The Youth Division of the Department of Parks and Recreation offers a number of special programs and events that are open to all city residents. Our goal is to provide city youth and families with a wide array of free, or low cost, recreational and educational opportunities…designed to keep both the BODY and MIND active and healthy!
We’re committed to providing a variety of programs that will draw in those with a wide range of interests and abilities. And, we’re hoping that you’ll be encouraged to try something NEW!
The list below is UPDATED periodically. Check back often!
Got an idea for a recreation program that may be of interest to the community? Give us a call or shout us an
For more information about the programs being offered, just click on the link if available, or call the main Parks Office (473-4330).
Special Programs Guide: SPRING 2011
Cooking Together for Family Meals
w/ Cornell Cooperative Extension
“Cooking Together” is a FREE, six- session cooking program that teaches families how to prepare quick and healthy meals…together! Make recipes that focus on vegetables and lean meats—meals that taste great and are good for you too! Share cooking skills with your kids. Learn how to modify recipes and make healthy food choices as a family. Registration required!
One parent and up to two children (8-15 yrs) come together!
Registration is limited, so call today (see below)
WHEN: WEDNESDAYS April 27th – June 1, 2011
TIMES: 5:00pm –7:00pm
LOCATION: Magnarelli Community Center at McChesney Park (Grant Blvd)
TO REGISTER:CALL: Kathy Dischner at 424-9485, ext 237 or 239. Leave name, ages of children, and phone number
Registration Deadline: April 21, or until filled
Fit Kids After School Programs
City Parks understands the importance of regular physical activity for improving the health of our young people. After School Fit Kids Clubs help city youth accumulate the recommended 60 minutes of daily exercise in a fun, safe environment, led by certified instructors! FREE! Registration required! Join the Fit Kids program at one of the following neighborhood centers, or call 473-4330 for more information. March 14 – May 13th, 2011:
FIT KIDS McChensey: Mondays and Wednesdays, 3pm-4pm
FIT KIDS Shonnard St Boys Club: Mondays and Wednesdays, 5pm-6pm
FIT KIDS Ed Smith School: Mondays and Wednesdays, 3pm-4pm
FIT KIDS Kirk Park: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 5pm-6pm. ZUMBA on Fridays!
FIT KIDS Wilson Park: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3:30-4:30pm. Karate on Fridays!
SHOOTING FOR A’s
w/ Syracuse University Athletics
City Parks and Syracuse University team up again to offer this unique 4-week program for GIRLS ages 10-13! Shooting for A’s combines fun athletic games with educational activities, and uses the same facilities the athletes use! Led by SU staff and student athletes. Dates: April 1, 8, 15, 29. Registration required.
Registration is limited, so call today (see below)
WHEN: THURSDAYS March 31, April 7, 14, 28(no program during Break)
TIMES: 4:30pm –6:30pm
LOCATION: Manley Field House
TO REGISTER: CALL: Chris Abbott at 473-4330, ext 3019, for information.
Get Moving CNY Get Moving again this summer with County and City Parks and the County Health Department. This free program rewards all of us for getting the recommended 30 minutes of “heart healthy” exercise for 30 straight days, and recording that activity on our cool “Get Moving Calendars”. Jogging, biking, swimming, gardening…anything that gets you moving. Tshirt and other great prizes available to those completing the challenge. Plus, there will be a raffle at the end of the program for more great prizes. Start Moving anytime from June 1 – September 1st. Visit www.onondagacountyparks.com for more calendars and more info!
OUTDOOR ADVENTURE CLUB - Join other youth throughout the city for regularly scheduled outings designed to provide fun, physical activities and take advantage of the wonderful natural environment around us! Ever try snorkeling? Rafting? Zip Lines? Hiking, Snow shoes? Don’t miss any of the action! Registration Required. Age 10-13 First Trip: June 24th: Orenda Springs Outdoor Education Ctr (rope course, zipline, etc). Fee: $20 Check the website for a full schedule of Outdoor Adventure Club activities.
EASTER EGG HUNT – free! Saturday April 23rd ***Pre-Registration Required
The annual Easter Egg Hunt for ages 10-and-under, will feature different hunts and lots of prizes for various age groups. BURNET PARK. The event is FREE, but tickets must be reserved in advance. There will be no on-site registration this year! City residents can begin registering on March 28th!
BIG RIGS DAY @ Burnet Park…Saturday MAY 14th at BURNET PARK; 11am – 3pm. Get a close-up look at some of the city’s big rigs, including those from the Syracuse Fire Dept., Police Dept., DPW, and Parks and Recreation, as well as from local industries.
HIAWATHA LAKE FISHING DERBY Saturday, May 7th; Begins at 8 a.m. – for kids up to age 16. Enjoy urban fishing in the city’s Upper Onondaga Park (Roberts Ave). Prizes awarded in three age categories. Sponsored in part by Price Chopper and the Anglers Assoc.of Onondaga
The following programs are ONGOING:
After-School “Drop-in” Recreation Program
The City of Syracuse operates daily, drop-in recreation programs out of 8 Community Center and 2 school-based facilities during the after-school hours. Drop-In recreation is free of charge and may include a variety of fun, engaging programs and games designed to keep both the body and mind active! All activities are led by experienced recreation staff or qualified volunteers. Drop-In recreation is open to city youth aged 7-15. Programs for older teens are available where noted. Space may be limited, and some programs require advanced registration. Call the center for more information.
Teen Recreation: Afternoon and Evening Program
City teens may stop by any of the sites listed for supervised “drop-in” recreation…based on the schedules posted. Stay active with basketball, kickball, whiffle, or other gym games. Or enjoy board/video games and other special activities with your friends.
Hamilton Street Boys & Girls Club: Mon-Tues-Wed-Thurs: 6 p.m. - 9 p.m beginning Oct. 1(579-1050)
Shonnard Street Boys & Girls Club: Mon – Fri: 5 p.m. - 9 p.m. (475-5069)
Schiller Park Recreation Center: Mon-Wed; Fri: 6 p.m. –9 p.m. (473-4780)
McChesney Recreation Center: Fridays: 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. (473-2673)
Northeast Community Center: Mon and Fri: 5 p.m. - 9 p.m. (472-5502)
Southwest Community Center: Mon – Fri: 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. (474-6823)
“Kids Café” Hot Meals Program
Through a partnership with Food Bank of CNY, the City of Syracuse is pleased to offer free hot meals for neighborhood youth at 3 neighborhood community centers beginning October 2009.
- Bova Center at Schiller Park
- Wilson Park Community Center
- Seals Community Center at Kirk Park
The meals are served daily (Mon-Fri) during the after-school program. Please call the center for specific serving times. Meals are not available when the center is closed (government holidays, field trips, etc).
Table Tennis Thursdays @ Schiller Park
If it’s Thursday, then you know that it’s Table Tennis Night at the Bova Center in Schiller Park. Join the Syracuse Table Tennis Association for free instruction and semi-competitive play every Thursday evening beginning at 6:00pm. Just stop by…no registration required. Also, find out about competitive tournaments in and around Syracuse! Call the Bova Center (473-4780)