Wheeling Parks and Recreation’s Summer Program Lineup Offers Something for Everyone

It’s that time of year and the Wheeling Parks and Recreation Department is gearing up for another jam-packed season. Summer is the busiest season of the year, Director Rochelle Barry shared, but she is excited about all the special events planned. Activities are geared towards any age group and interest area, from free Family Fun nights at all four local pools to basketball leagues, cooking classes, camps, swim lessons, and even a book club!

When asked what makes Parks and Rec a great place to work, she responded “because every day is something different. We have a lot of fun in the summer getting to interact with all of our participants and summer employees. Yes, it is surprisingly a lot like the tv show!” 

She shared that the new partnerships and first-time activities and events will make this summer even better than years past. “We are excited to be partnering with other people in the community to bring more activities to various neighborhoods,” she added. Parks and Rec will be partnering with the Ohio County Public Library for Splish Splash Story Time and the Schrader Environmental Education Center for an Animal Meet and Greet.  They are also continuing the “Kids in the Kitchen” Series with Melissa Rebholz of Midge’s Kitchen.

The lineup of summer events kicked off this past weekend with the first Wheeling Wizarding Festival. Despite having a chilly start to the day, local Harry Potter fans came out in droves to support this unique event that featured crafts, a costume contest, shopping, food and of course, magic!

  • Photos from the inaugural Wheeling Wizarding Festival at Heritage Port.

Beginning Saturday, June 3 the city pools will be open daily from Noon until 6:oo p.m. at Garden Park in Warwood, Bridge Park on Wheeling Island, 36th Street in South Wheeling and Grandview Pool in Wheeling Heights. Certified lifeguards are always on duty and concessions are available at each pool. Swim lessons will also for those wishing to host a pool party, reservations can be made at www.wheelingrec.com.

Swim classes will be offered for beginners to advanced swimming levels. Pre-school classes will also be offered for children 3-5 years and a parent or guardian must accompany the child into the water.  Each session is offered for two weeks Monday through Friday between 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. They will be held this summer at 36th Street Pool from June 5-June 16 and then Garden Park Pool from July 10- July 21.

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The Wheeling Parks & Recreation Department will again be partnering with the Ohio County Schools Free Summer Meal Program to provide FREE lunches for kids ages 2-18 at Bridge Park Pool on Wheeling Island, Grandview Pool in Wheeling Heights, and Garden Park Pool in Warwood.  This program will begin Monday, June 12.  Lunch will be served from 12:15-1:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.  Lunch will not be served on June 19th, June 20th, or July 4th. The program ends July 28.  

The Wheeling Parks and Rec Department partnered with Midge’s Kitchen to offer a special “Kids in the Kitchen” cooking class series. It will return again this summer.

Also slated for the summer are several camps. Baseball, fast-pitch softball, softball pitching clinic, basketball, cheering, STEM, bowling, soccer and dance camps are all taking place at various locations across the city. Feel free to check out the website and the summer brochure guide for all details, including dates and times.

To view a complete guide to their upcoming activities including the program guide, visit www.wheelingrec.com

Whether you want to beat the heat with some family time at the pool, enjoy a good book club, or share your love of Harry Potter, Wheeling Parks and Recreation has something special for everyone!

• Lindsay Ammirante is a Wheeling native but currently resides in Columbus, Ohio. Born and raised in Elm Grove, she attended St. Vincent de Paul School and then Wheeling Central Catholic High School. She graduated from Bethany College with a bachelor’s degree in Education and is in her 16th year as a Special Education teacher. She also is a full-time student at The Ohio State University, pursuing her PhD in Special Education. Her breaks and most weekends are spent in Wheeling with her nephews, Milano and Sorrento, and the rest of her family and friends.