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The original item was published from 4/15/2021 4:52:32 PM to 9/16/2021 12:00:04 AM.

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Parks & Recreation

Posted on: April 15, 2021

[ARCHIVED] Most Parks buildings to reopen on May 3; community centers will be 'wellness hubs'


Most of Hampton's Parks, Recreation and Leisure Services buildings will reopen beginning May 3. These include:

  • The city's four community centers  will open beginning May 3  9 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday through Friday. The Fort Monroe, North Phoebus, Northampton, and West Hampton Community Centers will serve as “wellness hubs,” as recommended by the National Recreation & Park Association, with access to fitness equipment by appointment, plus physically-distanced classes like Zumba, aerobics, stretch & strengthen, and line dancing, among others.  After-school fitness will also be offered from 2 p.m.-6 p.m. students who have been missing structured physical activities during the pandemic.   Hours will expand in June with modified summer camps.
  • The Fort Monroe Pool and Hampton Aquatic Center will be available for lap swims by appointment.  
  • The Senior Center will be open from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday for fitness activities and classes.  Staff will also begin offering a “Virtual Bingo” activity in May for those seniors who remain homebound.  
  • Outdoor volleyball and basketball courts will reopen for “at-your-own-risk” play.
  • Sandy Bottom Nature Park's nature center will reopen, and boat rentals and camping will resume. However, yurt rentals remain closed.

Opening plans for other facilities:

  • The Downtown Hampton Carousel will reopen June 1.
  • The city's neighborhood centers, Y. H. Thomas and Little England, which rely on community non-profits and community boards for much of their programming, will time their openings for summer camps, unless their boards determine otherwise on an as-needed basis. The USDA “Pick-Up & Go” Feeding Program will continue from these centers, as it does from all community centers.  The new Fox Hill Neighborhood Center will open on an as-needed basis right now for meetings and club activities, until such time as a ribbon-cutting is held, likely in late May or June.    
  • Therapeutic Recreation participants can also look forward to a full summer camp beginning June 22 at the Therapeutic Recreation Center on Kecoughtan Road.  
  • The city's public beaches are available to the public now but will officially reopen with lifeguards on Saturday, May 29, for Memorial Day weekend.  Beachgoers at Fort Monroe Coves and at Buckroe will be greeted by beach ambassadors once again, who will remind everyone to social distance, plus assist with ongoing tasks such as keeping our beaches clean and safe, and assisting guests in a concierge capacity for those who may not know their way around.    

Other facilities have already reopened, including: 

  • Although large-scale citywide festivals remain cancelled at this time, outdoor event permit applications for events such as private weddings and graduation celebrations are being accepted now for events with fewer than 100 attendees.  Picnic shelters are available for rental under social-distancing capacities, generally at 25 per shelter, with the exception of the larger River Birch Shelter at Gosnold’s Hope Park which can safely hold up to 100 persons under distancing guidelines.  
  • The James T. Wilson Fishing Pier
  • The Hampton Tennis Center

Outdoor parks, trails and beaches have remained open and accessible during the pandemic.

Hampton has kept its community centers and indoor parks facilities closed for longer than some of our neighboring cities. That is because many of the employees had been shifted to help run the large vaccine clinics at the Hampton Roads Convention Center. 

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