When it comes to high quality entertainment, sports opportunities, crafts, classes, lessons and just about every available opportunity to engage in meaningful activities year-round, look no further than your local parks & recreational organization.
The Frederick County Parks & Recreation organization is a one-stop shop to find something to do for all ages, sizes, shapes, genders, races and as one who has utilized their services many times over many years, we can’t speak highly enough about them.
School Year Childcare and Summer Camps:
When managing the work schedule necessitates there are before-care and after-care programs serving the elementary schools in the area. These are open to all Frederick County Elementary students. The basicREC program provides children with incredible recreational opportunities both before and after school. Children will be able to participate in active games and have the opportunity to participate in arts and crafts, sports, fitness programs, and a virtually endless list of other activities. And when the weather is nice, most activities will take place outside. And one need not sign up for both mornings and afternoons. Either or both are available. And you also can sign up just for the days that you need. Registration opens typically July 1st during the year and you can visit their website or call 540-665-5678.
In the summertime there is Camp basicREC. This camp is a nine week session, on the through Friday excluding holidays, and typically runs 6:30 a.m until 6:00 p.m. campers will participate in fun filled adventures which are based at area schools and playgrounds. The camp is designed to keep your child involved in activities that go on throughout the day every summer is filled with special activities, events, group games, outside play, water play, organized sports and games and so much more. All campers get to have their swimming skills assessed prior to being permitted to swim and the Parks and Recreation Department use color coded wristbands which identify each participant’s skill level for everyone’s safety. Parents get to drop off and pick up their children from their designated school site each day. Morning and afternoon snacks are provided, but participants are always welcome to bring them from home as well. And you need not use all nine weeks! You can pick one or more individual single weeks as you wish or your needs dictate. All of these details are available in their guide books and of course on their website at www.fcprd.net. Don’t forget your sunblock and water!
In terms of the availability of sports in which any and all are able to participate, it would probably be easier to make a list of those they don’t have available then those that they do. Obviously some of these are year-round and others are dependent upon a particular season’s weather.
There is a young riders camp for those interested in horseback riding area campers are introduced to writing, caring, grooming, all that encompasses horseback riding. There is youth archery programs that teach the basics of shooting a compound bow safely and effectively. There is golfing for kids who wish to have an introduction to golf as well as advanced classes thereafter. There is a wrestling camp that teaches and develops wrestling skills with an emphasis on the fundamentals. There is a baseball camp that teaches the basics with individual and group drills involving the mechanics of throwing, hitting, fielding, and baserunning. There are basketball leagues available to both boys and girls aged nine through 18. There is a swim team program for use aged five through 18 via the Shenandoah Valley Swim League; with pools available at both Clearbrook Park and Sherando Park. There are swim lessons and lifeguard training camps; flag football and soccer. That’s not everything, either. We’re just giving you a flavor here.
Activities for the Whole Family
In the summertime there is family movie night which take place at both parks, Clearbrook and Sherando. They even offer what’s called a “film and float” where you can lazily float around the pool while watching the featured movie. There is a Water Safety Fair. There is the international day of friendship there are the Friday night floats at the pools. They even have discounted tickets to Kings Dominion. There are music lessons available for a myriad of instruments, even singing lessons, too! They have open gym times at specified schools at specified times to play pick-up basketball.
Trips and Events for Ages 50+
And for those of us who just want to sneak away for a while, every year, all year round there are opportunities to go on day trips and more all around the region. The Amish Experience is a one-of-a-kind event that takes you inside an authentic Amish homestead; offers an opportunity to take in an homage theater production; partake of a family-style authentic Amish meal and more. The annual Senior Picnic in the Park affords the participant an opportunity to enjoy all that nature has to offer and a wonderful picnic as well. There are daytrips to the Inner Harbor in Baltimore. There are trips to see professional baseball games that include both the Washington Nationals and the Baltimore Orioles. There are opportunities to visit sites, historical monuments, museums, and the fees almost always include pick-ups and drop-offs from a specified safe location, so Parks & Rec even will take over the burden of getting you there and home safely.
Frederick County Parks & Recreation Department regularly puts up their Summer, Fall, Winter, and Spring Guides detailing all of the incredible opportunities for all of us and you can see them here: Frederick County Parks & Recreation Department current publications.
Before we wrap this all up, let’s not forget about the free and unfettered access to all of the parks that are under the Parks & Rec Department’s purview.
Sherando Park: Located at 252 Lakeview Circle in Stephens City, this park is situated on 330 scenic acres and offers a variety of activities and facilities for the whole family to enjoy. The park is located 1.8 miles east of I-81 on Route 277 at Stephen City. Some of the amenities include a nearly 5-acre fishing Lake, lighted ball fields, picnic shelters and tables, hiking trails, a 25-meter outdoor pool, 18-hole disc golf course, soccer fields, volleyball court, playgrounds; bocce, tennis, and basketball courts.
Clearbrook Park: Located at 3300 Martinsburg Pike in Clearbrook, that’s just five miles north of Winchester. The amenities available at the 55 acres that make up Clearbrook Park include a 3-acre lake, lighted ball fields, 3000 feet of paved walking paths, picnic shelters and tables, paddle boats, a playground, a 25-meter outdoor pool, volleyball court, and a vintage red caboose!
Rose Hill Park: Located at 1873 Jones Road in Winchester and one-third of a mile south of the intersection of Cedar Creek Grade and Jones Road, Rose Hill Park affords the visitor the opportunity to enjoy the historic and scenic features of the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley’s Rose Hill Farm. Amenities include a 1.2 mile interpreted walking trail of the 1862 1st Battle of Kernstown, picnic shelter and tables, and restrooms.
Do take advantage of what Frederick County has to offer. It is so much. It’s actually beyond so much. If ever you were to draw a blank on what to do, where to go, what to see and enjoy, you actually could get by for many years by simply partaking of what the Frederick County Parks & Recreation Department has to offer you all year long.