Camp, Activities In Full Swing At Barry Rec
By MIRIAM FINDER ANNENBERG
Journal & Topics Reporter
Summer is in full swing in Rosemont, and that means a variety of activities and events are underway at Barry Recreation Center providing summer fun primarily for the Rosemont residents living adjacent to the recreation center near Allstate Arena.
“Right now we’ve got our summer camp in full swing,” said Recreation Center Director Alex Perez. “It’s been a good first week.”
Barry Recreation Center participates in the Rosemont-wide summer day camp program, so Perez spends his mornings making sure all of the kids are accounted for and getting on the correct buses to where they’re supposed to be going, whether the Margaret J. Lange Park or a field trip.
Day camp runs for seven weeks, after which regular summer programming resumes at Barry Recreation Center. Outside of camp hours, the indoor turf and basketball hoops are crowded with residents, as well as the gym and the indoor turf.
While the Barry Recreation Center playground and splash pad are currently off-limits, Perez said they should be opened within the next couple of weeks. The playground recently received updated equipment, which should be open to Rosemont kids to play on later this summer.
“The new playground is installed. We just have to get the rubber mulch down,” said Perez. “As soon as the mulch is down, the playground with be open.”
He said right now, gravel surrounds the playground, making it unsafe for children to play on.
Equipment in place for the playground project is currently blocking access to the splash pad, but will be removed as soon as the playground is back in use.
A big draw to the Barry Recreation Center this summer is the community garden.
“Every single day as soon as the building opens, you’ll get people going in and out,” Perez said.
Tucked behind the Rec Center, 71 plots of land are carefully tended by community members growing their own produce each day.
Registration for this year’s plots opened the first week of April, and the spaces quickly filled up. The garden opened the second week of April and will remain open through September.
Even those in the community without a plot are welcome to visit the garden as long as they follow the one rule: do not take anyone else’s produce.
New to the garden this year is the an abundance of mint being grown, Perez said. Alongside the mint, he said other plants like peppers, tomatoes and cucumbers are just beginning to grow.