare, summer
youth programming and camps. Columbus
Recreation and Parks has been working diligently to develop safety protocols to
provide opportunities for young people, and we are excited to announce our
plans for the summer. As is the case with all COVID-19-related decisions, the
health, safety and well-being of our residents is our first priority,” said Mayor Andrew J. Ginther.
The department has adapted many of
its program offerings and prepared many of its facilities to ensure the safety
of residents and staff. Below are updates as of May 21, 2020:
- A number of summer programs, camps and classes will be offered beginning
June 15 with adjusted group sizes and formats. The department has developed
strict safety protocols to protect the health of residents and staff. Families
who already have registered for programming will be contacted with additional
information. If any registered family doesn’t feel comfortable participating in
programming, they can withdraw and receive a full refund.
- The department’s two signature summer events–Jazz & Ribs Fest and the
African American Cultural Festival–have been canceled due to mass gathering
requirements from the Ohio Department of Health. The department looks forward
to hosting these events in 2021.
“Columbus Recreation and Parks
serves as an important resource for our community. We will continue to work
hard to restore access to as many of our programs and facilities as safely
possible,” said Paul Rakosky, director of Columbus Recreation and Parks. “As
things continue to evolve, we will vigorously monitor the status of our
programs and apply new guidance to ensure the safety of our community and staff.”
The status of additional programs
and facilities is listed below:
- The department is the largest summer food provider in Ohio and continues
to work with key partners across the city to ensure the essential need of
providing healthy and nutritious meals to kids under age 18 this summer will
continue during this challenging time. The summer meal program, commonly known
as Go Lunch!, will continue.
- The city’s golf courses are open for seasonal play. Golfers are
encouraged to review the additional safety protocols the department has put in
place to ensure the safety of the public and staff.
- Marinas and docks for recreational access to the city’s waterways are
open. It is important all residents follow social distancing guidelines and
wear cloth masks or face coverings while participating in recreational
activities where possible.
- Columbus parks and trails remain open.
Additionally, all public playgrounds, basketball courts and public recreational
equipment are closed. This includes recreational equipment like outdoor
exercise gyms, picnic tables and sporting equipment. Recent guidance included
the reopening of racket sports, and the department will begin installing the
nets on tennis and pickleball courts, which will likely take several weeks to
Columbus Recreation and Parks
remains focused on connecting residents to nature, wellness and creativity, and
will adjust programming and resources to ensure it aligns with the health and
safety recommendations from the Ohio Department of Health and Columbus Public
resources and information about COVID-19, visit Columbus Public Health, Ohio
Department of Health or Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention. Additionally, Ohio residents with specific questions
related to COVID-19 can also call 833-4-ASK-ODH (833-427-5634). For the latest
department information and updates, visit Columbus.gov/RecParksCOVID19/
or call 614-645-3300 (and select option 3). Additional information regarding
department summer camps and programming will be available on the department
website listed above at 3:30PM EST.