Rec centre offers diverse summer programming

In addition to arts and crafts, outdoor activities, and field trips, there will be several presentations by local non-profit organizations

The Hope & District Recreation Centre has added a variety of new programs this summer to keep kids entertained.

In addition to arts and crafts, outdoor activities, and field trips, there will be several presentations by local non-profit organizations that provide an educational component.

“Offering programming that will suit every kid’s need is really important and meeting the needs of the public is really our goal,” said Mandy Arbuckle, assistant manager of recreation, culture and airport services.

With summer vacation kicking off this week, the WaterWise program will help kids learn about water, boating and shoreline safety through demonstrations and visual aids. A new Hug-A-Tree program, presented by local search and rescue members, aims to teach kids how to avoid becoming lost, what to do if they become lost, how to stay safe if lost and how to help searchers find them. Camp attendees can also participate in a bear aware program this summer and learn about the night sky through the eyes of a telescope with local astronomer Bill Burnyeat.

In addition to presentations at the rec centre, several field trips are planned. They include a day of crafts, singing and games at the Harrison Hot Springs Children’s Festival on July 10, and a visit to Blue Heron Nature Reserve on July 15, The Greater Vancouver Zoo on Aug. 2, Aldor Acres on Aug. 19 and Bridal Falls Waterpark on Aug. 30. Hope Mountain Centre will also host trips to learn about flora, fauna and the Fraser River watershed.

“They’re really fun and interactive programs, and they’re all geared towards the age group,” said Arbuckle, adding that she hopes to bring in additional programing and continue working with rec centre staff to encourage more people to use the facility.

Arbuckle recently relocated to the Fraser Valley from Vancouver to take on her job at the rec centre. She has a degree in tourism management and entrepreneurship, as a well as a certificate in eco-tourism and outdoor leadership. Prior to Hope, she worked in communication and administration for Mt. Seymour Resorts and Sea-to-Sky Park Services.

For more information on summer programs, call 604-869-2304.