The Estevan play parks are now open for summer fun.
The play parks run activities from July 3 to Aug. 24 this summer.
Each park will have its own theme every week. With this year’s London Olympics, there will be an Olympic-themed week leading up to the international competition. Other weeks range from Dino-Mite, which will look at dinosaurs, to Space Invaders, where children will learn about the planets.
The play park schedule kicks off with Canada Day activities at Hillside Playpark throughout the afternoon, sponsored by the Kinsmen Club.
July 20 will feature the PJ pancake breakfast at Rusty Duce Park, on Aug. 9, Hillside will host a movie night and Aug. 17 will be the Jungle Adventure Carnival at Hillcrest Park. Those are events open to the entire city.
“We have a pretty busy summer,” noted Liisa Kleemola, the summer program co-ordinator.
She said the play parks aren’t just for the mornings, as there are lots of pool games in the afternoon as well as breaks for snacks.
“We’ll try to play a couple of land games as well around the playground and stuff like that, so (we try to) keep them active.”
The play leaders are typically university students, though there is one high school grad this year, and they are all looking into a career in education.
Kleemola was a park leader in the city last year, and is in her fourth year at the University of Lethbridge, studying education. She was two years before completing her studies.
“Two years left and then I’ll be a teacher,” she said. “We only have one high school graduate this year. She graduates on Wednesday and she’ll be starting right on Thursday, so she’s going to be busy.”
The play leaders are all going into education, added Kleemola, or already have been accepted into education.
“We do have a lot of people who are really interested in kids, and really do care about kids. They’re wanting to spend their whole lifetime with them, so they really do care.”
She said these summer postings as play leaders are some of the best experience prospective teachers can receive.
Kleemola came up with the themes for this year based on what went well previously. Some connect more with the children than others, and some are also difficult to find supplies for so the kids can complete their crafts.
“We do try to accommodate to have enough craft supplies for 30 kids,” she said, but added that they don’t turn kids away.
She said for those who want to stay on top of everything at the play parks this summer, they can keep up to date by following the parks on the City of Estevan Facebook page. Kleemola also has a mailing list, so just send your e-mail to playpa...@estevan.ca