Parks and rec helps keep this community strong

You might enjoy watching Falcon Football games at Brook Park in the fall, ice skating at Burns Field in the winter or taking a run through KLM in the spring.

But summer is when the Hinsdale Parks and Recreation Department shines, so it seems fitting that July is Park and Recreation Month. And Hinsdaleans have plenty to celebrate.

Residents can enjoy 122 acres of dedicated parkland at 18 sites, with opportunities for baseball, football, jogging, ice skating, tennis, pickleball, picnicking, platform tennis, soccer and softball.

The Hinsdale Community Pool — a rare amenity these days in suburban towns — features three pools, sunbathing areas, a bath house with locker rooms and a concession area. The opening of the pool each Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start of summer. In addition to offering open swim, lap swimming and lessons, the pool is home to several special events over the summer. The next is Christmas in July, complete with a float-in movie (“The Santa Clause”) on July 21.

Speaking of special events, Lunch on the Lawn is a staple every summer and welcomed back Jeanie B! and the Jelly Beans on June 14 and Miss Jamie’s Farm yesterday. The series continues with the Magic of Gary Kantor Aug. 2.

Another popular series invites families to watch some of their favorite flicks al fresco. After the float-in movie later this week, “Despicable Me” will be shown Aug. 11.

The parks and rec department is responsible for organizing the annual Fourth of July parade, which was better than ever this year in honor of the village’s 150th anniversary.

Hinsdale parks and rec is joining forces with the Oak Brook Park District to host another special event, the National Night Out Aug. 1, with balloon artists and face painters, touch-a-truck, a bounce house, games and prizes, a DJ spinning tunes, food and more.

Youth sports are huge in Hinsdale, and parks and rec makes sure to offer opportunities for kids to participate in everything from soccer and softball to tennis and taekwondo.

The list of summer camps parks and rec offers (working in conjunction with other organizations and neighboring communities) is impressive, too.

And that just covers three month! The department offers more than 600 programs a year designed to meet the leisure interests of Hinsdale residents.

Hinsdale’s staff is led by supervisor Michael Hayes, with Hilary Poshek serving as recreation supervisor, Maggie South as administrative assistant, Stephanie Scaletta as sales and events manager at The Lodge and Christine Pfau as aquatics coordinator.

But not everyone working to better park facilities and recreational opportunities in town is paid. The park and recreation commission is made up of seven individuals who generously volunteer their time and energy for the cause. Led by Chair Alice Waverly, the group consists of Darren Baker, Chris Boruff, Heather Hester, Steve Keane, Nash Moore and Pat Rooney.

The National Recreation and Park Association lists a variety of benefits to having a great parks and recreation system, from attracting new residents to boosting the economy to promoting physical and mental health. Its theme for this year’s celebration is Where Community Grows.

Join us in congratulating all involved with parks and rec in Hinsdale for helping to make this community strong.