Running the floating mat harder than it looks during Wipe Out Nights at the pool

Holiday activities for all ages at rec centre in Hope

Activities help collect canned goods for food hampers

As the holiday season fast approaches, it may be time to consider staying active during a period that, sometimes, is given to appealing to our love of caloric excess and the more sedentary aspects of life.

The programs and activities at Hope’s recreation centre are up to the challenge and Jody Castle, the manager of Recreation for the Fraser Valley Regional District, reminds residents that there are a multitude of options available for all ages.

In one example of helpful holiday activities, the centre is offering winter break day camps for children five to 12 years old. The activities include swimming, skating, crafts and maybe even sledding.

The program runs 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on every day during the winter break (excluding Christmas and New Year’s Day) and will provide children with a host of activities to keep them safe and active.

“Sometimes we take them off site as well to places like the Extreme Air Park or Wild Play Climbing Centre. It’s a fun opportunity for the kids to get out and do something different,” Castle said.

“We’ll also partner with some local activities like bowling or the Art Machine, so it’s a real mix of fun activities where everybody will experience something they love.”

The camps are also available for every pro-D day taken by the school division.

Of course, no holiday schedule would be complete without a skate with Santa.

That skate takes place on Dec. 9 between 1:30 and 3 p.m. and will give kids the chance to get their picture taken with the big fellow while seated on the Zamboni.

“It doesn’t get much better than that,” Castle said with a smile.

Of course, cookies and hot chocolate will be on hand to round out the experience.

And in case you haven’t had your fill of skating, there will be a free skating celebration of Canada 150 the next day (Dec. 10, from 1:30 to 3 p.m.) and the only cost will be a canned food product that will, in turn, be donated to filling out the community food hampers for the less fortunate in Hope.

Canned-good admission is also good on Dec. 6 and 13 and is good for skating, swimming or fitness activities.

On Dec. 15, the second Wipe Out Night will be hosted at the centre’s pool and the whole family is invited to come out and try their hand at running on the floating runway, swinging from the rope, dodging balls, and generally having an aquatic blast.

“We’ll also have some Christmas crafts going on, and cookie decorating – all sorts of activities for the holidays. We even have a Zumba class starting to help wear off some of those Christmas cookies. There’s tons to do and a lot of fun for every age group,” Castle said.

For full information on program offerings during the holiday season, residents of Hope are invited to call the recreation centre at 604-869-2304.

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