Tag Archives: sports

Have a family picnic in a #pbcPark!

Picnicking is a great family activity! It’s a great opportunity to get away from the traditional setting of a dinner table and head out to a natural environment.

Benefits of picnicking:
  • Spend time outdoors in a serene setting: being outdoors has been proven to boost moods, reduce stress levels, and improve overall mental wellness. This is a chance for you and your family to be away from the stresses of every day life and enjoy a natural setting. 
  • Bond with family members: because many people live fast-paced lifestyles, there aren’t many opportunities to slow down and spend meaningful time with the people who matter. Play games, get up and walk, or simply sit still and bond over a good meal. 
  • Communicate more effectively: small talk, or even deep conversations, are essential to any good picnic. Head out and learn more about what’s going on with your family members – whether it’s school, work or friends – this is a great opportunity to connect with the people you care about and encourage effective communication skills in kids. 
  • Develop healthy eating habits: instead of buying a pre-made meal to enjoy on a picnic, try preparing a meal for your next picnic trip. Meals prepared at home are typically healthier and more nutritious than pre-made meals. Make sure you include all the basics for a full, healthy meal. 
  • Encourage active lifestyles: having group or family picnics consistently can allow families to form traditions that are passed down from generation to generation; make picnics a habit and turn it into an outing! Bring supplies for games like tug-of-war, soccer or football and encourage the kids to get up before eating to fit in some physical activity during the picnic. 
Where to picnic at #pbcParks:

Picnic areas are available at no charge from sunrise until sunset on a first-come, first-served basis at the following park locations. Visit this page fore a list of all picnicking locations in our parks:  http://discover.pbcgov.org/parks/Amenities/Picnicking.aspx.

Check out municipal parks in or near your town or city for additional picnicking locations.

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Note: please do not feed wild or stray animals. Animals that are fed can become aggressive and harass people. Wild or stray animals can become extremely territorial and bite the hand that feeds them. This can transmit disease. Animals that become used to human contact are susceptible to disease, injury, and random acts of violence.  The survival skills of wild animals are threatened when they lose the ability to forage naturally for food. This can happen when they are fed by hand or when they eat food left out for stray or abandoned pets. Stray animals hunt and kill native wildlife, even when well fed.

#pbcParks Contributes to Economic Development

The economic power of Palm Beach County Parks extends far beyond creating jobs and increasing property values. PBC Parks generates millions of dollars in economic benefit for the county by welcoming crowds of sports fans to a number of ball fields, hosting top local and national performers at amphitheaters, and maintaining popular locations for eco-tourism activities, among other things.

The Office of Public Engagement created this Public Service Announcement to show the multitude of ways PBC Parks contributes to the economic benefit of Palm Beach County. The video includes original artwork and animation created by intern Carlos Duenas, Jr. with a voice over by Public Relations Specialist Bibi Baksh.

We make the quality of life for Palm Beach County residents and visitors better by providing diverse, safe and affordable recreation services, welcoming parks, and enriching social and cultural experiences. We achieve this by promoting wellness, fostering environmental stewardship, contributing economic value, and by improving our community every day for this and future generations.

For more opportunities for healthy, happy living, visit pbcParks.com.

West Jupiter Recreation Center Celebrates Afterschool Programs

In October, Palm Beach County’s West Jupiter Recreation Center hosted their “Lights On Afterschool” event, where students, parents and faculty celebrate the importance of afterschool programs.

WJRC offers an afterschool program for about 40 kids – the kids play different sports, learn about healthy eating, help grow a garden, do arts and crafts and more.

“We just make them a better person, we build their self-esteem,” said WJRC Afterschool Director Rico Adona. Watch this video to see the benefits of the afterschool program at West Jupiter Recreation Center!

Opportunities for exercise for families with children who have a disability

The Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department is committed to enhancing the quality of life for children and adults with disabilities, as well as their families. Find out all the ways families can enjoy exercise with children who have a disability.

Therapeutic Recreation Complex

tr_complexThe Palm Beach County CMAA Therapeutic Recreation Complex is a facility designed for individuals with physical and cognitive disabilities. The facility incorporates a state-of-the-art design with sophisticated adapted equipment that allows everyone to participate in sports and physical activity. People of all ages and abilities can train and compete in sports, participate in fitness programs, and experience a wide array of visual and performing arts programs. Kids and parents can play a variety of sports at the TR complex, including wheelchair basketball, boccia, goalball, wheelchair rugby, and more. Gleneagles Country Club Aquatic Center is also located at the TR Complex in John Prince Park and is open from April thru September; pool lifts are available for individuals with physical disabilities to assist with entering the water.

John Prince Park Wheelchair Coursejohnprince_wheelchaircourse

Palm Beach County parks allow children and families a chance to exercise and live active lifestyles, regardless of age, gender or ability. During a visit to John Prince Park in Lake Worth, you’ll find a nearly half-mile long Wheelchair Course. Participants can travel down the trail, completing a series of exercises at seven stations throughout the course. Each stop includes clearly marked instructions on completing the exercises.

Barrier-free playgrounds & accessible equipment

Three barrier-free playgrounjohnprince_boundlessplayground_2ds located in John Prince, Lake Ida West, and Burt Aaronson South County Regional Parks provide children with and without disabilities a colorful, sensory-rich, accessible experience to run, jump, roll and slide. Newly-installed accessible playground equipment is also available for children to enjoy at Lake Worth West Park in the Central part of the county. Palm Beach County playgrounds are inspected and beautifully-maintained to ensure the safest and most enjoyable experience for families and children.

Fitness zone®, Stations & Exercise Courses

Select Palm Beach County Parks offer Fitness Zone® Exercise Areas, Fitness Stations and johnprince_fitnesszone_2Exercise Courses for all abilities to utilize. At John Prince Park, a Fitness Zone® allows parents and kids the opportunity to use 17 pieces of outdoor, resistance exercise equipment that uses one’s own body weight for strength-training purposes. The equipment is accessible for people of all abilities. Fitness stations with accessible equipment are also available at Westgate Park and Lake Worth West Park. Families can also spend time stretching, bending and balancing at exercise courses in a number of parks located throughout Palm Beach County.

For more information on enjoying our parks with children who have a disability, visit pbcParks.com.

Youth & Teens ‘Move & Groove’ at this year’s #pbcParks Summer Camp!

Palm Beach County’s West Boynton, Westgate & West Jupiter Recreation Facilities, as well as Aquatics, Okeeheelee Nature Center and Golf hosted a number of Summer & Specialty Camp programs to entertain kids during this year’s Summer Break. The kids went on field trips, learned about living healthy lifestyles through physical activity and healthy eating, played a number of games & activities, made tons of friends, and more!

Watch this short video for a recap of this year’s Summer Camp!

Visit pbcParks.com for more information.

Palm Beach County in top 100 family-friendly places to boat and fish

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Lake Okeeheelee in Okeeheelee Park (Courtesy: FWC)

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) and Palm Beach County Parks & Recreation Department scored two local spots on a recent list of the nation’s best fishing and boating locales. Lake Osborne in John Prince Park and Okeeheelee Fish Management Area in Okeeheelee Park made the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation and its Take Me Fishing and Vamos A Pescar campaigns’ 2016 Top 100 Family-Friendly Places to Boat and Fish in the U.S. list. The Top 100 list was released leading up to National Fishing and Boating Week.

Cooperatively managed by the FWC and Palm Beach County, both sites provide great access and good recreational fishing for casual family outings and serious anglers alike. Fishing piers, boat ramps, fish attractors and fish feeders are combined with fish stocking and habitat enhancement to create productive angling that is easy to access. This collaboration allows both agencies to offer better recreational opportunities for their mutual constituents.

“These areas are readily available for residents and visitors alike and are known for producing some great angling opportunities,” said FWC regional Freshwater Fisheries administrator Barron Moody.

Lake Osborne is a 356-acre lake in suburban Lake Worth, with much of the shoreline incorporated in John Prince Park. It is easily accessed via John Prince Park, which offers ample shoreline access, fishing access from piers, and a two-lane paved boat ramp in excellent condition with an additional boat ramp located within the John Prince Lake

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Lake Osborne in John Prince Park (Courtesy: FWC)

Osborne in John Prince ParkPark Campground. The lake provides above-average fishing for largemouth bass, bluegill and redear sunfish, channel catfish and exotic Mayan cichlid. Other species include black
crappie (specks), sunshine bass stocked by the FWC plus peacock bass. Some outstanding largemouth bass fishing can be found there, with fish exceeding 8 pounds.  A brochure with map are at MyFWC.com/fishing, click “Freshwater,” “Sites & Forecasts,” “South Region” and “Lake Osborne.”

Okeeheelee FMA is a 157-acre lake conveniently situated in West Palm Beach. This site offers fishing from the shoreline as well as piers. Okeeheelee FMA contains an abundance of native sunfish and hatchery-raised catfish. The catfish are stocked each year to maintain a steady supply of fish for anglers. FWC fisheries biologist John Cimbaro has been co-managing the lake with Palm Beach County for over 15 years.

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Lake Okeeheelee in Okeeheelee Park (Courtesy: FWC)

“While Okeeheelee bass average less than 14 inches, their abundance here offers plenty of action and fun on light fishing tackle or fly fishing gear,” said Cimbaro. “This is also a perfect spot for someone who is learning to fish for bass to get lots of practice.”

Gasoline motors may not be used on boats at Okeeheelee, making it a peaceful site to fish from kayak or canoe. A brochure with map are at MyFWC.com/fishing, then click on “Freshwater,” “Sites & Forecasts,” “Fish Management Areas” then “Lake Okeeheelee.”

Along with fishing enhancements, both sites offer abundant parking, lakeside trails, playgrounds, picnic pavilions, restrooms and other amenities for a great family trip. Both Okeeheelee and John Prince Park are owned by the Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation Department, and ensuring access to beaches and water bodies are a core service of their department.

The RBFF’s Take Me Fishing and Vamos A Pescar campaigns held a nationwide vote to provide families with a recommended list of locations to visit. Criteria for these top locales included not only the quality of fishing and boating, but proximity to urban areas for easy access and the presence of amenities that contribute to a fun family outing.

Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation, COBWRA partner for Family Fitness FunDay

DSC_0217_EditedOn Sunday, March 6, Palm Beach County residents of all ages came together for a “Sunday Funday” filled with hula hooping, dancing, yoga, rock climbing and other family-friendly activities intended to get everyone active and moving. Seniors, kids and adults took to Palm Beach County’s West Boynton Park and Recreation Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. as part of an initiative to offer inter-generational fitness activities to the West Boynton community.

“In support of our department’s mission, we partnered with the Coalition of Boynton West Residential Associations [COBWRA] with the goal in mind of promoting health and wellness to people of all ages,” said Recreation Programs Supervisor Jackie Lambert.

The Family Fitness FunDay was an intergenerational event that featured an expansive menu of indoor and outdoor activities for all ages. Participants experienced aerobics, karate, yoga, tai chi, zumba and other activities available for all ages. Outdoors, kids enjoyed a bike rodeo, played soccer, got their faces painted, and more! The activities were accessible for people of all ages and abilities.

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Other community partners, including the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, Palm Beach County Fire Rescue, Palm Tran, Delray Medical, and Bethesda Hospital were present.DSC_0190_Edited

“Community partners came together to provide opportunities for physical activity, socialization and provided information about wellness resources and services to assist in identifying and supporting the health, safety, and well-being of all residents,” explained Lambert.

The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office conducted fingerprinting demonstrations and spoke to the public about safety issues. Palm Beach County Fire Rescue allowed children to draw on their fire trucks, simultaneously speaking to people of all ages about the parts of a fire truck and their duties as firefighters.

DSC_0180_Edited“Anytime you put together an event that brings the community together and promotes health and wellness that offers different ways to get moving, it’s beneficial,” said Palm Beach County Mayor Mary Lou Berger, who was present at the event, along with Commissioners Shelley Vana and Steven Abrams.

After giving an introduction speech to attendees, Berger took part in a zumba, hip hop and aerobic class. “It was a great workout,” said Berger.

According to COBWRA representatives, this was the first time COBWRA put on an event of this magnitude for the West Boynton Community. “We wanted to reach a broader community,” explained Valerie Fuldauer, a COBWRA community member. She, along with COBWRA chair Joan Brunswick and Vice Chair Debbie Murphy, say they came to Palm Beach County Parks and Recreation with the idea, and staff helped guide them through the entire process.

“They’ve been fabulous,” said Brunswick.

COBWRA officials say they hope to plan more events like Sunday’s Family Fitness FunDay in the future.