Soccer officials needed for record-high participation in youth soccer league

Soccer fever is alive in Central Oregon! The 2017 Bend Unified Recreation Soccer League enrollment is at a record high with more than 2,000 boys and girls participating on 150 teams. Soccer officials are needed to work more than 40 games on Saturdays.

Jointly run by the Bend Park and Recreation District and the Bend FC Timbers, this recreational youth soccer program is made up of boys and girls entering first through eighth grade in the 2017-18 school year.

Games are played on Saturdays Sep. 9 through Oct. 28 at the Pine Nursery and Big Sky sports complexes in Bend.

Soccer officials are an essential part of the program. Although past experience is not required, potential applicants must have a sound knowledge of soccer rules, enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players.

Applicants must be 14 years of age, and be able to complete a criminal background screening and a pre-employment drug test.  Pay rate ranges from $10 to $27 per game, depending on experience and the age level officiated.

Anyone interested in being a soccer official must attend a mandatory training on Monday, Aug. 28, from 7 pm to 7:45 pm at the District Office, 799 SW Columbia St.

Drake Park bank restoration and trail project update to be shared at Aug. 31 meeting

Bend Park and Recreation District is inviting the public to learn more about its Drake Park and Mirror Pond bank restoration and trail improvement project at a public meeting on Thursday, Aug. 31 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the District Office, 799 SW Columbia St.

Attendees at the meeting will learn more about the project, see concept designs and be able to ask questions about the project that stems from a community vision effort in 2015. The District is working towards implementing portions of the vision affecting Drake Park, Pacific Park and the Deschutes River Trail only.

The District has identified a number of safety, environmental and maintenance issues along the edges of the river bank associated with the deteriorating rock (sea) walls and failing or missing trail surface from Drake Park to Pacific Park. As such, this project is focused on realigning the banks of Mirror Pond, reestablishing riparian habitat, repairing failing trail surfaces, building new sections of the Deschutes River Trail and integrating this work into the existing features of these two parks.

The preliminary design phase is expected to be completed in December and will result in more detailed drawings and a cost estimate for Board of Directors’ consideration.

For more information and documents about the project, visit the project page.

BPRD to offer programs, facilities during the eclipse with few park and trail access adjustments

Bend Park & Recreation District will continue to operate its facilities and programs, including many summer camps as childcare options, during the days leading up to and following the Aug. 21 solar eclipse. In addition, most parks and trails will be available for community use, with a couple of access adjustments due to fire concerns.

“As Central Oregon prepares for an influx of visitors in the coming days, we will continue to offer activities that are relied upon including our summer camps and access to Juniper Swim and Fitness Center, Art Station and the Bend Senior Center,” said Matt Mercer, recreation director, Bend Park & Recreation District.

At Juniper Swim and Fitness Center, there will be a special Orbital Fitness Workout Circuit on Monday, Aug. 21, from 9 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. Patrons are encouraged to join the orbit circuit, which will pause to observe the eclipse from 10:15 a.m. to 10:25 a.m. with free eclipse glasses available. During the eclipse, the pool will be cleared of swimmers temporarily for safety. Parking and space may be limited. Walking and biking is encouraged.

The District’s 81 parks and 65 miles of trails will be open and accessible to the community with two exceptions. The parking lot at Tillicum Park/Chase Ranch will be closed to vehicles from Wednesday, Aug. 16 to Tuesday, Aug. 22. In addition, the parking lot at Sawyer Park will be closed to vehicles from Friday, Aug. 18 to Tuesday, Aug. 22. Signs are posted on both parks about the changes.

“Due to fire safety concerns at Tillicum Ranch and Sawyer Park, the parking lots at the two parks will be closed for a few days to prevent vehicle access,” said Michelle Healy, planning and park services director, Bend Park and Recreation District. “We want to do our part to reduce fire danger in these nearby natural areas.”

Park stewards and other park services staff will enforce park rules, including prohibitions on camping, fires and fireworks. For more information about park rules that ensure that Bend’s park system remains beautiful, inviting and safe for the community, visit bendparksandrec.org/parks__trails/park_rules/.

The District recommends the following steps for anyone planning to participate in a recreation program in the next week:

  • Leave early and check ODOT’s TripCheck.com to plan accordingly for traveling to and from home.
  • Cell phone service may be unavailable or sporadic throughout the week. If you need to reach a District facility or program, please contact the main phone numbers. District Office and Art Station: (541) 389-7275, Juniper Swim & Fitness Center: (541 ) 389-7665, Bend Senior Center: (541) 388-1133, and The Pavilion: (541) 389-7588.
  • If attending a scheduled program on Aug. 21, eclipse safety glasses will be provided to each participant.
  • For summer campers, please pack extra food and clothes for your child in the event you are delayed picking them up due to traffic congestion.
  • Any changes or updates will be posted on bendparksandrec.org.

For other information about community wide preparation, visit http://coemergencyinfo.blogspot.com/.

Juniper Swim & Fitness Center to host 4th Annual Kids’ Triathlon on August 27th

Youth ages 4 through 15 years old are invited to swim, bike and run at the Juniper Swim & Fitness Center Kids’ Triathlon, Sunday, August 27th at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center and Juniper Park in northeast Bend. Consisting of all three traditional triathlon activities of swimming, biking and running, the event will offer varying race lengths for different age groups:

  • 4  – 6 years old:     25 yard swim, 1/3 mile bike and 400 yard run
  • 7 – 9 years old:      50 yard swim, 1 mile bike and 800 yard run
  • 10 – 12 years old:  100 yard swim, 1.5 mile bike and 1 mile run
  • 13 – 15 years old: 200 yard swim, 2 mile bike and 1.5 mile run

Non-timed, the triathlon focuses on kids having fun in a safe and encouraging environment. Swimming will be held in the center’s supervised pool and biking and running courses will be in Juniper Park.

Participants are encouraged to pre-register online at bendparksandrec.org, now through Saturday, August 26nd at 12:00 pm, noon. Registrations are limited to 150 participants. If available, day-of-event registration will be open on-site from 7:30 am to 8:30 am. Participant fee is $25 for in-district residents and $30 for out-of-district residents.  Day of registration is $30 and $35. Event t-shirts are included with registration.

The event kicks off with a mandatory all-athlete meeting at 9:00 am followed by the different age categories racing in stages beginning at 9:30 am. The event continues until 12:30 pm and includes vendor booths on site. The triathlon is offered by Bend Park & Recreation District and sponsored by Step And Spine Physical Therapy.

For additional information and to register, visit bendparksandrec.org or call (541) 389-7665.

Fall recreation program registration opens Aug. 7

It’s still summer, but Bend Park & Recreation District is thinking about the cooler days of fall. Registration for fall recreation programs begins Monday, Aug. 7 at 5:30 am.

Fall programs run from Sept. 1 through the end of December and include youth and adult activities, before- and afterschool care, ice skating, fitness, swimming, sports and outdoor recreation.

Registration will be available online at https://register.bendparksandrec.org or in person at the Juniper Swim & Fitness Center, Bend Senior Center and The Pavilion during regular business hours.

Program descriptions and schedules are available for review online beginning today at www.bendparksandrec.org.

For additional information, contact the BRPD Customer Service Team at (541) 389-7275 or visit www.bendparksandrec.org.

Youth Soccer League Enrollment at Record High: Volunteer Soccer Coaches Needed

Soccer fever is alive in Central Oregon! The 2017 Bend Unified Recreation Soccer League enrollment is at an all-time record high with more than 1,950 youth participating on 150 teams. Adult volunteers are needed to coach for numerous teams in the joint program between Bend Park & Recreation District and Bend FC Timbers.

The fall soccer season runs August 21st to October 28th. Program participants are boys and girls going into first through eighth grade in the 2017-18 school year. Practices are held twice weekly with games played on Saturdays. Coaches volunteer approximately five hours per week for the 10-week season.

Volunteer coaches are an essential part of the program, providing support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth. Volunteers must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players.

Training and on-going support is provided. Volunteer coaches must attend a pre-season volunteer orientation/training. Safety is a top priority, so all coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal history background check, as well as online concussion awareness training. Online volunteer application and background check are available at bendparksandrec.org.

For more information, visit bendparksandrec.org or contact Rich Ekman, BPRD Sports Program Coordinator at 541-706-6126, rich@bendparksandrec.org  or Kim Johnson, BPRD Volunteer Coordinator at 541-706-6127, kim@bendparksandrec.org.

 

Residents invited to July 17 Big Sky Park open house

Bend Park and Recreation District is making big changes to Big Sky Park and will host an open house on Monday, July 17, to share information and answer questions. From 5:30 pm to 7 pm, residents and park users are invited to stop by the Big Sky South picnic shelter, 21690 Neff Road, to learn more about the updated master plan for the park.

Big Sky Park is a 96-acre community park located east of Hamby Road and north of Neff Road.  Big Sky Park includes both undeveloped natural areas and developed areas with restroom facilities, paths, playgrounds, sport fields and an off-leash area.

Earlier this year, the District’s Board of Directors approved an updated Master Plan, which primarily focused on activities that could provide a wider range of recreational opportunities for community members. The revised master plan aims to improve safety, increase accessibility and adapt to the changing recreational needs of the community since the first master plan was adopted 14 years ago.

“Big Sky is an important community park in Bend and we want to share information about the changes on the horizon and answer questions about lighting, sound and traffic and how we’re planning to make sure the park is a good neighbor,” said Perry Brooks, landscape architect and project manager.

Highlights include improved traffic flow and parking; construction of an off-road cycling facility including bike skills courses, cyclocross and single-track trails, pump track and more; and a close relationship with Buckingham Elementary school for nature education and a new trail connection.

For more information about the project, visit http://www.bendparksandrec.org/current_projects/park-projects/big-sky-park/.

 

It’s time for Bend’s Old Fashioned July 4th Festivities

Come celebrate our country’s independence at the July 4th Pet Parade and Old Fashioned Festival – both signature Bend Park & Recreation District events.

As Bend’s largest parade, the Pet Parade is sponsored by Bend Pet Express. The parade has been held since 1932 and kicks off another fun-filled July 4th at 10 a.m., downtown. Everyone is welcome to participate and no registration is necessary. The decorating party and lineup begin at 9 a.m. on Wall Street in front of the Bend-La Pine School Education Center at 520 NW Wall St.

Bring your leashed pet (sorry, no rabbits, cats or aggressive dogs) or favorite stuffed animal, plenty of water, pet clean-up bags and your bike, trike or wagon. Bend Park & Recreation will provide decorations, keepsake buttons and popsicles for the kids. Commercial signage, floats, solicitation, motorized vehicles and distribution of anything to spectators are prohibited.

After the parade, the fun continues at Drake Park with the Old Fashioned July 4th Festival sponsored by Zolo. Kids and adults alike can enjoy free old-fashioned games and the Kids & Family Fun Area. There will also be live music featuring favorite local bands, a variety of food booths, a festive photo booth and over 100 artisan booths.

Downtown road closures take place from 9:30 a.m. to noon. Alternative transportation is encouraged and there will be a free bike valet area in Drake Park near the permanent restrooms. Riverside Blvd. will be closed from 6:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. If you need to drive, free weekend parking is available in the parking garage on Lava Street or near Harmon Park.

For the parade route and additional information, visit bendparksandrec.org or call Bend Park & Recreation District at (541) 389-7275.

# # #

July 4th Pet Parade – Downtown Bend

Sponsored by Bend Pet Express

  • A community tradition since the 1930s – now designated as a Oregon Heritage Tradition
  • All ages welcome.
  • Come dressed in costume with your pet or stuffed animal on pulled wagons, bikes or trikes.
  • No registration necessary.
  • Kids receive a keepsake and popsicle.
  • Pets must be leashed – be responsible for and clean up after your pet.
  • No rabbits, cats or aggressive dogs.
  • If you have large animals, please arrive early.
  • Cyclists and equestrians, wear your helmets.
  • Please do not give away animals.
  • No solicitation, commercial floats, motorized vehicles, motorcycles or distribution of anything to spectators.
  • Decorating Party & Parade Line Up: 9 a.m., Parade Begins: 10 a.m.
  • Lineup is on Wall Street in front of the Bend-La Pine Schools Admin Building
  • ADA spectator areas are located on Wall Street in front of the CC McKenzie store and on Lava and Minnesota. Parking is recommended in the City of Bend Parking Garage.
  • Downtown streets along the parade route will close at 9:15 a.m. Please arrive early.

July 4th Old Fashioned Festival – Drake Park

Presented by Zolo – Central Oregon’s KOHD/ABC & KBNZ/CBS

Pancake Breakfast: 8:00 – 11:00 am

Presented by the Sunrise Lions Club

Live Music & Entertainment – Pavilion Main Stage: 11:00 am – 4:00 pm

Hosted by Zolo and presented by Northwest Community Credit Union

  • 11:00 am National Anthem Bella Acappella
  • 11:10 am Declaration of Independence
  • 11:30 am Five Pint Mary Band
  • 1:00 pm Smokey the Bear & Friends
  • 1:15 pm Pie Eating Contest
  • 2:00 pm Nate Botsford Band

Old Fashioned Games: 11:00 am – 3:00 pm

Sponsored by Bend Kiwanis Club

3-Legged Race, Gunny Sack Race, Parachute Play, Hula Hoop Contest, Ball Relays, Water Balloon Toss, Sponge Relay, Watermelon Eating Contest

Kids & Family Fun Area: 11:00 am – 4:00 pm

Sponsored by The Law Offices of Warren John West, P.C.

  • The Fish Fling – presented by Hydro Flask
  • Flush-a-Duck – presented by Brown & Brown Northwest Insurance
  • Helicopter Landing at 11:30 am in Harmon Park – presented by AirLink

And fun and games with The Bend Fire Department, Deschutes National Forest, Central Oregon Prospectors Association, Christian Family Adoption, Tula Movement Arts, The Humane Society of Central Oregon, Wildheart Nature School  & more!

Shevlin Park to expand with addition of 300+ acres of Tree Farm

A partnership involving the Trust for Public Land, The Tree Farm, LLC and Bend Park and Recreation District is providing a unique opportunity to expand Shevlin Park.

Thanks to a federal grant from the U.S. Forest Service Community Forest Program and a generous matching donation from the Tree Farm, LLC, 329 acres of Tree Farm open space adjacent to Shevlin Park will be acquired by Bend Park and Recreation District.

As a community forest, the property will be managed for recreation, improving public access to nature, and expanding connectivity to the National Forest and Shevlin Park with additional bicycle and pedestrian trails.

“With the addition of the Tree Farm open space and Shevlin Park, residents of Bend have nearly 1,000 acres of natural space in close proximity to home for thousands of residents of our community,” said Don Horton, executive director, Bend Park and Recreation District. “Preserving open space is a special benefit for now and generations ahead.”

“Our late father, William E. Miller, acquired this property over 60 years ago and was a careful steward of the land,” said Charley Miller. “It has been our family’s desire to make this beautiful property available to be enjoyed by the community for perpetuity.”

The use and management of the community forest is expected to be generally consistent with Shevlin Park, although The Tree Farm open space comes with deed restrictions that prohibit future residential development, and require on-going wildfire management and some seasonal trail closures for winter mule deer migration.  These innovative provisions will ensure the continued health of our local deer herd while creating a wildfire buffer for Bend.

Trails are already in use and more information is available at http://treefarmbend.com/trail-map/. The District plans to make some modifications and consolidations of some trails to reduce duplication in key areas as part of the acquisition.

“As Bend continues to grow, it takes creative efforts like this one to ensure access to nature close to home that maintains our great quality of life in Central Oregon,” said Nelson Mathews, NW Land Conservation Director for The Trust for Public Land. “We would like to thank the Tree Farm, Bend Park and Recreation District and the Community Forest Program for working together to provide more places to explore, run, hike and bike in Shevlin Park.”

Bend Park and Recreation District (District) collaborated with TPL to apply for a Community Forest Program (CFP) grant from the U.S. Forest Service to acquire The Tree Farm open space. The intent of the CFP is to provide financial assistance to local governments to establish community forests that provide continuing and accessible community benefits.

The District and TPL were successful in the grant application, and the District will use $156,125 to purchase the property (50% of the total $312,250 fair market value of the property). The required one-to-one grant match is being provided through a donation of the remaining property value from the Tree Farm LLC.  The District expects to close on the property this summer.

Teen volunteers needed for Days of Play and youth recreation programs

Summer is here and Bend Park & Recreation District still has many opportunities for teens to get involved as volunteers with youth recreation programs. Volunteers are especially needed to support the District’s free summer program called Days of Play, offered for eight weeks at various parks throughout Bend.

“Teen volunteers are fantastic support and role models with this program. The young participants really connect with the teens,” said Kim Johnson, community engagement supervisor. “The volunteers have the opportunity to gain some experience and learn job related skills, while giving back to the community and having a lot of fun playing outside in the parks.”

Volunteers are also needed with other youth programs including classes at the Art Station and with youth fitness programs at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center.

Age requirement, time commitment, training and schedule vary by program. Opportunities are currently available for volunteers age 14 and over.

Information about volunteering and details about current opportunities is available at www.bendparksandrec.org/volunteers/teens/.

Or contact Kim Johnson at 541-706-6127 or kim@bendparksandrec.org.

Registration deadline for Bend Unified Recreational Soccer League is June 5

School isn’t even out yet, but it is time to plan now for a busy youth fall soccer season. The deadline to register for the 2017 Bend Unified Recreational Soccer League (BURSL) fall season is Monday, June 5.

Jointly run by the Bend Park and Recreation District and the Bend FC Timbers, the program is open to all boys and girls in Central Oregon entering first through eighth grade in the 2017-18 school year. Last year, a record number of 1,870 kids played on 140 teams.

“Fall soccer is our most popular youth sport,” said Rich Ekman, BPRD sports coordinator. “We’re anticipating high registration numbers again this year, so parents should sign up now to ensure their child gets on a team.”

Teams are coached by trained volunteer coaches. Grouped by school and divided by grade, teams practice twice-a-week and play games on Saturdays. The league runs Aug. 21 through Oct. 28. Instruction, number of players on teams and game field sizes are age-appropriate and grow incrementally. All players receive their own uniform including jersey, shorts and socks.

For more information, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or contact Rich Ekman, BPRD sports coordinator at (541) 706-6126, rich@bendparksandrec.org, or Jen Davin, Bend FC Timbers at (970) 390-9932.

Shevlin Park partially reopens today

The prescribed fire of 48 acres at Shevlin Park on May 25 was a success partnership between Bend Park and Recreation District, Deschutes National Forest and City of Bend Fire Department.

Today, May 26, Shevlin Park is reopened north of Shevlin Park Road.  The park south of Shevlin Park Road remains closed as crews continue to monitor for hot spots.

Parking lot gates, signage and District employees are in place to inform visitors about the status.

Shevlin Park prescribed fire scheduled for May 25; park closed for the day

A 48-acre prescribed fire is scheduled for Shevlin Park on Thursday, May 25, and the park will be closed for the day.

To maintain and restore forest health and reduce the potential negative effects of a severe wildfire in Shevlin Park, Bend Park and Recreation District is reintroducing prescribed fire as part of its vegetation management plan for the park.

The prescribed fire area is located in Shevlin Park on the south side of Shevlin Park Road.  The area is immediately south of Aspen Meadow and the parking lot and will extend to the east near the Tumalo Creek Trail and west near the old railroad grade. The southern boundary will be near the covered bridge.

Signage is in place to inform park visitors about the fire and park closure. Staff will also be on-site at key trailheads to alert anyone about the fire and closure.

The Deschutes National Forest will lead the burn with support and assistance from the District’s Natural Resources team.

The prescribed fire should be completed in a day or two. Once it is safe to reopen the park, signage will be removed and areas will be available for recreation.

During the active burning period nearby residents and park visitors will see and smell smoke. People are encouraged to keep their doors and windows closed during the burning and the evening following the burning to reduce impacts from smoke.

Most smoke should move out of the area within the day though there may be some smoldering on the following day or two.

Firefighters will monitor the area for several days following the burn.

Learn to Fish event scheduled for June 3

Bend Park and Recreation District invites young anglers to learn how to fish with a free event on Saturday, June 3, at Pine Nursery Park.

From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife staff and volunteers will be on hand to provide instruction to kids 17 and under. The event is part of ODFW’s state-wide Free Fishing Weekend.

Loner rods, reels and tackle will be available. The pond will be stocked with rainbow trout before the event. All state angling regulations apply.

Park and Recreation District fishing programs are designed to get both youth and adults into the swing of baiting, casting and angling for this season’s perfect catch.

In addition to scheduled activities and programs, the District features fishing ponds at Pine Nursery and Shevlin parks that are stocked by Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife. Current regulations at both ponds allow for a limit of two fish per day, eight inch minimum length.

  • Shevlin Park pond features rainbow trout and is open to youth, 17 years and under.
  • At Pine Nursery Park, the pond is open to all ages and stocked with rainbow trout, blue gills and bass.

For Deschutes River fishing, access is available at several parks including Drake, Farewell Bend, First Street Rapids, Miller’s Landing, Pacific, Pioneer, Riverbend and Sawyer parks.

All state angling licenses and regulations apply at all locations. Information on fishing and stocking in the region is available at ODFW’s website.

For additional information on BPRD fishing programs, contact Greg Brady, sports coordinator at (541) 706-6124.

Maintenance work to temporarily close parking lot at dog off-leash area at Riverbend Park

Bend Park and Recreation District is doing some maintenance work at the gravel parking lot at the dog off-leash area at Riverbend Park and will have two temporary closures in the coming weeks due to the work.

The parking lot at the dog off-leash area at Riverbend Park will be closed on May 18 and May 19 for work to rip, grade and compact the gravel parking area. This work will begin in the early morning on May 18 and will be completed by mid-afternoon on May 19. During the closure, users of the dog off-leash area are asked to park at the paved parking lot for Riverbend Park and the District Office at 799 SW Columbia St.

The work and closure will not impact the gravel parking lot or use for May 20, which is the date of the Pole Pedal Paddle.

The parking lot at the off-leash dog area at Riverbend Park will also be closed on May 23 to allow for dust abatement material to be applied to the gravel lot.

Signage and barriers will be place to inform park users about the parking lot closure.

The District appreciates patron patience with the closure that is intended to improve the parking area for summer use.

 

Summer is on the way: JSFC pool cover to be removed

Warmer weather must be around the corner because the pool cover at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center is coming off!

Bend Park and Recreation District is making the seasonal change to the 50-meter pool beginning Monday, May 15. The work is expected to be completed by the end of the week.

The cover is more than 50,000 sq. ft. of tent material and requires six to eight District employees to complete the task. The cover is annually installed in October and removed in May to allow swimmers to enjoy the summer season fully.

“It is a spectacular undertaking and an ‘all-hands’ week for us. It’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it every summer to see all the smiles in the pool and knowing the impact that Bend Park and Rec has here in the community,” said Shawn Clark, facilities specialist who has been installing and removing the tent panels since 2000. “It is not really summer here until the pool cover comes off.”

The outdoor activity pool will open, weather permitting, on weekends only starting Memorial Day weekend.

Visit http://www.bendparksandrec.org/juniper_swim__fitness/ for details and schedules.

Community invited to May 2 information session about Shevlin Park prescribed fire

In May, a 48-acre prescribed fire is planned for Shevlin Park and the community is invited to learn more at an information session on Tuesday, May 2, at 6 p.m. at Aspen Hall, 18920 NW Shevlin Park Rd.

To maintain and restore forest health and reduce the potential negative effects of a severe wildfire in Shevlin Park, Bend Park and Recreation District is reintroducing prescribed fire as part of its vegetation management plan for the park. The May 2 information session will include brief presentations and opportunities for attendees to ask questions about the timing, benefits, safety measures and community impacts of the prescribed fire.

The District is working closely with the Deschutes National Forest and Project Wildfire on details related to the burn, and representatives from the organizations will be in attendance at the May 2 session.

The prescribed fire area is located in Shevlin Park on the south side of Shevlin Park Road.  The area is immediately south of Aspen Meadow and the parking lot and will extend to the east near the Tumalo Creek Trail and west near the old railroad grade. The southern boundary will be near the covered bridge.  Signage is in place to inform park visitors about the current preparations for the burn.

At Shevlin Park, visitors may have observed employees conducting tree thinning, understory brush mowing and slash pile burning in recent months to help reduce hazardous fuel loads and prepare for the upcoming prescribed fire efforts.

The prescribed fire is tentatively planned for May 15-19, May 25 or May 30-June 1. These dates are subject to weather conditions, final preparations for the site and approval of the Deschutes National Forest. As planned, the prescribed fire should be completed in a day or two. Once it is safe to reopen the park, signage will be removed and areas will be available for recreation.

“Re-introducing fire to Shevlin Park will provide numerous benefits to the park’s natural resources,” said Jeff Amaral, natural resources manager for Bend Park and Recreation District. “Historically, fire was the main disturbance that created and maintained Shevlin Park’s vegetation species composition and densities.”

During the active burning period nearby residents and park visitors will see and smell smoke. People are encouraged to keep their doors and windows closed during the burning and the evening following the burning to reduce impacts from smoke. Most smoke should move out of the area within the day though there may be some smoldering on the following day or two. Firefighters will monitor the area for several days following the burn.

 

Teens needed to help with summer youth programs

Bend Park & Recreation District has many opportunities for teens to volunteer with youth recreation, fitness, swimming and art programs this summer.

Volunteers  help from late June through the end of August with District opportunities including the Junior Lifeguard and Swim Instructor Aide programs at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center, day camps, preschool, science, art, craft, theater, cooking, fitness, nature and adventure activities for children. New this summer are opportunities supporting programs at the Art Station.

“Teen volunteers provide valuable support with program activities while learning job skills, gaining experience working with younger children, and having fun,” said Kim Johnson, volunteer coordinator. “Teens need to enjoy working with youth, be willing to take initiative, make a commitment and be able to create a positive, encouraging environment for all participants.”

Volunteers and job seekers are also invited to learn more about current volunteer and employment opportunities at open houses on Wednesday, April 26, and Wednesday, May 10, from noon to 3 p.m. at the District Office, 799 SW Columbia St.

Age requirement, time commitment, training and schedule vary by program. Minimum age for teen volunteers is 12 years old.

Information about volunteering, the list of current opportunities and volunteer application form are available at www.bendparksandrec.org; click on the “volunteer” tab. A criminal history background check is processed for volunteers age 18 and over.

For more information, contact Kim Johnson, volunteer coordinator, at (541) 706-6127 or kim@bendparksandrec.org.

Youth Lacrosse referees needed

Bend Park and Recreation District is looking for referees to officiate games for the 2017 Boys Lacrosse League.

“With 700 kids participating in the league this year, which is a new record for the growing sport, the need for referees to officiate games is as big as ever,” said Rich Ekman, sports program coordinator.

Potential applicants must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging environment. Although prior referee experience is not required, all referees must have lacrosse knowledge, and pass a pre-employment drug screen and criminal background check.  Applicants must be at least 14 years of age.

Pay rate is $15 to $20 per game depending on grade level officiating.   Games are played at the Big Sky Sports Complex at 4:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Monday thru Friday, April 26 to June 2.    

Anyone interested must attend a mandatory meeting scheduled for Wednesday, April 19 at 7 p.m. at the Park and Recreation District Office, 799 SW Columbia St.

For more information contact Rich Ekman, Sports Program Coordinator at 541-706-6126, rich@bendparksandrec.org

Patrons asked to avoid parks and trails during high wind conditions

During high wind conditions, the Bend Park and Recreation District urges community members to avoid parks and trails where trees may create hazards. Today, April 7, we have trees down at Drake, Pioneer and Shevlin parks as well as others. These parks and others with trees should be avoided until weather conditions change.

The District’s Natural Resources crew is establishing perimeters with caution tape around known downed trees; however, other trees and large limbs may be affected by the winds forecast throughout the day.

The current conditions create a safety hazard for employees and patrons, so please avoid the areas. District employees will begin to assess damage and clean up the affected parks and trails as soon as possible following the current wind storm.

Input requested about future Community Park in Southeast Bend

Bend’s Southeast area is getting a much-needed community park and Bend Park and Recreation District is asking for input.

As part of the 2012 District bond measure, land was purchased for a future community park in the Southeast area. The 37-acre parcel is on the west side of 15th Street and south of Golden Gate Place/future Murphy Road alignment.

As planning and programming analysis is underway, public input is requested via an electronic questionnaire. The questionnaire is open now and input will be accepted until April 17. Access the questionnaire here. The survey was previously open in January and February with input collected from nearly 500 neighbors of the area.

“Because of the community-wide use expected for the new park, the survey is being reopened to encourage broader input from residents throughout Bend,” said Ian Isaacson, landscape designer, Bend Park and Recreation District.

“This is an exciting opportunity to consider broad possibilities for this important park, so we ask residents to please spare a few minutes to answer a handful of questions for us,” he added.

For more information about the SE Community Park project, visit http://www.bendparksandrec.org/current_projects/park-projects/southeast-bend-parks/.

Recreational softball organizational meetings April 5

The Bend Park and Recreation District’s most popular adult team sport is back and a mandatory meeting is coming up for team representatives.

The District will hold team organizational meetings for Recreational Softball Leagues (no umpires) on Wednesday, April 5, at the District Office, 799 SW Columbia St.  The coed recreational league meeting will be at 6 p.m. and the men’s recreational league meeting will be at 6:45 p.m.

Any team interested in joining the league must have a representative present at the April 5 meeting.  Team registration order and fee deadlines will be determined at the meeting.

Adult recreation softball teams will play a 12-game schedule between May 8 and Aug. 4.  All games will be played on weekday evenings at the Pine Nursery Sports Complex and the Skyline Sports Complex. The registration fee is $360/team.

The District estimates there will be approximately 1,200 participants on 60 teams in the leagues.

For more information contact Rich Ekman, Sport Program Coordinator at (541) 706-6126, rich@bendparksandrec.org

Bend Whitewater Park reopens March 18

The Bend Park and Recreation District will reopen the Bend Whitewater Park on Saturday, March 18, following winter work modifications to improve performance in the whitewater and passageway channels.

The boom that was temporarily in place during construction activity is being removed today.

“The winter modifications were completed with only minimal disruptions due to the winter weather conditions,” said Brian Hudspeth, development manager for the District. “The feedback about the wave features and the passageway channel is favorable and we look forward to the upcoming river recreation season.”

Winter work modifications in the whitewater channel included raising the pool elevations above the lower two features by raising the shoulders of the drops, and shallowing the pool below the upper most wave by installing a concrete “floor” below the wave to help stabilize the wave.

Work in the passageway channel focused on installing boulders to direct water through the center of the channel to decrease the chance of floaters dropping over the shoulders and flipping.

“The work completed this winter accomplished the goals we intended, including a refinement of some features  in the passageway channel that were enjoyed by more than 100,000 river users last summer,” said Michelle Healy, director of Planning and Park Services for the District. “Even with the work done, river users need to recognize the dynamic conditions in a natural river and should prepare for the experience.”

Funding for the winter work came from the project’s original funding allocation, remaining bond funds from the Farewell Bend Bridge project, and property tax revenue.

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Volunteer lacrosse coaches needed

Bend Park and Recreation District is seeking adult volunteers to coach youth lacrosse for the 2017 Youth Lacrosse League.  Program participants are boys and girls in first through eighth grades.

Program enrollment is at an all-time record high with more than 670 youth participating. Several teams are in need of volunteer coaches.

The lacrosse season is April 3 to June 2. Coaches volunteer approximately five hours per week for the nine-week season. Teams practice and play games twice weekly in the afternoons and evenings.

Lacrosse experience is preferred but not required. Training and on-going support is provided to volunteer coaches.

“Volunteers must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players,” said Rich Ekman, sports program coordinator. “Volunteer coaches are an essential part of the program, providing support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth.”

All volunteer adult coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal background check, as well as online concussion awareness training.

The online volunteer application and background check available at http://www.bendparksandrec.org/volunteers/volunteer-application/.

Pre-season coach training is Saturday, March 18 from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the District Office, 799 SW Columbia St.

District moving forward with design of bank repairs and trail improvements along Drake Park at Mirror Pond

Public meeting on March 8 to learn more about the project

Sometimes a small step is needed to put bigger change into motion, and the Bend Park and Recreation District is doing that with a project along Drake Park at Mirror Pond.

The District is moving ahead with designs for realigning the river-right banks of Mirror Pond from the Galveston St Bridge to Pacific Park, reestablishing riparian habitat and repairing failing trail surfaces. The project will also build new sections of the Deschutes River Trail and integrate this work into the existing features of Drake and Pacific parks.

As part of the design process, the first public meeting is scheduled for March 8, from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., in the Community Room at the District Offices, 799 SW Columbia Street. Members of the community are invited to learn more about the project and ask questions.

For several years, the District, the City of Bend and others worked together to find a common community vision to address sediment accumulation, water quality and environmental issues in Mirror Pond.  This process led the District Board of Directors and the Bend City Council to adopt a community vision in 2015.

In recent months, the District has decided to move forward with implementing portions of the vision affecting Drake Park and the Deschutes River Trail from Drake Park to Pacific Park.

“This area along the river at Mirror Pond has significant historical and recreational significance to the community and the current project aligns with the community vision agreed upon by the Bend City Council and District Board,” said Don Horton, executive director. “This project won’t resolve all issues related to Mirror Pond, but it is a great start.”

The bank repair and riparian habitat improvements project will not consider downtown redevelopment of parking lots, address sediment removal in the pond or the sources of those materials, or consider river-left locations including Harmon or Brooks parks or private properties.

“This project requires a more detailed design effort to address existing safety, accessibility, environmental and maintenance issues,” added Horton.

In September 2016, the District enlisted help from GreenWorks, PC for initial design development on a project to address:

  • Methods for bank realignment and restoration;
  • Identification of permitting requirements;
  • Mitigation of safety issues;
  • Detailed cost estimates; and
  • Potential project phasing and schedules.

The March 8 public meeting and other outreach with groups and individuals in the community will provide input into the design process. Neighboring landowners, the environmental community and other stakeholders will be involved as more detailed design plans are developed.

The initial design phase is expected to take eight months. Following design, additional planning will be needed to determine a funding strategy and timeline for development.

For more information, visit the Mirror Pond project webpage at: http://www.bendparksandrec.org/current_projects/mirror-pond-project/.

Youth Lacrosse registration deadline is March 2

Local youth are invited to participate in the Bend Park and Recreation District’s Youth Lacrosse League. The deadline to register is Thursday, March 2. The league is open to boys and girls in first grade through eighth grade and runs from April 3 to June 2. Registration is available at www.bendparksandrec.org or at District facilities.

The league promotes physical fitness and teaches participants sportsmanship lessons about teamwork and fair play as well as basic lacrosse fundamentals and game play. Teams practice twice a week and play an eight-game schedule.

The registration fee is $78 for in-district residents and $94 for those that live outside the District boundaries.  Financial assistance is available for registration and equipment needs.

Helmets (for boys), goggles (for girls), sticks, mouth guards and game jerseys are provided. Participants in the boys’ league need to provide their own gloves, shoulder pads and elbow pads.

The league also offers opportunities for adults as volunteer coaches. Coaches provide support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth. All volunteer coaches must complete an application, background check, take a concussion training course, enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players.

For more information contact Rich Ekman, Sports Program Coordinator at (541) 706-6126 or rich@bendparksandrec.org.

Community input welcomed as planning for parks and recreation begins

Bend Park and Recreation District is planning the next 10 years of parks and trails in Bend, and is asking for help from the community.

This important project will be the roadmap for the next 10 years of new parks, extended trails and new places to workout, play and socialize in Bend.

The plan will help the District prioritize future facility and program investments, and has been vital in past versions to move forward several projects including the Deschutes River Trail, river corridor parks and Pine Nursery Park.

“District residents are a great resource for ideas and knowledge about the community and this input is essential to help us,” said Michelle Healy, Planning and Park Services director.  “This year, community members will see surveys, presentations, pop-up activities and workshops offered around Bend as the planning team gathers information and analyzes the community’s needs.”

Interactive map survey

First up is an interactive community survey that pairs map technology with a brief questionnaire. Participants are asked to drag and drop pins onto areas of a map of Bend where they currently use parks, trails and other places for fun, exercise, classes, etc. and where they would like to see additional services. Other questions seek information about transportation modes, values of natural resource preservation and barriers that pose challenges to use existing parks, trails and recreation facilities.

All survey participants will be entered into a drawing to win a $200 gift card for any District activity or program. The survey is open now through the end of March.

The mobile-friendly interactive community survey is an additional tool for public involvement since the last comprehensive plan update in 2012. The District created its first comprehensive plan in 1980, which was subsequently reviewed and revised in 1986, 1995, 1998, 2001, 2005 and 2012.

Community Workshop

Community members have another opportunity to contribute input and discuss the future of parks and recreation with planners and designers at a community open house. The session, “Your Future, Your Parks, Your Play” is at 5:30 p.m., March 1, at the District Office, 799 SW Columbia St.

Additional public meetings will be scheduled throughout the 18-month process to create the plan, and District planners will provide updates at neighborhood association meetings this winter, spring and summer.

Pop-up Events

To reach a broad base of the community, the District will engage in conversations and ask questions of residents in unexpected places and events. Opportunities such as art walks, seasonal fests and other events, locations and activities that bring the community together will be explored starting this winter and continuing through fall.

“Meeting residents where they are already gathered together to celebrate our community creates special opportunities to reach beyond our regular park and facility users and we’re excited,” Healy said. “This is a new element of public involvement and will complement the many other ways to share input with us.”

Online comments and mailing list

For more information about the Comprehensive Plan, including how to submit online comments and be included on a mailing list for project updates, visit http://www.bendparksandrec.org/current_projects/bprd-comprehensive-plan/.

Parks and Recreation projects underway on the Eastside

As the community continues to grow rapidly, Bend’s Eastside is getting a new community park and updates to popular and well-used neighborhood parks and facilities.

Bend Park and Recreation District is holding open house public meetings in January and February to share information about the projects and to get input.

“Eastside residents are going to see big changes in the parks, open spaces and recreation facilities near their homes in the coming years and we welcome all input as we move forward on several important projects,” said Michelle Healy, Planning and Park Services director. “Hearing directly from members of the community is the most important phase of the planning process.”

SE Community Park

As part of the 2012 District bond measure, land was purchased for a future community park in the Southeast area. According to Healy, the District’s goal is to ensure all residents receive equitable service and the southeast Bend area needs additional community parks spaces.

The 37-acre parcel purchased by the District will be a community park on the west side of 15th Street and south of Golden Gate Place/future Murphy Road alignment. As planning and design begins, public input is requested via an electronic questionnaire. The questionnaire is open now and input will be accepted through mid-February. Access the questionnaire here.

“This is an exciting opportunity to consider broad possibilities for this important park, so we ask residents to please spare a few minutes to answer a handful of questions for us,” said Healy.

Residents can also learn more about the project at a public open house from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 15 at the District Office, community room, 799 SW Columbia St.

Larkspur Center

Larkspur Center is the working name of the expansion project at the Bend Senior Center. Designed to be a multi-generational recreation facility with a focus on serving older adults, Larkspur Center will provide fitness, aquatics, learning and enrichment activities for the community.

The project that will quadruple the size of the facility is currently in design and the master plan will be considered by the Board of Directors in February.

The master plan design has been informed by broad public input in the past several years.  In 2011, the District convened a Vision and Planning Committee and followed up in 2013 with a Master Plan based on the recommendations. Limited modifications were made to the Bend Senior Center in 2015 as precursor to this larger-scale project.

District staff will provide information and answer questions about the expansion project at a public meeting from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 31 at Bend Senior Center, 1600 SW Reed Market Rd.

Juniper Park

Juniper Park, a 24-acre park adjacent to the Juniper Swim and Fitness Center, will get an update for improved accessibility within existing parking areas, replacement and upgrades of park features. The project will be reviewed by the Board of Directors at the Feb. 7 meeting with design and construction beginning later this year pending approval.

Others

Other Eastside park projects underway include construction of Rockridge Park, Eagle Park, and Stone Creek Park, and an updated master plan for Big Sky Park. Funding for these new parks and improvements is from system development charges (SDCs).  SDCs are paid when new homes are built to help fund the acquisition and development of new parks or park expansions to keep pace with population growth.

In addition to current park projects, the District purchased 1.5 acres from Dr. and Mrs. Litchfield on Bear Creek Road on Jan 5. The land will provide important park space adjacent to newly developing neighborhoods comprised of a mix of single and multi-family dwelling units.

The Litchfields approached the District last year about the possibility of selling a portion of their property which is within an area of Bend where the District has sought to increase park space for residents. A final timeline for park development has yet to be established, but development is tentatively expected within the next three years.

School-based programs and sports cancellations

Due to the winter storm and recent roof collapse at Highland Elementary School, Bend-La Pine Schools has closed all schools from today, Thursday, January 12 through Monday, January 16.

Therefore, all Bend Park and Recreation District programs held at Bend schools are cancelled for today, Thursday, January 12 through Monday, January 16.

Cancelled programs include KIDS INC, RecZone, sports activities and youth activities.

In addition, BPRD school-based programs scheduled for Tuesday, January 17 through Friday, January 20 are currently pending cancellation.

Program registrants are being contacted directly about the cancellations and are advised to look for further updates for next week’s programs.

Juniper Swim & Fitness Center, The Pavilion, The Art Station and the Bend Senior Center, the District’s recreation facilities, are all operating normal hours but may have limited activities. Patrons are encouraged to check facility class schedules prior to leaving to attend a class.

For further updates and cancellations, please regularly check the District’s website at www.bendparksandrec.org.

District closing early due to storm, delayed opening tomorrow

Due to the winter storm, Bend Park and Recreation District is closing all facilities at 1 p.m. and has cancelled all afternoon and evening programs for today, Jan. 10.

Juniper Swim & Fitness Center, The Pavilion and Bend Senior Center are closing early, as well as the District Office and Park Services facility. Program registrants have been contacted directly about the cancellations.

The District strongly encourages community members to avoid travel if possible during the storm.

The District will open the Juniper Swim & Fitness Center, The Pavilion and the Bend Senior Center at 9 a.m. on Jan. 11.

The delayed opening times will allow extra time for streets and parking lots to be cleared of snow accumulation so that staff and patrons can access the facilities safely.

For further updates and cancellations, community members are advised to check the District’s Winter Storm Update page.

 

Bend Park & Recreation District cancels public meeting scheduled for tonight

Due to the winter storm, Bend Park and Recreation District is cancelling the public meeting about the Larkspur Center expansion project at the Bend Senior Center scheduled for today, Jan. 4, at 6 p.m. The meeting will be rescheduled in the coming weeks.

Patrons are advised to check the District’s website at www.bendparksandrec.org for the most up-to-date information about classes, programs and facility hours when the area experiences inclement weather.

 

Bend Senior Center closing early due to storm

Bend, Ore. – (Dec. 15, 2016) – Due to the winter storm, Bend Park and Recreation District is closing the Bend Senior Center early at 4:00 p.m. and has cancelled all afternoon programs for  today, December 15.

Other District facilities including Juniper Swim & Fitness Center and The Pavilion remain open regular hours although swim lessons and skate lessons have been cancelled for the day. Registrants have been contacted directly.

For further updates and cancellations, patrons are advised to check the District’s website at www.bendparksandrec.org.

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Delayed openings at Bend Park and Recreation District facilities on Dec. 15

Bend, Ore. – (Dec. 14, 2016) – The Bend Park and Recreation District will open the Juniper Swim and Fitness Center and the Bend Senior Center at 8 a.m. on Dec. 15. The Pavilion will open at 8:30 a.m.

The delayed opening times will allow extra time for streets and parking lots to be cleared of snow accumulation so that staff and patrons can access the facilities safely.

Patrons are advised to check the District’s website at www.bendparksandrec.org for the latest information and schedules.

Bend Parks and Recreation District closing all facilities due to storm; all programs cancelled

Bend, Ore. – (Dec. 14, 2016) – Due to the winter storm, Bend Park and Recreation District is closing all facilities early and has cancelled all programs for  today, December 14.

 

Facility closures are as follows:

– Juniper Swim & Fitness Center – closing at 4:00 pm

– Bend Senior Center – closing at 4:00 pm

– The Pavilion – closing at 4:00 pm

– District Office – closing at 2:00 pm

 

Patrons are advised to check the District’s website at www.bendparksandrec.org for further updates as the storm progresses.

The Pavilion to celebrate winter’s arrival and the New Year

The holidays are getting a bit more festive at The Pavilion with special events on Winter Solstice and New Year’s Eve.

Bend Park and Recreation District’s ice rink will celebrate the shortest day of the year, Dec. 21, with a Winter Solstice Celebration from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. With twinkling lights to welcome winter’s delights, ice skaters will enjoy treats and a special $6 admission price including skate rental. Lighting is being provided by Holiday Help Christmas Lighting, and snowflake decorations are being created by Kids Inc. participants in after-school programs throughout Bend.

To glow in the New Year, The Pavilion will host a New Year’s Eve skating party on Dec. 31. From 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. attendees are encouraged to dress in neon for an evening of ice skating, warming up by the fire, and capturing memories at a special neon glow photo booth. A complimentary glow bracelet or necklace will be provided with admission. Regular open skate admission rates apply.

In addition to the December special events, holiday skate will be offered from Dec. 19 to Dec. 31 with extended open skate sessions, family skate, parent-tot skate and flex skate, which offers opportunities for a variety of activities from freestyle and fitness skating to hosting large school groups.

Schedules are available online at http://www.bendparksandrec.org/the-pavilion/schedules/.

For community members who prefer to watch others on the ice, there are spectator opportunities during adult hockey games on Monday-Thursday evenings or adult curling on Sunday late afternoons and evenings now through Dec. 18.

A second session of ice skating and sports programs, offered from January to April, will open for registration beginning on Dec. 12.

Winter work begins at the Bend Whitewater Park

The Bend Park and Recreation District will proceed with winter work modifications to improve performance in the whitewater and passageway channels at the Bend Whitewater Park.

Beginning Monday, Dec. 5, river access will be closed at 8 a.m. due to construction activity.

Winter work will include modifications in the whitewater channel to improve wave features and safety within the whitewater channel.  Work will include:

  • Raising the pool elevations above the lower two features by raising the shoulders of the drops,
  • Grouting in the shoulders to eliminate entrapment hazards, and
  • Shallowing the pool below the upper most wave by installing a concrete “floor” below the wave to help stabilize the wave.

Work in the passageway channel will help direct water through the center of the channel by installing boulders to decrease the risk of dropping over the shoulders and flipping floaters, and inspect for entrapment hazards.

In an upstream area of the river, a floating buoy will be installed near the portage area to allow for additional river signage and to protect the riparian area on river-left.

The District’s Board of Directors approved the work to be completed by Hamilton Construction Company. Funding comes from the project’s original funding allocation, remaining bond funds from the Farewell Bend Bridge project, and property tax revenue.

Volunteer basketball coaches needed

Bend, Ore. – (Nov. 21, 2016) — Bend Park and Recreation District is seeking adult volunteers to coach youth basketball for the 2017 Youth Basketball League.  Program participants are boys and girls in third, fourth and fifth grades.

The basketball season is Jan. 3 to March 4. Coaches volunteer approximately five hours per week for the 10-week season. Practices are held on two weekday evenings per week with games played on Saturdays.

Basketball experience is preferred but not required. Training and on-going support is provided to volunteer coaches.

“Volunteers must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players,” said Rich Ekman, sports program coordinator. “Volunteer coaches are an essential part of the program, providing support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth.”

All volunteer adult coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal background check, as well as online concussion awareness training.

The online volunteer application and background check available at http://www.bendparksandrec.org/volunteers/volunteer-application/.

Pre-season coach training is Wednesday, Dec. 14, at 6 p.m. at the District Office, 799 SW Columbia St.

Prescribed fire preparation to begin in Shevlin Park and Riley Ranch

To reduce the risk of a catastrophic fire in Shevlin Park and to accelerate field restoration at Riley Ranch Nature Reserve, Bend Park and Recreation District is beginning prescribed fire preparations as part of its vegetation management plan for the parks.

At Shevlin Park, visitors may observe employees conducting tree thinning, understory brush mowing and slash pile burning to help reduce hazardous fuel loads and prepare for next year’s prescribed fire efforts. The work is expected to be on-going for several months and visitors may hear machinery and observe small amounts of smoke from slash piles.

The hazard fuel reduction area is located in Shevlin Park on the south side of Johnson Road.  Next year’s prescribed fire will begin immediately south of Aspen Meadow and the parking lot.  It will extend to the east near the Tumalo Creek Trail and west near the old railroad grade. Signage is in place to inform park visitors about the work.

In addition, beginning Monday, Nov. 14, the District and Deschutes County will use fire for a field restoration project at Riley Ranch Nature Reserve scheduled to open in 2017.  A field burner towed behind a tractor will be used to burn up to 50 acres.  The work is expected to be finished in about a week and is unlikely to produce much smoke in the area.

“Re-introducing fire to Shevlin Park and Riley Ranch will provide numerous benefits to the park’s natural resources,” said Jeff Amaral, natural resources manager for Bend Park and Recreation District.

The goals of the 2017 prescribed fire as well as the overall vegetation management plan are to:

  • Maintain plant communities that are resistant to a large scale disturbance
  • Create and maintain a landscape that is resilient to disturbance
  • Create and maintain wildlife habitat
  • Maintain natural aesthetics for increasing recreational opportunities
  • Preserve the historical and archeological heritage of parks

“Historically, fire was the main disturbance that created and maintained Shevlin Park’s vegetation species composition and densities.  Without fire, the park’s landscape drastically changed with less resilient plant species and increased risk of a catastrophic fire,” he added.

Ice season opens at The Pavilion on Halloween

The Bend Park and Recreation District will kick off The Pavilion’s ice season on Oct. 31. On Halloween, The Pavilion will be open from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. for open skate, giving community members their first chance to get on the ice.

A special opening day fee of $6 per person including skate rental will be offered. Skaters are encouraged to wear Halloween costumes if they choose.

The 2016-17 ice season is expected to run through mid-April, weather permitting. The Pavilion will be open from dawn to late night, seven days a week, and include open skate opportunities and expanded programs.  Weekly schedules are available at http://www.bendparksandrec.org/the-pavilion/schedules.

“The Pavilion hosted more than 40,000 visits in its abbreviated inaugural season, and we are excited to open much earlier this fall,” said Matt Mercer, recreation services director, Bend Park and Recreation District. “Due to a smooth process establishing the ice sheet, opening early on Halloween is exciting for us and we look ahead to a full schedule of programming starting in November and expanded open skate opportunities.”

Public skate sessions including open skate, family skate, parent-tot skate and flex skate, which offers opportunities for a variety of activities from freestyle and fitness skating to hosting large school groups. A special rate of $6 including skate rental is available for family skate and parent-tot skate. Schedules are available online at http://www.bendparksandrec.org/the-pavilion/schedules/.

New this season, The Pavilion is offering season passes for unlimited public skate session use along with options for 10-visit passes and single-visit entrance.

Youth and adult hockey programs, curling and skate lessons begin in late-November. Many programs for November and December are nearly full with limited availability for registration now at https://register.bendparksandrec.org. In addition, there are pre-season hockey clinics and scheduled specialized ice times for hocking and curling practice available beginning Nov. 1.

A second session of ice skating and sports programs, offered from January to April, will open for registration beginning on Dec. 12.

Bend Park and Recreation District opens fall art programs registration

Committed to quality art education and play, the Bend Park and Recreation District is continuing the Art Station and its operations and will begin classes again on Oct. 27.

Programs feature a variety of mediums including painting, drawing, printing, sculpture, jewelry, glass arts, ceramics, pottery, textiles and mixed media.

The Bend Park and Recreation District worked quickly to restart Art Station programs that were previously offered by Arts Central when the not-for-profit organization closed in late summer.

The District was a partner of Arts Central for 13 years, offering art recreation and education for children and adults at the Art Station, and will continue the legacy of providing quality art programs and instructors for youth and adults.

“Our goal is to help individuals pursue their passions – in whatever ways those recreation opportunities speak to them,” said Sue Boettner, recreation manager, Bend Park and Recreation District. “For many members of our community, arts and culture are their passion and we want to foster that.”

The November and December programs for adults, youth and families are online at a new Art Station webpage. Program registration is available now.

The District will also offer art parties and group events at the Art Station. More information is at a new Art Parties webpage.

Winter-spring recreation programs will offer a full schedule of art programs, and registration will open Dec. 12 for programs starting in January and running through May.

 

Volunteer basketball coaches needed

Bend Park and Recreation District is seeking adult volunteers to coach teams for the 2016 middle school boys’ basketball league. Coaches are needed now for teams at Cascade, Skyview, High Desert and La Pine middle schools.

Basketball experience is preferred but not required. Training and on-going support is provided to volunteer coaches.

The basketball season is Nov. 1 to mid-December. Coaches volunteer approximately five hours per week with practices and games held at area schools on mid-week evenings.

“Volunteers must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players,” said Greg Brady, sports program coordinator. “Volunteer coaches are an essential part of the program, providing support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth.”

Pre-season coaches training is Wednesday, Oct. 26 at 5:30 p.m. All volunteer adult coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal background check, as well as online concussion awareness training.

The online volunteer application and background check available at http://www.bendparksandrec.org/volunteers/volunteer-application/.

District receives national award for riverside corridor

Bend, Ore. – (Sept. 30, 2016) – The work done to transform the Deschutes River access areas in the heart of Bend has been honored with a national award.

Bend Park and Recreation District has been selected to receive a National “Facility or Park Design Award” by the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) for its role in the riverside parks corridor transformation.

The District’s involvement included:

  • Acquiring 43.7 acres of property for the Riverbend, Farewell Bend, Miller’s Landing and McKay parks;
  • Negotiating easements for the trail (completing key gaps in the 31-mile Deschutes River Trail);
  • Collaborating with private property owners;
  • Conducting extensive public outreach; and
  • Designing and constructing the four parks, trail and the Bend Whitewater Park.

“It was not long ago when the Deschutes River was used only for timber industry purposes and not recreation,” said Don Horton, executive director, Bend Park and Recreation District. “That heritage is important to remember as is the monumental contributions and vision of people like Bill Smith, the Cushman, Miller and Robinson families, Trust for Public Lands and the Bend Paddle Trail Alliance to help residents and visitors enjoy access to the river.”

The District’s total investment in the river corridor project is $18.7 million, including:

  • $1.6M for 22-acre Farewell Bend Park including a playground, two river-viewing shelters, beach area and a boardwalk extending into the river with interpretive signage.
  • $2.7M for 13-acre Riverbend Park including a large community events venue hosting dozens of events each year and a beach area.
  • $1.4M for 4.7-acre Miller’s Landing Park including a community garden, riverside boardwalk, beach area and nature play area.
  • $1.1M for 3.9-acre McKay Park including changing rooms, beach area and spectator viewing areas. Expected completion is winter 2017.
  • $9.7 million for the Bend Whitewater Park, including three separate channels for floating passageway, whitewater recreation, and habitat area, and a pedestrian bridge.
  • $2.2M for accessible river trail improvements including a new undercrossing.

The total District investment would have been larger if not for help from Bill Smith, president of William Smith Properties. Smith sold the 19-acre parcel that became Riverbend Park and the District headquarters for significantly less than market value, saving the District funds to be used for other projects.

“This award is shared with members of our community, because without their input about priorities for parks and recreation, the river development would not be what it is today,” said Horton. “Residents and private businesses have helped identify acquisition and development priorities of our parks, and made it possible for the Bend Whitewater Park and the extension of the Deschutes River Trail through this corridor to be realized.”

Each year, NRPA National Awards are presented to individuals and agencies across the U.S. to honor their efforts in the field of parks and recreation.  This year, BPRD was one of six agency award winners. The award will be publicly presented during a special reception at the 2016 NRPA Annual Conference in St. Louis on Oct. 6.

“NRPA is pleased to honor our nation’s park and recreation heroes—agencies and individuals who work tirelessly and with passion to improve the lives of their citizens and make their communities great,” said Barbara Tulipane, president and CEO of NRPA.

A full list of NRPA National Award winners is available at www.nrpa.org/nationalawards.

Boys middle school basketball registration deadline approaching; volunteer coaches needed

Bend, Ore. – (Sept. 26, 2016) –Bend Park and Recreation District is currently registering for its boys’ middle school basketball program and the deadline is coming up on Oct. 7. Volunteer adult coaches are also needed.

This joint program between Bend-La Pine Schools and the District emphasizes individual and team skill development, maximum participation, good sportsmanship and fun. Last year, the program included more than 460 participants on 45 teams.

The boys’ middle school basketball season begins Nov. 1 and continues to mid-December. School-based teams practice during the week with games on weeknights. Coaches select practice days and times.

Participant registration is available online at www.bendparksandrec.org or at District facilities.

The District is also seeking volunteer coaches for the program. All volunteer adult coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal background check, as well as online concussion awareness training.

Online volunteer application and background check available at www.bendparksandrec.org.

The girls’ middle school basketball program runs from January to March and the registration deadline is Dec. 16.

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Park and Recreation District shares water test results

Tests conducted at Juniper Swim and Fitness Center, Genna Stadium, parks and others built prior to 1986

Bend, Ore. – (Sept. 16, 2016) – The Bend Park and Recreation District tested samples of water in more than 150 water fixtures in its recreation facilities, parks and other locations owned by the District and the results are now available.

The testing to determine presence of lead and copper in drinking water found a significant majority of the results are under the Environmental Protection Agency’s and Oregon Health Authority’s Maximum Concentration Level (MCL) for lead.

“Given the heightened interest locally and nationally, our Board of Directors asked for testing to occur to ensure safe drinking water in our parks and facilities,” said Don Horton, executive director, Bend Park and Recreation District.

All samples collected from drinking water fixtures at the Juniper Swim and Fitness Center, Old Bend Gym, former District administration building currently occupied by Cascade School of Music, Harmon Hobby Hut, Larkspur and Pioneer parks had acceptable or non-detectable levels.

Seven fixtures tested had levels higher than the OHA threshold; however, all of these fixtures are not primary drinking water sources and are infrequently used.

Three exterior hose bibs at two caretaker houses, an umpire shower at Genna Stadium, a janitor sink at the former District administration building, and a pool deck bib and indoor pool water supply by-pass valve at Juniper Swim and Fitness Center had results slightly higher than the OHA threshold for lead. Test results found that copper levels are well below the MCL in all locations. See summary results here.

“Follow up flush-testing was done to locate the source of lead in these seven fixtures and indicates the lead originates within the fixtures rather than building infrastructure,” said Mark Ellington, District asset program manager who led the testing efforts.

Occupants of affected buildings have been notified of the initial and flush-sample results and have been provided a copy of the lab tests. They have also been instructed not to consume the water from the specific outlet until fixtures are replaced. As soon as the District replaces the seven fixtures, staff will conduct follow-up testing to confirm successful corrective measures.

At the July 16, 2016 board meeting, District staff presented an action plan to test for the presence of lead and copper in the drinking water at District buildings and parks.

Samples were collected between July 28 and Aug. 14 and were processed by UMPQUA Research Company, the same resource used by the Bend La Pine School District for its recent testing.

Bend Park and Recreation District discussing possibility of resuming Art Station programs

Bend, Ore. – (Sept. 9, 2016) – The Bend Park and Recreation District Board of Directors have authorized staff to pursue the possibility of taking over programs previously provided by the recently closed Art Station. The Art Station program was part of Art Central’s offering and is the only portion of the organization being considered by the District.

“Like the rest of the community, we felt the loss of the recent closure of Art Central. With our Board of Directors’ support, we are in discussions to possibly enter into a program to continue the programs previously provided at the Art Station,” said Don Horton, executive director, Bend Park and Recreation District. 

“The Art Central board of directors is very excited that Bend Park and Recreation District is considering assuming Art Station programs. The board and staff have received many heartfelt comments and support from the community, and appreciates all efforts to restore the vital services Art Station provided,” said Bert Kronmiller, Art Central board president.

Bend Park and Recreation District has been a partner of Art Central for 13 years, offering art recreation and education for children and adults at the Art Station and we share many of the same program instructors.

“Creating a program – even when the facility and supplies are readily available – will take some time to organize,” he added.

The District will continue discussions about a possible program at the Art Station and expects to have a decision in the coming weeks.

“The viability of this effort will be based on finding a long-term home for the programs and for the program to be financially sustainable,” said Horton.

Portland Winterhawks hockey clinics in Bend Sept. 17

Bend, Ore. – (Sept. 2, 2016) – Central Oregon youth hockey players and coaches will get an opportunity to learn from the Portland Winterhawks when the Western Hockey League team visits Bend on Sept. 17.

The Bend Park and Recreation District is currently accepting registration for two youth dryland clinics on Saturday, Sept. 17, at The Pavilion, 1001 SW Bradbury Way.

  • 9-10 a.m.: seven to 10 years of age
  • 10:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m.: 11 to 14 years of age

Cost is $5 per child for the clinic. Spectators are welcome for free. For the dryland clinic, youth participants are asked to bring his or her hockey stick, athletic shoes and athletic wear. Sticks will be available to borrow if needed.

To register for the youth clinics visithttps://register.bendparksandrec.org.

The Portland Winterhawks are one of the most successful Major Junior hockey franchises in North America, three-time WHL champions and two-time winners of the prestigious Memorial Cup, the “National Championship” of junior hockey.

Between clinics the Winterhawks will be available for merchandise sales and autographs.

In addition to the youth clinics, there will be a coaching clinic from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. The coaching clinic is free and open to coaches of all sports – hockey and other sports – who want to gain better awareness of coaching philosophy. The coaching clinic will be led by Mike Johnston, Winterhawks vice president, general manager and head coach, and will also take place at the Pavilion.

Coach Johnston is entering his second stint as the Winterhawks’ head coach, having also coached the team from 2008-2014.  He was formerly head coach of the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins (2014-15) and an assistant coach with the Los Angeles Kings and Vancouver Canucks, as well as the Canadian Men’s National Team at the 1998 Olympics.

To register for the coaching clinic, contact The Pavilion staff at (541) 389-7588.

Farewell Bend pedestrian bridge to reopen Sept. 10

Bend, Ore. – (Sept. 2, 2016) – The work to replace the Farewell Bend Bridge is wrapping up and the bridge will reopen to pedestrian use beginning Sept. 10.

The bridge provides important connectivity between Farewell Bend Park, Riverbend Park and the Deschutes River Trail, and is highly used by walkers, runners, bicyclist and park maintenance personnel. 

The Bend Park and Recreation District worked with Deschutes Construction to remove the 75-year-old former bridge and replace it with a steel bridge that is 160 feet long and 12 feet wide.

“The new Farewell Bend Bridge opens up the view of the Deschutes River considerably and will hopefully serve us for as many years as its predecessor,” said Brian Hudspeth, Bend Park and Recreation District development manager. “We appreciate everyone’s patience and adherence to the detours while the project was underway.”

For project maps, schedules and updates, visit the project webpage.

Volunteer coaches needed for record-high youth flag football program

Bend, Ore. – (Aug. 30, 2016) — The Bend Park and Recreation District Youth Flag Football program enrollment is at an all-time record high with more than 470 youth participating on 47 teams. Adult volunteers are needed to coach teams this season.

The fall flag football season runs Sept. 6 through Nov. 5. Program participants are boys and girls in first through sixth grade in the 2016-17 school year. Practices are held twice weekly with games played on Sundays. Coaches volunteer approximately five hours per week for the 10-week season.

Volunteer coaches are needed for the following teams:

·         Bear Creek/Silver Rail Elementary Schools — 1st/2nd grade Packers

·         Highland Magnet/Pine Ridge/Silver Rail Elementary Schools — 5th/6th grade Ravens

·         Highland Magnet School — 1st/2nd grade Jets

·         Highland Magnet School — 3rd/4th grade Packers

·         Ponderosa Elementary School — 1st/2nd grade Steelers

·         Ponderosa Elementary School — 1st/2nd grade Jaguars

·         Lava Ridge and Ponderosa Elementary/Sky View Middle School — 5th/6th grade Steelers

·         Cascade Middle School/High Lakes Elementary School — 5th/6th grade Texans

“Volunteer coaches are an essential part of the program, providing support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth,” said Rich Ekman, sports program coordinator, Bend Park and Recreation District. “Volunteers must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players.”

Training and on-going support is provided to volunteer coaches. All coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal history background check, as well as online concussion awareness training.

Online volunteer application and background check available at www.bendparksandrec.org.

For more information contact:

Rich Ekman, Sports Program Coordinator
541-706-6126, rich@bendparksandrec.org

Kim Johnson, Volunteer Coordinator
541-706-6127, kim@bendparksandrec.org

Notice of Public Hearing by the Board of County Commissioners of Deschutes County, Oregon

On September 14, 2016, at 10:00am., the Deschutes County Board of Commissioners will hold a public hearing to consider a petition of annexation of certain property owners by The Tree Farm LLC into the Bend Park & Recreation District. This hearing will be held in the Board of County Commissioners’ Hearing Room, First Floor, 1300 NW Wall Street, Bend, Oregon. All interested persons may appear and be heard.

The property Petitioner proposes to annex is identified as 19100 Skyliners Road, Deschutes County, Oregon. To view a map legal description of the boundaries of the proposed annexation, contact the Dechutes County Counsel’s Office at 388-6622.

Deschutes County encourages persons with disabilities to participate in all programs and activities. This event/location is accessible to people with disabilities. If you need accommodations to make participation possible, please call (541) 388-6572, or send an e-mail to bonnie.baker@deschutes.org.

Notice_Public Hearing_tree farm annexation_2016.9.14

Design planning to begin for expanded Bend Senior Center

Working name – Larkspur Center – reflects broader programs and services

Bend, Ore. – (Aug. 29, 2016) – The Bend Park and Recreation District’s multiple projects on the Eastside will get another boost with the beginning design phase of a major expansion to the Bend Senior Center.

Building on the legacy of the Bend Senior Center, the expansion will include a working name — Larkspur Center – to welcome people of all ages, while preserving, continuing and expanding programs and services for older adults currently provided at the facility. The estimated $16.5 million project (in today’s dollars) is anticipated to be completed in approximately three years.

“For the young-at-heart, the Larkspur Center is building a future of play for all,” said Don Horton, executive director, Bend Park and Recreation District. “The new center will be a place for people of all ages to come together while it also retains and enhances programs and services to older adults.”

Designed to be a gathering place for all, this new facility will include approximately 40,000 square feet of additional space and offer opportunities to enhance lifelong fitness, learning and enrichment. When completed, the Larkspur Center will be nearly four times the size of the Bend Senior Center.

The expanded facility will better meet the needs of a rapidly growing segment of the community with changing interests. The latest U.S. Census Bureau figures indicate that the number of Deschutes County residents 65 and older rose by approximately 39 percent from April 2010 to July 2015, which was the fastest growing percentage increase in Oregon counties.

The Bend Senior Center opened in 2001, and an event room was added in 2004. The current facility is 14,000 square feet of which only 7,500 square feet is functional program space. In 2011, the District convened a Vision and Planning Committee and followed up in 2013 with a Master Plan based on the recommendations. Limited modifications were made in 2015 as precursor to the larger-scale project set to begin.

The District is currently working on design and preliminary planning, and much work will be done in the background before construction even begins.

“As we progress, we’ll be sharing designs and answering questions from our community,” said Jim Figurski, BPRD project manager.

The Larkspur Center will complement programs and services offered at the Juniper Swim & Fitness Center with minimal duplication between the two facilities. It also adds to the growing list of the District’s Eastside projects including Rockridge Park, Canal Row Park, Ponderosa Park, Pine Nursery improvements and future Southeast Bend community park.

The Larkspur Center meeting and social spaces will be increased and enhanced to better serve current and new programs. Major new amenities planned include a warm water pool, multi-purpose gymnasium, fitness facilities and indoor walking track, as well as opportunities for learning and community-building.

The District has been saving money for the Larkspur project for the past four years. The center will be paid for through existing and future tax resources– without any tax increase.

As information is available about the project, visit bendparksandrec.org/larkspurcenter for updates.

Kids’ Triathlon coming up on Aug. 28

Bend, Ore. – (Aug. 12, 2016) — Youth ages 4 through 15 years old are invited to swim, bike and run at the Juniper Swim & Fitness Center Kids’ Triathlon, on Sunday, Aug. 28, at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center and Juniper Park.

The event will offer varying race lengths for different age groups: 

·         4  – 6 years old:     25 yard swim, 1/3 mile bike and 400 yard run

·         7 – 9 years old:      50 yard swim, 1 mile bike and 800 yard run

·         10 – 12 years old:  100 yard swim, 1.5 mile bike and 1 mile run

·         13 – 15 years old: 200 yard swim, 2 mile bike and 1.5 mile run

Non-timed, the triathlon focuses on kids having fun in a safe and encouraging environment. Swimming will be held in the center’s supervised pool and biking and running courses will be in Juniper Park.

Participants are encouraged to pre-register online at www.bendparksandrec.org, now through Saturday, Aug. 27 at noon. Registration is limited to 100 participants.

Participant fee is $25 for in-district residents and $30 for out-of-district residents. Event t-shirts are included with registration. If available, day-of-event registration will be open on-site from 7:30 a.m. to 8:15 a.m.

The event kicks off with a mandatory all-athlete meeting at 9 a.m. followed by the age categories racing in stages beginning at 9:30 a.m. The event continues until 1 p.m. and includes vendor booths on site. 

Hosted by Bend Park and Recreation District, the triathlon is presented by Awbrey Dental Group and sponsored by Sun Country Tours, Deschutes Multisport Club, the Human Bean, Apex Physical Therapy and Pine Ridge Inn.

For additional information and to register, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or call (541) 389-7665.

Fall recreation program registration opens Aug. 8

Bend, Ore. – (Aug. 4, 2016) — It’s still summer, but Bend Park and Recreation District is thinking about the cooler days of fall. Registration for fall recreation programs begins Monday, Aug. 8.

Fall programs run from Sept. 1 through the end of December and include youth and adult activities, before- and afterschool care, fitness, swimming, sports and outdoor recreation.

Registration will be available online at https://register.bendparksandrec.org or in person at the Juniper Swim & Fitness Center, Bend Senior Center and The Pavilion during regular business hours.

Program descriptions and schedules are available for review online beginning Friday, Aug. 5 at www.bendparksandrec.org.

For additional information, contact the BRPD Customer Service Team at (541) 389-7275 or visit www.bendparksandrec.org.

Youth tackle football program needs volunteer coaches

Bend, Ore. – (July 28, 2016) – Fall means football and Bend Park and Recreation District has immediate need for adult volunteers as coaches for youth tackle football teams. Several teams are filled with students ready to play but do not have a coach at this time.

 

Program participants are students entering grades 4 and 5. The season begins mid-August and continues to mid-October. Teams practice two to three times per week with games played on Sundays. Coaches select practice days and times.

 

“Volunteer coaches must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players,” said Greg Brady, sports program coordinator, Bend Park and Recreation District. 

 

Orientation/training for coaches will be held in early August and on-going staff support is provided. All coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal background check, as well as online concussion awareness training.

 

Online volunteer application and background check available at www.bendparksandrec.org.

 

For more information contact:

Greg Brady, Sports Program Coordinator

541-706-6124, greg@bendparksandrec.org

13th Annual Gopher Broke Scramble Golf Tournament Sponsor and Team Opportunities Available

Bend, Ore. – (July 21, 2016) –Bend Park & Recreation Foundation is seeking business and food/beverage sponsors and inviting players to join in for the 13th Annual Bend Park & Recreation Foundation Gopher Broke Scramble Golf Tournament. The tournament has a long standing reputation as one of the best in Bend. Proceeds from the event help provide low income children and families in our community with scholarship support to participate in Bend Park & Recreation District programs.

The 2016 tournament is scheduled for Friday, Sept. 30, at Bend Golf & Country Club.

The Gopher Broke Scramble features a 12:30 p.m. shotgun start with a fun welcome at registration, food and beverage sponsored by local businesses offered at each hole on the course, great prizes and a happy hour awards presentation. Registration is $600 for a team of four or $150 for individual players.

Information on sponsorship opportunities and registration forms available online at http://www.bendparksandrec.org/gopherbroke

Bend Park and Recreation District provides more than $250,000 annually in needs based assistance to families to support participation in recreation programs. Bend Park & Recreation Foundation provides scholarship funds to support this effort to ensure that all families have access to quality programs that foster self-confidence and encourage healthy lifestyles, regardless of ability to pay.

For more information, contact Kim Johnson, BPR Foundation administrator, 541-706-6127, kim@bendparksandrec.org or Sue Boettner, event coordinator, 541-706-6231, sueb@bendparksandrec.org.

Bend Park and Recreation District board approves reopening of passageway at Bend Whitewater Park

Bend, Ore. – (July 20, 2016) – The Bend Park and Recreation District Board of Directors voted to approve a plan to reopen the passageway channel at the Bend Whitewater Park. The vote occurred at the public meeting on July 19.

District staff presented information about the evaluations done after the recent closure, and recommended that the passageway channel is ready to reopen because of the operational changes made and improvements to inform river users about the experience.

The staff presented a reopening plan that includes operational management of the passageway, removal of the boom, signage, in-person education, online information and media messaging.  The reopening date is scheduled for Saturday, July 23. 

“Water flow conditions have been changed, so it is very different experience than during the first hot weekend of June,” said Don Horton, executive director, Bend Park and Recreation District. “We’re also communicating with increased signage and in other ways about how to use the park, the proper gear to wear and the conditions that exist in the passageway.”

Safety education efforts for river users

The District is working collaboratively with the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office and the Oregon State Marine Board to inform river users about safety.

An informational kick-off event will be Saturday, July 23, at Riverbend and McKay parks. At each park, District park stewards and members of the sheriff’s office swiftwater rescue team will talk with river users about proper equipment and preparation for recreating on the river. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., there will be information available and staff members and volunteers to answer questions at beach locations at each park.

“Preparing river users for what to expect in flat water as well as the Bend Whitewater Park is important and we appreciate the support of our partners to reach more people before they enter the river,” said Horton.

New signage along the river, as well as updated media communications and website information is also being introduced this week.

Design and engineering modifications being evaluated

In addition to operations and education improvements, a third aspect of enhanced functionality is design engineering.

The intent of the passageway channel design was to:

  • Remove hazards associated with the old Colorado Avenue pedestrian bridge and Old Mill Pond Dam;
  • Provide for an easy transition from the Mill Pond elevation to the Mirror Pond elevation for a range of flotation devices, kayaks and stand-up paddleboards.
  • Accommodate fish passage upstream and provide habitat improvements

“Two of the three goals met the design intent of the project, so we have more work to do to meet our full expectations,” said Horton.  “The design team has provided recommendations that will be evaluated, discussed and brought back to the board of directors at a future meeting.”

Horton also noted that permitting for any in-channel engineering or construction work may require more than one season to fully realize.

Youth Soccer League enrollment at record high; Volunteer soccer coaches needed

Bend, Ore. – (July 20, 2016) — Soccer fever is alive in Central Oregon! The 2016 Bend Unified Recreation Soccer League enrollment is at an all-time record high with more than 1,800 youth participating on 136 teams. Adult volunteers are needed to coach teams in the joint program between Bend Park and Recreation District and Bend FC Timbers.

The fall soccer season runs Aug. 22 to Oct. 29. Program participants are boys and girls going into first through eighth grade in the 2016-17 school year. Practices are held twice weekly with games on Saturdays. Coaches volunteer approximately five hours per week for the 10-week season.

“Volunteer coaches are an essential part of the program, providing support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth,” said Rich Ekman, sports program coordinator, Bend Park and Recreation District. “Volunteers must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players.”

Volunteer coaches must attend a pre-season volunteer orientation/training, and on-going support and training is provided. All coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal history background check, as well as online concussion awareness training.

Online volunteer application and background check available at www.bendparksandrec.org.

For more information contact:
Rich Ekman, Sports Program Coordinator
541-706-6126, rich@bendparksandrec.org

Kim Johnson, Volunteer Coordinator
541-706-6127, kim@bendparksandrec.org

New Farewell Bend Bridge to be lifted into place

Bend, Ore. – (July 14, 2016) – A significant milestone is occurring next week at the Farewell Bend Bridge when the new bridge sections will be hoisted into place by crane after the remaining bridge center is removed.

The Deschutes River will be closed to river users at the bridge — both upstream and downstream access – beginning Thursday, July 21.  The closure will remain in effect until the new bridge is set in place. The duration is likely to be two to three days.

During the river closure, river users will not be able to get around the bridge, and must exit the river. Temporary signs will be on site at Farewell Bend Park.

A crane will be used to remove the remaining bridge section on July 21, ahead of the delivery of the new pedestrian bridge on July 22. The new bridge will arrive in four sections and will be assembled on both sides of the river. Built of pre-fabricated steel, the new bridge will be 160 feet long and 12 feet wide.

Deschutes Construction anticipates the new bridge will be set into place across the river on Friday, July 22, between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. The crane will place each half section in place and it will be secured in the middle.

The river trail on the west side of the river will be closed intermittently depending on crane operations between July 21 and July 23.

The public is not allowed in the construction zone, but for those interested in viewing the bridge removal and installation, the best vantage point will be from the Farewell Bend Park boardwalk just downstream of the bridge location.

The new bridge will be completed in August. Until open, all bridge traffic is detoured to the Bill Healy, Columbia Street and Old Mill bridges.

For project maps, schedules and updates, visit the project webpage.

Portage path improves; moves inside McKay Park

 

 

Bend, Ore. – (July 7, 2016) – The Bend Park and Recreation District is improving the portage path at McKay Park and the Bend Whitewater Park beginning the evening of Friday, July 8.

River users now will be able to exit the river prior to the Colorado Ave. bridge and after a short walk around the bridge to Shevlin Hixon Rd. re-enter McKay Park. The more direct portage path will create distance between river users and sewer and park construction projects, and make for more “feet friendly” surfaces.

The District worked with Empire Development to accelerate work at McKay Park to accommodate river users and improve the portage path experience.

“It’s a busy time for river recreation and we worked quickly to create a safer, more direct portage path,” said Brian Hudspeth, development manager, Bend Park and Recreation District. “Signage is directing river users and we appreciate adherence to the pathways only and away from the construction zones and riparian areas along the bank.”

The surfaces of the portage path are primarily concrete and trail surface; however, footwear that secures to feet is still recommended.

It’s Time for Bend’s Old Fashioned July 4th Festivities

 

Come celebrate our country’s independence at the July 4th Pet Parade and Old Fashioned Festival, long-time Bend traditions and signature Bend Park & Recreation District events.

As Bend’s largest parade, the Pet Parade has been held since 1932 and kicks off another fun-filled July 4th at 10:00 a.m., downtown. Everyone is welcome to participate and no registration is necessary. The decorating party and lineup begin at 9:00 a.m. on Wall Street in front of the Bend-LaPine School Education Center at 520 NW Wall St. Bring your leashed pet (sorry, no rabbits, cats or aggressive dogs) or favorite stuffed animal, plenty of water, pet clean-up bags and your bike, trike or wagon. Bend Park & Recreation will provide decorations, keepsake buttons and popsicles for the kids. Commercial signage, floats, solicitation, motorized vehicles and distribution of anything to spectators are prohibited.

After the parade, the fun continues at Drake Park with the Old Fashioned July 4th Festival. Kids and adults alike can enjoy free old-fashioned games and the Kids & Family Fun Area. There will also be live music featuring favorite local bands, a variety of food booths, a festive photo booth and over 100 artisan booths.

Downtown road closures take place from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. Alternative transportation is encouraged and there will be a free bike valet area in Drake Park near the permanent restrooms. Riverside Blvd. will be closed from 6:30 am to 5:30 pm. If you need to drive, free weekend parking is available in the parking garage on Lava Street or near Harmon Park.

For the parade route and additional information, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or call Bend Park & Recreation District at (541) 389-7275.

Please see below for the activities at a glance.

 

July 4th Pet Parade – Downtown Bend

Sponsored by Bend Pet Express and presented by the Bend Kiwanis Club

  • A community tradition since the 1930’s – now designated as a Oregon Heritage Tradition
  • All ages welcome.
  • Come dressed in costume with your pet or stuffed animal on pulled wagons, bikes or trikes.
  • No registration necessary.
  • Kids receive a keepsake and popsicle.
  • Pets must be leashed – be responsible for and clean up after your pet.
  • No rabbits, cats or aggressive dogs.
  • If you have large animals, please arrive early.
  • Cyclists and equestrians wear your helmets.
  • Please do not give away animals.
  • No solicitation, commercial floats, motorized vehicles, motorcycles or distribution of anything to spectators.
  • Decorating Party & Parade Line Up: 9:00 am, Parade Begins: 10:00 am
  • Lineup is on Wall Street in front of the Bend LaPine School Dist. Admin Building
  • ADA spectator areas are located on Wall street in front of the CC McKenzie store and on Lava and Minnesota. Parking is recommended in the Parking Garage.
  • Downtown streets along the parade route will close at 9:15 am. Please arrive early.

July 4th Old Fashioned Festival – Drake Park

Presented by Zolo – Central Oregon’s KOHD/ABC & KBNZ/CBS

Pancake Breakfast: 8:00 – 11:00 am
Presented by the Sunrise Lions Club

Live Music & Entertainment – Pavilion Main Stage: 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
Hosted by Zolo Media and presented by Subaru of Bend

11:00   National Anthem Bella Acappella

11:10   Juniper Swim & Fitness Dance party

11:30   Popcorn trio

12:30   Smokey Bear & Friends

12:45   Furkini

2:00  2nd Annual Pie Eating Contest

2:30   The Gambler & The Thief

3:30   Pie Eating Contest-Final Heat

Old Fashioned Games: 11:00 am – 3:00 pm
Sponsored by Bend Kiwanis Club and hosted by Juniper Swim & Fitness Center

3-Legged Race, Gunny Sack Race, Parachute Play, Hula Hoop Contest, Ball Relays, Water Balloon Toss, Sponge Relay, Watermelon Eating Contest

Kids & Family Fun Area: 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
Sponsored by The Law Offices of Warren John West, P.C.

  • Festive photo booth for free photos – presented by Bigfoot Beverages
  • The Fish Fling – presented by Desert Orthopedics
  • Flush-a-Duck – presented by Central Oregon Disaster Relief
  • Helicopter Landing at 11:30 am in Harmon Park – presented by AirLink

And fun and games with The Bend Fire Department, Deschutes National Forest, Central Oregon Prospectors Association, Life Flight Network, Epikos Church, The Humane Society of Central Oregon, Fences for Fido, Neighbor Impact, The Rotary Club of Bend, Central Oregon Aerial Arts & more!

 

Bend Park and Recreation District closes Passageway channel at whitewater park for evaluation

Experts-only whitewater channel remains open

Bend, Ore. – June 9, 2016 — The Bend Park and Recreation District is taking action to evaluate the safety and overall experience of its new Bend Whitewater Park. As an immediate step, the Passageway channel at the park will be closed beginning today while evaluations are conducted. The passageway is likely to be closed throughout the summer season.

“Everything we do as an organization is for the enrichment of this community and we can do better here,” said Don Horton, executive director, Bend Park and Recreation District. “The Bend Whitewater Park’s Passageway channel is not meeting expectations and we’re hearing about safety concerns, so it is being closed while we re-evaluate its function. We have not yet met our high goals for this project.”

During several days of record-breaking temperatures, thousands of people experienced the Passageway channel for the first time. The early season river activity has provided opportunity for feedback from many users and observers.

“We deeply appreciate the input received in the past few days because it is helping us serve the community better,” said Horton. “Many people have been enjoying the Passageway and we appreciate the support from people who may be disappointed by this decision. It’s clear that this is not the passageway experience we set out to create, and we need to regroup and see if it can be improved.”

River users can continue to float as in past years by exiting the river prior to the Colorado Ave. bridge and re-entering the river at McKay Park. Signage is being added immediately along the river and at beach put-in locations to indicate the change for floaters.

The decision to close the Passageway channel to floaters was made in consultation with Bend Paddle Trail Alliance leaders who are supportive of the closure.

“The Bend Whitewater Park is the first in the Pacific Northwest and is unique to our geologic area. It’s quite typical in these types of projects to need to make adjustments,” said Justin Rae, president, Bend Paddle Trail Alliance. “BPTA plans to be involved as Bend Park and Recreation District enlists additional experts to evaluate options for improvements.”

The Bend Whitewater Park’s Whitewater channel will remain open for expert river users who enter from downriver at McKay Park for whitewater kayaking, surfing and paddleboarding; however, floating through the area from upstream is not permitted.

Early communications about the bond measure proposal and the project described a safe passageway and Bend Park and Recreation District is holding itself accountable on delivering quality park and recreation experiences for the community.

The current Passageway includes a series of Class I and Class II rapids to accommodate an approximate 8-ft. drop in elevation in a 300-ft. stretch of the river.  The channel also serves as a fish ladder providing passage that will continue to be part of the project.

A timeline is in process for additional evaluations by the engineering firm that designed the park, swift water rescue experts and other experts to provide insights and recommendations. As evaluations occur, BPRD will update the public on status and timeline developments.

To begin the process, today, sandbags were installed in the whitewater channel to reduce safety hazards previously identified and to improve performance of the surf wave features used by whitewater enthusiasts.

For floaters:

  • It is required to exit prior to the Colorado Ave. Bridge. To portage, follow temporary detour signs to walk on the sidewalk on the west side of Shevlin Hixon Road to reenter the river at McKay Park.
  • Wear a life jacket. They are required for all boaters, paddleboarders and children 12 years and under, and are recommended for everyone.
  • Consider your own and your children’s abilities before entering the water and always supervise children in and around the water.
  • Use equipment intended for river recreation. Rental equipment is available at Riverbend Park and local retailers. Complimentary use of life jackets for children 12 and under is available at the Riverbend Park rental trailer.

Whitewater kayakers, surfers and paddleboarders:

  • Access to the Whitewater channel is from downriver at McKay Park or Miller’s Landing Park. Do not access the channel from upriver or via the habitat channel.
  • The river-left (west) island is for line-up. There is no public access to the river-right island.
  • Life jackets and whistles are required for all boaters and paddleboarders.
  • Helmets are recommended. Board leashes, however, should not be used as they can get caught on underwater elements.
  • Always scout the conditions as river flows and wave features change frequently.
  • Consider the waves above and below and plan your exit routes for each wave.
  • Check the Bend Whitewater Park Facebook page for updates and conditions at Facebook.com/BendWhitewaterPark

Media Contact:

Julie Brown
Communications and Community Relations Manager
Direct: (541) 706-6119/ Office: (541) 389-7275 / Cell: (541) 743-1038
julie@bendparksandrec.org

Common skin ailment present at Discovery Park Lake

With the warm weather upon us, a common skin condition has been reported at Discovery Park Lake and caution is advised for park users.  Cercarial Dermatitis (also known as Swimmer’s Itch) has been identified and signs are now in place to inform park visitors about the risks. While Swimmer’s Itch generally does not require medical treatment and is not contagious, it can be very uncomfortable.

Swimmer’s Itch symptoms include:

  • Tingling, burning or itching of the skin
  • Small reddish pimples
  • Small blisters

“To reduce exposure to and potential allergic reaction caused by Swimmer’s Itch we recommend to avoid wading or swimming in the lake,” Eric Mone with Deschutes County Environmental Health said.

According to Mone, if a person chooses to enter the water, he or she should immediately rub down very briskly with a towel after leaving the water.  Showering after leaving the water may also help.  More information about symptoms and treatment is available at the Centers for Disease Control, http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/swimmersitch/faqs.html.

The lake at Discovery Park was designed as an irrigation pond and storm water retention basin for the park and roads surrounding the lake.  The water comes from an on-site well as well as run-off from heavy rain storms.  While the Bend Park and Recreation District tests for E. coli and total coliform levels in the lake, there is not a viable method available to test for the presence of the organisms that cause Swimmer’s Itch.

“The lake at Discovery Park can be a reprieve from the heat, but it’s best to take precautions and be aware of risks resulting from swimming or playing in lakes, ponds or other water bodies,” said Michelle Healy, planning and park services director for the District.

For more information about Discovery Park, visit: http://www.bendparksandrec.org/parks/discovery-park/

Volunteers Needed for July 4th Pet Parade & Old Fashioned Festival in Downtown Bend & Drake Park

Celebrate the 4th of July by volunteering with Bend Park & Recreation District. Volunteers are needed to assist with our community’s biggest parade and holiday event – the July 4th Pet Parade and Old Fashioned Festival held in downtown Bend and Drake Park. Adult and teen volunteers are invited to join in to help with two of Bend’s longest running, free community events.

 

In the morning, volunteers are needed at the Pet Parade in downtown. Adult volunteers will monitor road closure barricade locations along the parade route from 8:30 to 11:30 am. Training is provided and most volunteers will be able to watch the parade.

 

At the July 4th Old Fashioned Festival in Drake Park, adult and teen volunteers are needed to assist with various games and activities including the photo booth, pie eating contest, “Flush a Duck” game and many more. Adult volunteers with kayaks are needed to be in the river to support the popular “Fish Fling” activity. Two-hour volunteer shifts are available from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm.

 

For more information or to volunteer, contact Kim Johnson, BPRD Volunteer Coordinator, at p. (541) 706-6127 or kim@bendparksandrec.org.

 

Teen Volunteers Needed to Help with Summer Youth Programs

Bend Park & Recreation District has many opportunities still available for teenage volunteers to help with youth recreation, fitness and swimming programs this summer. Volunteers help from mid-June through the end of August with opportunities such as the Junior Lifeguard and Swim Instructor Aide programs at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center, plus day camps, science, art, theater, cooking, fitness, nature and adventure activities for children. Programs are located at various facilities and parks around Bend.

 

Volunteers assist staff with program activities and interact with participants, while learning job related skills and gaining experience working with younger children. Teen volunteers must enjoy working with youth, be willing to get involved and take initiative, make a commitment and be able to create a positive, encouraging environment for all participants. Age requirement, necessary training, time commitment and schedule varies by program. Minimum age for teen volunteers is 12 years old.

 

Information about volunteering, the list of current opportunities and volunteer application form are available through the Bend Park & Recreation District website at www.bendparksandrec.org, click on the “volunteer” tab. A criminal history background check is processed for volunteers age 18 and over.

 

For more information, contact Kim Johnson, BPRD Volunteer Coordinator, p. (541) 706-6127, kim@bendparksandrec.org.

Farewell Bend Pedestrian Bridge Pile Driving Work to Begin June 6

Bend Park & Recreation District is notifying the community about upcoming pile driving as part of the new Farewell Bend pedestrian bridge construction in the Old Mill District. The driving will begin on Monday, June 6 and it is anticipated that all piles, consisting of six steel H-beams each, will be driven by Thursday, June 9.

Driven with a diesel hammer attached to a crane, the piles must be driven a minimum of 54 feet into the ground, or to full refusal as witnessed by the project’s geotechnical engineer. During this work, there will be an amount of loud noise resonating in the area and even possibly vibrating windows at times.

“It’s a familiar, loud “gong” sound,” said Brian Hudspeth, BPRD Development Manager. “The number of blows from the hammer is dependent on the type of ground. The blows typically start out fast with less noise and then get more intense and more rapid.”

Temporary bridge and trail closures and detours remain in place. Until the new bridge is completed in August, all bridge traffic is detoured to the Bill Healy, Columbia Street and Old Mill bridges. Intermittent closures of the river, approximately 100 feet upstream and downstream of the bridge, will occur during demolition of the old bridge and installation of the new bridge. For project maps, schedules and updates, visit the District website at www.bendparksandrec.org.

BPRD appreciates the community’s patience during construction. Questions regarding the bridge construction should be directed to Brian Hudspeth, BPRD Development Manager, at (541) 706-6137 or brian@bendparksandrec.org.

Bend Unified Recreational Soccer League Registration Now through June 5

It’s still spring, but youth fall soccer season is around the corner and now’s the time to sign up. The deadline to register for the 2016 Bend Unified Recreational Soccer League (BURSL) fall season is Sunday, June 5. Jointly run by the Bend Park and Recreation District and the Bend FC Timbers, the program is open to all boys and girls in Central Oregon entering first through eighth grade in the 2016-17 school year.

Last year, a record number of 1,780 kids played on 131 teams. “As of now, we have over 750 kids registered for this season,” said Rich Ekman, BPRD Sports Coordinator. “We’re anticipating high registration numbers again this year, so we’re encouraging parents to sign up now to ensure their child gets on a team.”

Teams are coached by trained volunteer coaches. Based by school and divided by grade, teams practice twice-a-week and play games on Saturdays. The league runs August 22 through October 29. Instruction, number of players on teams and game field sizes are age-appropriate and grow incrementally. All players receive their own uniform including jersey, shorts and socks.

For more information, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or contact Rich Ekman, BPRD Sports Coordinator at (541) 706-6126, rich@bendparksandrec.org, or Jen Davin, Bend FC Timbers at (970) 390-9932.

Local Kids Invited to Run, Jump & Throw at Bend Youth Track & Field Meet

Celebrating the spirit of track and field competition, the Bend Park & Recreation District is hosting the Bend Youth Track and Field Meet on Wednesday, June 8th at the Bend Senior High School track. Previously held as the Hershey’s Track and Field Games, the event is open to boys and girls born in 2002 through 2009 and free to all participants. The meet features 50, 100, 200 and 400 meter dashes, 800 meter and mile runs, the standing long jump and the turbo javelin throw. Held each spring for the past thirty-nine years, the event has hosted thousands of local children, including Olympic gold medal decathlete, Ashton Eaton.

Participants compete against their own gender in four age groups: 2002-2003, 2004-2005, 2006-2007 and 2008-2009. Competitors may pre-register at the BPRD office now through Tuesday, June 7th or register on-site, day of the event from 4:00 – 5:15 pm. A birth certificate is required at the time of registration.

Field events (long jump and turbo javelin) begin at 4:00 pm and running events begin at 5:30 pm. Participants may compete in up to three different events of their choice and can combine field and running events. Track spikes and/or shoes designed for spikes are not allowed.

Adult and high school-aged volunteers are needed to help with event activities. To volunteer, contact Kim Johnson, BPRD Volunteer Coordinator at (541) 706-6127.

For event information, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or contact Rich Ekman, BPRD Sports Coordinator at (541) 706-6126.

The Pavilion Offers Free Open Play Through Spring

Bend Park & Recreation District is extending free recreation opportunities at The Pavilion through the end of spring. Now through June 18, free Open Play sessions are offered weekdays and Saturdays and feature a variety of court sport opportunities and open space for recreating with family and friends.

“This spring is unique as The Pavilion is not as heavily scheduled with programs as it will be this summer and beyond,” said Matt Mercer, Director of Recreation. “It was the first time the facility transitioned from an ice rink to sport courts and there were a number of variables that we needed to carefully plan around. The transition went smoothly and the facility is available for the community to enjoy before summer programs begin.”

Open Play includes:

  • Court sports – basketball, volleyball, pickleball, futsal, indoor soccer and more.
  • Games – ping pong, cornhole, ladder toss, bocce ball and croquet.
  • Skatepark features – skateboards, scooters and rollerblades welcome. Helmets required.
  • Rock wall – coming in June.

Visitors are welcome to drop-in for all Open Play times. There is no fee or need to register.

Along with Open Play, there are fee-based pickleball and badminton programs being held at The Pavilion including Introduction to Pickleball, Drop-In Pickleball and Drop-In Badminton. No registration is required for the drop-in programs.

Schedules and additional information are available at www.bendparksandrec.org or (541) 389-7588. The Pavilion is located in southwest Bend at 1001 SW Bradbury Way, off Simpson Avenue.

Farewell Bend Pedestrian Bridge to Close for Replacement

The Bend Park & Recreation District will soon close the Farewell Bend pedestrian bridge over the Deschutes River between Farewell Bend and Riverbend Parks in preparation for its replacement. The bridge project general contractor, Deschutes Construction, is currently mobilizing on site and will take steps to close access to the bridge within the next week.

Temporary bridge and trail closures and detours will be in place. The current bridge should be removed in May and construction staging will occur on both sides of the river. Until the new bridge is completed in August, all bridge traffic will be detoured to the Bill Healy, Columbia Street and Old Mill bridges. Intermittent closures of the river, approximately 100 feet upstream and downstream of the bridge, will occur during demolition of the old bridge and installation of the new bridge. For project maps, schedules and updates, visit the District website at www.bendparksandrec.org.

The public is not allowed in the construction zone, but for those interested in viewing the bridge removal and installation, the best vantage point will be from the Farewell Bend Park boardwalk just downstream of the bridge location.

BPRD appreciates the community’s patience during construction. Questions regarding the bridge construction should be directed to Brian Hudspeth, BPRD Development Manager, at (541) 706-6137 or brian@bendparksandrec.org.

Teen Volunteers Needed to Help with Summer Youth Programs

Bend Park & Recreation District is currently seeking teenage volunteers to help with youth recreation, fitness and swimming programs this summer. Volunteers help from mid-June through the end of August with opportunities such as the Junior Lifeguard and Swim Instructor Aide programs at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center, plus day camps, preschool, science, art, theater, cooking, fitness, nature and adventure activities for children. Programs are located at various facilities and parks around Bend.

Volunteers assist staff with program activities and interact with participants, while learning job-related skills and gaining experience working with younger children. Teen volunteers must enjoy working with youth, be willing to get involved and take initiative, make a commitment and be able to create a positive, encouraging environment for all participants. Age requirement, necessary training, time commitment and schedule varies by program. Minimum age for teen volunteers is 12 years old.

Information about volunteering, the list of opportunities and volunteer application form are available through the Bend Park & Recreation District website at www.bendparksandrec.org, under the “volunteer” tab. A criminal history background check is processed for volunteers age 18 and over.

For more information, contact Kim Johnson, BPRD Volunteer Coordinator, p. (541) 706-6127, kim@bendparksandrec.org.

Ponderosa Park Skatepark Temporarily Closed For Maintenance

Bend Park & Recreation District’s Ponderosa Park skatepark at SE 15th Street and Wilson Avenue will be temporarily closed Wednesday, April 20 through Tuesday, April 26 due to a warranty maintenance project. The skatepark is expected to re-open on Wednesday, April 27.

During the closure, skaters are encouraged to use “Pondi” the old skatepark at the park’s northern end as well as the new skatepark features at The Pavilion. Use of the skatepark features and other amenities at The Pavilion are available for free during the facility’s “Free Play Week” Monday, April 18 through Friday, April 22, 9:30 am – 1:30 pm and 4:00 – 8:00 pm. The Pavilion is located at 1001 SW Bradbury Way. Skaters will need to wear their helmets.

Additional information on Ponderosa Park and The Pavilion can be found on the District’s website at www.bendparksandrec.org. Bend Park & Recreation District appreciates the community’s patience during the project.

The Pavilion Kicks Off the Non-Ice Season with Free Play Opportunities

April 18 – 22: “Free Play Week” & May 1: “Pavilion Summer Preview”

Bend Park & Recreation District is offering free recreation opportunities at The Pavilion to showcase the many activities that will be available for spring and summer.

The free opportunities start off with “Free Play Week,” Monday, April 18 through Friday, April 22. All ages are welcome to drop in and experience such activities as basketball, volleyball, pickleball, badminton and classic yard games. Skateboarders and scooter riders can try out new skatepark features. Skaters and riders need to bring their own board or scooter and helmet.

The “Free Play Week” schedule is:

  • 9:30 am – 1:30 pm: Pickleball, badminton, skatepark features and yard games
  • 4:00 – 8:30 pm: Basketball, volleyball, skatepark features and yard games

Topping off the free community fun is “The Pavilion Summer Preview” on Sunday, May 1, from noon to 3:00 pm. Highlighting the facility’s recreation activities, the event is open to all ages and will feature:

  • Court sports – basketball, volleyball, pickleball and more
  • Lawn games and cornhole
  • Skatepark features – bring your skateboard, scooter and helmet
  • Live music and facility tours
  • Summer program information and registration

There is no need to register and all activities are free. Food and refreshments will be available for purchase. Schedules and additional information are available at www.bendparksandrec.org or (541) 389-7588. The Pavilion is located in southwest Bend at 1001 SW Bradbury Way, off Simpson Avenue.

Recreational Softball League Meetings to be Held on April 6th

The Bend Park and Recreation District will be holding team organizational meetings for its recreational softball leagues on Wednesday, April 6. Just for recreational fun, these leagues are held from mid-April through mid-August and do not have an umpire.

The coed recreational league meeting will be at 6:00 p.m. and the men’s recreational league meeting will be at 6:45 p.m. Any team interested in joining the league must have a representative present at the meeting. The meetings will be held at the District Office, 799 SW Columbia Street. Teams will play a twelve-game schedule with all games to be played on weekday evenings at Pine Nursery Sports Complex and Skyline Sports Complex. Fee is $360/team. Team registration order and deadlines will be determined at the meeting. For more information, contact Rich Ekman, BPRD Sports Coordinator at ph. 541-706-6126, email: rich@bendparksandrec.org

The Pavilion Features $6 Open Skate on Sundays

To celebrate the end of its first ice season, Bend Park & Recreation District is offering special pricing for ice skating at The Pavilion on the next two Sundays, March 27 and April 3. On both days, open skate will be available for only $6 per person including skate rental (half price of the regular adult fees).

In operation since late December, The Pavilion will host ice skating through Sunday, April 3. After that, the ice surface will be removed and The Pavilion will shift its offerings to a variety of court sports and recreation programs. Ice skating and sports will return to The Pavilion in November.

No registration is needed for open skate sessions. Schedules, fees and additional information are available at www.bendparksandrec.org or (541) 389-7588. The Pavilion is located in southwest Bend at 1001 SW Bradbury Way, off Simpson Avenue.

Registration Opens March 21 for Summer Camps & Recreation Programs

Bend Park & Recreation District is ready for summer! Registration for summer recreation camps and programs begins Monday, March 21 allowing families to get a jump on planning for summer activities.

Camp and program descriptions and schedules are available for review online at www.bendparksandrec.org. Popular summer programs include day camps, outdoor and overnight camps, sports camps and clinics, arts and crafts classes, science camps, swimming lessons and leagues, adult and youth sports leagues, fitness classes and outdoor adventures.

The March 21 registration begins online at midnight, 12:00 am at https://register.bendparksandrec.org and in person during regular business hours at the District Office (open at 8:00 am), Juniper Swim & Fitness Center (open at 5:15 am), The Pavilion (open at 8:30 am) and Bend Senior Center (open at 7:30 am).

For additional information, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or call (541) 389-7275.

 

Farewell Bend Pedestrian Bridge to be Removed and Replaced

Temporary Closures Begin in April  ·  Community Open House on Friday, April 1

This spring and summer the Bend Park & Recreation District will be replacing the aging pedestrian bridge over the Deschutes River between Farewell Bend and Riverbend Parks. The public is invited to learn more about the project at a community open house on Friday, April 1 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the District office located at 799 SW Columbia Street.

During construction, temporary bridge and trail closures and detours will be in place. The current bridge should be removed in April or May, and construction staging will occur on both sides of the river. Until the new bridge is completed in August, all bridge traffic will be detoured to the Bill Healy, Columbia Street and the Old Mill bridges. Intermittent closures of the river, approximately 100 feet upstream and downstream of the bridge, will occur during demolition of the old bridge and installation of the new bridge. For project maps, schedules and updates, visit the District website at www.bendparksandrec.org.

Originally built by the area’s lumber mills, the current bridge has exceeded its life span and is in poor condition with failing support structures and decking. “Taking care of existing park and trail assets is a high priority of the community. As this bridge is a key link in the trail system and a popular crossing of the Deschutes River, it has been prioritized by the District’s Board of Directors to be replaced this year,” stated Jim Figurski, BPRD Landscape Architect.

Anticipated to be under construction in July and August, the new bridge will be 160 feet long and 12 feet wide and made of weathering steel. The bridge will be built off-site and is likely to be delivered in three sections. Once it is on-site at Riverbend Park, the bridge will be assembled and then hoisted into position by a large crane. Additionally, the trail approaches to the new bridge on both sides of the river will be lowered making the bridge more accessible.

The public is not allowed in the construction zone, but for those interested in viewing the bridge removal and installation, the best vantage point will be from the Farewell Bend Park boardwalk just downstream of the bridge location.

BPRD appreciates the community’s patience during construction. Questions regarding the bridge project should be directed to Jim Figurski, BPRD Landscape Architect, at (541) 706-6152 or jim@bendparksandrec.org.

Bend Park & Recreation District Offers Spring Break Camps & Activities

When Bend-LaPine School District children are out of school for spring break, Bend Park and Recreation District features opportunities for families to be active and engaged through a variety of recreational programs. Offered at several locations, days and times throughout March 19 – 27, spring break activities include creative arts, science, sports and play.

Spring break features expanded recreation schedules at two District facilities:

  • Open Skate at The Pavilion: two – three times daily;
  • Open Recreation Swim at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center: two times daily
  • Parent/Child Swim at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center: two times daily
  • Free Family Night at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center: Saturday, March 19

No registration is needed for drop-in skate and swim sessions. Schedules, fees and additional information are available at www.bendparksandrec.org.

For children who want to express their creativity, there are several programs to choose from including:

  • No School Days Art Play
  • KPOV Kids’ Radio Camp
  • Pop Star Camp and Spring Break Music Camp
  • Art classes

 

For kids with an interest in science, there are activities such as:

  • Science classes including Secret Agent Science, It’s Shocking,
    Fantastic Flight and Alternative Energy
  • Cascade Wilds – Spring Break
  • Nature Break
  • Bot Labs

The District also offers kids opportunities to get out and move whether in an organized sports or open play environment including:

  • Operation Recreation day camp
  • Skateboard camps
  • Fit Kids classes
  • All Sport Camps
  • Kids Agility Camp
  • Spring Break Track Camp

As always, children’s safety and care a priority in all District programs. All staff and volunteers receive specialized training and must pass thorough criminal background checks. For registration and additional program information, visit the district’s website at www.bendparksandrec.org or call (541) 389-7275.

Volunteer Lacrosse Coaches Needed

Bend Park & Recreation District is seeking adult volunteers to coach youth lacrosse for the 2016 Youth Lacrosse League. Program participants are boys and girls in first through eighth grade. Volunteer coaches are an essential part of the program, providing support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth. Volunteers must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players.

The youth lacrosse season runs April 4 to June 3. Teams practice and play games twice-weekly in the afternoon/evening during the nine-week season. Coaches volunteer approximately five hours per week. Program enrollment is at an all-time record high with over 670 youth participating. Several teams are in need of volunteer coaches.

Training and season-long support is provided. Volunteer coaches must attend a pre-season volunteer orientation/training. Safety is a top priority, so all coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal history background check, as well as concussion awareness training. Online volunteer application and background check available at www.bendparksandrec.org.

For more information contact:

Becky Rexford, Sports Program Coordinator

541-706-6120, beckyr@bendparksandrec.rog

 

Kim Johnson, Volunteer Coordinator

541-706-6127, kim@bendparksandrec.org

Hazardous Ponderosa Tree To Be Removed From Drake Park

For many years, Drake Park has been home to numerous trees providing shade and beauty to park users. Now, one of the park’s large ponderosa pines will need to be removed due to decay and potential safety hazard for park amenities and visitors. Tree removal is planned for Monday and Tuesday, March 14 – 15.

In April 2015, a large branch fell from the ninety-foot tall ponderosa pine tree located near the park’s restrooms onto a paver walkway below. After examination by a certified arborist, it was determined that the tree suffered from a structural defect and significant decay. As a result, other large branches are susceptible to falling.

“As people who care for nature and parks, removing an old growth tree from one of Bend’s most loved parks is never an easy decision, but the tree is dangerous,” states Sasha Sulia, BPRD Superintendent of Park Operations.

It is anticipated that the tree’s wood will be milled depending upon the quality.

889.223.0

Bend Whitewater Park to Open February 27

The Bend Whitewater Park will open on Saturday, February 27. Temporarily closed since October, construction crews have taken advantage of seasonal low water flows in the Deschutes River to make several improvements to the park.

Work included installation of monitoring system components and new wave-shaping bladders, creation of a more surfable wave feature, building of trails along the channels and sculpting in-channel pools to improve floater experience.

The park is made up of three in-river channels: A passageway channel for floating through the park, a whitewater channel for experienced whitewater paddlers, and a wildlife habitat channel, which is closed to people. The $9.7 million Bend Whitewater Park was funded by the 2012 bond measure passed by voters to invest in parks and recreation facilities, property taxes and $1.13 million in donations raised by the Bend Paddle Trail Alliance. All improvements done this winter were within the project budget.

“The current water conditions for the park’s opening tomorrow will be quite different than what people will experience next summer,” said Chelsea Schneider, Project Manager. “The flow and water levels in the river are very low this time of year and water is must be directed to the passageway channel for fish passage which then affects the whitewater channel conditions.” Schneider added, “There are whitewater play opportunities now, but later this spring and summer, higher flows will return and there will be more optimum conditions for the whitewater channel’s wave features and the passageway.”

 

Access to the whitewater park is from below the bridge, entering at the McKay Park beach or from Miller’s Landing Park. Featuring a spectating area, the new pedestrian bridge at the Bend Whitewater Park is also now open and is accessible from both sides of the river. Construction in the area will continue through this fall with the renovation of McKay Park and completion of the City of Bend sewer line project. Look for temporary closures and detours.

The Bend Whitewater Park website features information about park use and, together with the Bend Whitewater Park Facebook page, will have regular updates on river conditions. For additional information, visit www.bendwhitewaterpark.com

Youth Lacrosse Registration Deadline Approaching

Local youth are invited to participate in the Bend Park and Recreation District’s Youth Lacrosse League held April 4 to June 3. The league is open to boys and girls in first thru eighth grade and the deadline to register is Friday, March 4.  Registration is available online at www.bendparksandrec.org or at District facilities.

Focusing on the fun and excitement of lacrosse, the league promotes physical fitness and teaches youth sportsmanship lessons about teamwork and fair play as well as basic lacrosse fundamentals and game play. Teams practice twice a week and play an eight-game schedule.

Helmets (for boys), goggles (for girls), sticks, mouth guards and game jerseys are provided.  Participants in the boys’ league need to provide their own gloves, shoulder pads and elbow pads. The registration fee is $75 for in-district residents and $90 for those that live outside the District boundaries.  Financial assistance is available for registration and equipment needs.

The league also offers opportunities for adults as volunteer coaches. Coaches provide support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth. All volunteer coaches must complete an application, background check, take a concussion training course, enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players.

For more information contact Rich Ekman, Sports Program Coordinator at (541) 706-6126 or rich@bendparksandrec.org.

BPRD PSA: Fire Fuels Reduction Project Scheduled at Shevlin Park

Released: February 5, 2016

Starting on February 9, Bend Park and Recreation District will be implementing a wildfire fuels reduction project on 37 acres in Shevlin Park. To be conducted on the park’s east side and south of Shevlin Park Road, the work is estimated to take two weeks to complete. No closures are anticipated, but signs will be located at area trailheads notifying users of the work.

“Winter is a great time to be proactive with wildfire prevention,” stated Sasha Sulia, Superintendent of Park Operations at Bend Park and Recreation District. “It’s important we prepare ahead of fire season and properly manage Shevlin Park to reduce the risk of wildfires and increase wildfire protection to the adjacent land and homeowners. With low temperatures and high moisture content, now is a perfect season for fire fuel reduction.”

Supported by Project Wildfire, the project is contracted with Cascade Brush Removal and includes brush and shrub mowing as well as some small tree removal.

“The desired condition of the park is a mosaic landscape with open areas that favor native bunch grasses and forbs while still retaining patches of shrubs for wildlife,” said Sulia. “Over time, the fire fuels reduction work will create a healthier, more diverse, fire-resilient plant community.”

For additional information on fire fuel reduction at Bend Park and Recreation District, contact Sasha Sulia, Superintendent of Park Operations at (541) 706-6203.

Youth Basketball Referees Needed

The Bend Park and Recreation District is looking for referees to officiate games for the 2016 Youth Basketball League for third through fifth grade boys and girls. Games are played at Bend area middle schools on Saturdays, January 16 through March 5.

Potential applicants must enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging environment.  Although prior referee experience is not required, all referees must have sound basketball knowledge, a clean criminal background and pass a pre-employment drug screen. As an essential part of the program, referees must be at least 15 years of age. Pay rate is $10 per game.

Anyone interested must attend a mandatory meeting on Wednesday, January 6 at 7:00 pm at Bend Park & Recreation District Office, 799 SW Columbia St.

For more information, contact Rich Ekman, Sports Program Coordinator at rich@bendparksandrec.org  or (541) 706-6126.

The Pavilion to Open December 28

Bend Park and Recreation District announces The Pavilion, the community’s new ice rink and recreation facility, will open to the public on Monday, December 28.

“We’re excited to invite the community to skate during the holiday break and get ice skating, hockey and curling programs underway,” said Matt Mercer, Director of Recreation. Open skate sessions and adult hockey begin on December 28; adult curling begins January 3. All other registration programs begin the first week of January.

“The Pavilion has been a long time coming with many people working for the past decade to bring this facility to reality,” added Mercer. “The community supported this new recreation center through the 2012 bond measure and everyone involved is pleased to open the doors for all to enjoy for generations to come.”

On Sunday, December 27, staff training will be held at The Pavilion and will include having staff on the ice. Although it may appear open, The Pavilion will be closed to the public during this training so that staff can conduct a final run-through of facility systems and procedures.

The holiday skate schedule features extended public sessions for December 28 through January 3 and is as follows:

  • Monday, December 28 12:00 – 8:00 pm                                 Open Skate
  • Tuesday, December 29                 12:00 – 6:15 pm                                 Open Skate
  • Wednesday, December 30 12:00 – 8:00 pm                                 Open Skate
  • Thursday, December 31 12:00 – 10:00 pm                                              Open Skate
  • Friday, January 1 12:00 – 8:00 pm                                 Open Skate
  • Saturday, January 2 12:00 – 3:45 pm / 6:30 – 10:00 pm              Open Skate
  • Sunday, January 3 11:00 am – 4:00 pm                                         Open Skate

The full holiday schedule is available online at www.bendparksandrec.org.

 

Single visit admission fees are:

  • Adults (19-59)                 $9.00
  • Older Adults (60-79) $8.00
  • Youth (3-18) /
    Honored Citizens (80+) $7.00

Patrons may rent skates for $3.00 per person or bring their own skates. Discounted 10-visit admission passes and 10-skate rental passes are available.

The Pavilion’s regular schedule runs January 4 through March 27 and is available online at www.bendparksandrec.org. Drop-in skate sessions include Open Skate, Flex Skate, Family Skate, Parent-Tot Skate, Fitness Skate as well as premium sessions. Premium sessions provide specialized ice use times with limited capacity and include Stick Time, Pick-up Hockey and Curling Time. A $3.00 add-on fee to regular admission applies for these sessions. A discounted 10-visit premium pass is also available.

“It’s exciting to get the community out on the ice,” said Mercer. “We look forward to skating with you this inaugural season.”

Additional information on The Pavilion including schedules, hours, fees and programs is available online at www.bendparksandrec.org.

 

Winter/Spring 2016 Recreation Program Registration Begins December 7th

Winter/Spring 2016 registration for Bend Park & Recreation District recreation programs begins Monday, December 7, both online and in person. Programs include youth and adult sports, skating, swimming, fitness, enrichment, outdoor, adapted and senior activities. Online program descriptions are available for preview at www.bendparksandrec.org. Those needing assistance can register in person at the District office (799 SW Columbia Street), Juniper Swim & Fitness Center (800 NE 6th Street) or the Bend Senior Center (1600 SE Reed Market Rd.) during regular hours. For additional information, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or call (541) 389-7275.

BPRD PSA: Juniper Swim & Fitness Center to Host Kids’ Triathlon on August 23rd

Released: July 30, 2015

Youth ages 4 through 15 years old are invited to swim, bike and run at the Juniper Swim & Fitness Center Kids’ Triathlon, Sunday, August 23rd at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center and Juniper Park in northeast Bend. Consisting of all three traditional triathlon activities of swimming, biking and running, the event will offer varying race lengths for different age groups:
•    4  – 6 years old:  25 yard swim, 1/3 mile bike and 400 yard run
•    7 – 9 years old:  50 yard swim, 1 mile bike and 800 yard run
•    10 – 12 years old:  100 yard swim, 1.5 mile bike and 1 mile run
•    13 – 15 years old:  200 yard swim, 2 mile bike and 1.5 mile run

Non-timed, the triathlon focuses on kids having fun in a safe and encouraging environment. Swimming will be held in the center’s supervised pool and biking and running courses will be in Juniper Park.

Participants are encouraged to pre-register online at register.bendparksandrec.org, now through Saturday, August 22nd at 12:00 pm, noon. Registrations are limited to 100 participants. If available, day-of-event registration will be open on-site from 7:30 am to 8:15 am. Participant fee is $25 for in-district residents and $30 for out-of-district residents. Event t-shirts are included with registration.

The event kicks off with a mandatory all-athlete meeting at 9:00 am followed by the different age categories racing in stages beginning at 9:30 am. The event continues until 1:00 pm and includes vendor booths on site. The triathlon is offered by Bend Park & Recreation District and Laughing Dog Triathlon and sponsored by Compass Physical Therapy.

For additional information and to register, visit register.bendparksandrec.org or call (541) 389-7665.

District Cautions Use of Discovery Park Irrigation Lake

Since Discovery Park opened to the public in early June people have been drawn to the park’s irrigation lake for water play.  “When the lake was first filled, it was clear and the weather hot” states Don Horton, Executive Director. “It attracted a lot of people.” Park District rules do not forbid water play in the lake, but the Park District wants to alert people that continued heat, plant and algae growth, and the introduction of people into the water could bring about water quality issues.

Because of heavy human use, the Park District has called upon the help of Deschutes County Health Department and Umpqua Research Company to test the water on a weekly basis for E. Coli and total Coliform.  Should testing indicate a need to close the lake, signage will be posted.  “Though the District is having the water tested it is not being tested for all water related diseases. People recreating in the lake should do so knowing that the lake was built for irrigation and the water is not potable” states Pat Erwert, Park Services Director.

The lake was designed as an irrigation pond and storm water retention basin for the park and roads surrounding the lake.  The water comes from an on-site well as well as run-off from heavy rain storms.  “People should be aware that the water is untreated and if they choose to recreate in it, to do so at their own risk” stated Horton.

The beach, children’s natural play structure and ‘river maker’ playground were designed for children to enjoy explorative play.  A fishing platform (resembling a dock) was built but due to recent popularity of the park, fish have not been introduced. Fishing is not allowed at this time.  Once the vegetation has matured, the lake will better resemble a natural pond such as the fishing ponds at Pine Nursery and Shevlin Parks.

 

Tips for Pet Safety in Warm Temperatures at 4th of July Pet Parade

While tradition calls for fun at the 4th of July Pet Parade, precautions are necessary in temperatures forecasted to be over 90 degrees on the holiday. The parade host Bend Park & Recreation District and the Humane Society of Central Oregon want parade participants’ pets to remain healthy and safe in the warm temperature. Be prepared to adapt your parade plans. Some considerations include bringing a stuffed animal instead, using a wagon to pull your pet or, if needed, leaving the parade route if your pet demonstrates intolerance towards the heat.

“Warm weather can bring a danger to our pets that we do not always consider. Heat strokes are a common occurrence here in Central Oregon where we have numerous days above 90 degrees,” said Dr. Chad Moles, DVM, of Blue Sky Veterinary Clinic in Bend.

“Dogs’ main cooling mechanism is through respiration/panting and they do not handle heat as well as humans do.  Inadequate shade and/or hydration on a hot day can put even the healthiest pet at risk for overheating,” said Dr. Moles. Senior, obese, short muzzled dogs (Pugs, Bulldogs, Boxers, etc.) and long-haired breeds are discouraged in extreme heat.

Another concern in high temperatures is hot asphalt which can cause damage to paw pads. A recent asphalt temperature was 140 degrees with ambient temperature of 86 degrees.

Tips for keeping your pet comfortable at the Pet Parade include:

  • Before and after the parade, find a cool, shaded place to rest.
  • Do not arrive too early: staging begins at 9:00 am; the parade starts at 10:00 am.
  • Bring plenty of cool water for you and your pet. Water will be available at parade staging area and en route – just look for the orange flags.
  • Allow dogs to cool off in the water pools at the staging area.
  • Consider using booties to prevent paw injuries and tar from adhering to paw pads.
  • Get creative and place your pet in a shaded, decorated stroller or wagon to keep them off of the hot asphalt.
  • Watch for signs of your pet’s paw pads overheating or soreness – picking-up paws, seeking shade and avoiding walking by sitting or lying down.
  • Do not leave your pet in the car, not even for a minute.
  • Learn to recognize the signs of heat stroke: Faster, heavier panting; excessive thirst and/or drooling with hanging strands of saliva; whining or signs of agitation; decreased responsiveness; glassy eyes; increased pulse/ heartbeat; elevated body temperature and staggering, weakness, collapse, seizures and/or unconsciousness.
  • If your pet shows heat-related symptoms, immediately go to the First Aid booth at the staging area, a nearby shaded area or a dog-friendly business that may let your dog cool in the air conditioned store so you can assess your pet’s condition. Before, during and after the parade, Dr. Moles will be on site at the Information/First Aid booth and available to assist pets.

If you think your pet will be challenged by warm temperatures, BPRD and the Humane Society of Central Oregon encourage you to leave your pet at home.

Should you need any emergency veterinary services over the holiday weekend, the Animal Emergency of Central Oregon in Bend will be open 24 hours a day from 5:00 pm on Friday, July 3rd to 8:00 am on Monday, July 6th. The clinic’s phone number is (541) 385-9110.

For additional information on the Pet Parade, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or call Bend Park & Recreation District at (541) 389-7275.

 

Celebrate the Opening of Discovery Park, Bend’s Newest Community Park, on July 16th

The community is invited to celebrate the opening Discovery Park, Bend Park & Recreation District’s newest community park, on Thursday, July 16th at 4:30 pm. The park is located in the NorthWest Crossing neighborhood at 1315 NW Discovery Park Drive, west of Mt. Washington Drive. The celebration is free to all and will feature live music and games at 4:30 pm and a presentation at 5:15 pm followed by ice cream treats, music and games.

Open since June 2nd, Discovery Park features approximately 12 acres of developed park land, a 3-acre irrigation lake and about 20 acres of open space. Park amenities include a picnic shelter, children’s natural play area, off-leash dog park, open lawns and paved trails. Discovery Trail runs through the park, creating a link between the West Bend Trail to the south and Shevlin Park to the north. The park was jointly developed by the District and NorthWest Crossing’s developer, West Bend Properties, for the benefit of all residents of the District.

For additional information on Discovery Park, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or contact the Bend Park & Recreation District office at (541) 389-7275.

Bend Senior Center to Celebrate National Senior Health & Fitness Day

Focusing on the health and wellness of older adults, the Bend Senior Center is celebrating the 22nd National Senior Health & Fitness Day on Wednesday, May 27th. More than 100,000 older adults throughout the U.S. participate in the day’s activities at over 1,000 community organizations committed to helping older Americans stay healthy and fit.

As part of the nationwide events, a free health resource fair will be hosted at the Bend Senior Center from 9:00 to 11:30 am. Visitors can take advantage of healthcare information, health screenings, nutritious food samples and community resources information.

The Bend Senior Center is located at 1600 SE Reed Market Rd. For additional information, call (541) 388-1133 or visit www.bendparksandrec.org.

Local Kids Invited to Run, Jump & Throw at Bend Youth Track & Field Meet

Celebrating the spirit of track and field competition, the Bend Park & Recreation District is hosting the Bend Youth Track and Field Meet on Wednesday, May 27th at the Bend Senior High School track. Previously held as the Hershey’s Track and Field Games, the event is open to boys and girls born in 2001 through 2008 and free to all participants. The meet features 50, 100, 200 and 400 meter dashes, 800 and 1500 meter runs, the standing long jump and the turbo javelin. Held each spring for the past thirty-eight years, the event has hosted thousands of local children, even Olympic gold medal decathlete, Ashton Eaton.

Participants compete against their own gender in four age groups: 2001-2002, 2003-2004, 2005-2006 and 2007-2008. Competitors may pre-register at the BPRD office now through Tuesday, May 26th or register on-site at the event from 4:00 – 5:15 pm on May 27th. A birth certificate is required at the time of registration.

Field events (long jump and turbo javelin) begin at 4:00 pm and running events begin at 5:30 pm. Participants may compete in up to three different events of their choice and can combine field and running events. Track spikes and/or shoes designed for spikes are not allowed.

Adult and high school age volunteers are needed to help with event activities. To volunteer, contact Kim Johnson, BPRD Volunteer Coordinator at (541) 706-6127.

For event information, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or contact Rich Ekman, BPRD Sports Coordinator at (541) 706-6126.

Bend Senior Center Remodeling To Begin

Beginning today, Monday, April 27th, preparations are underway for modest remodeling work at the Bend Senior Center. Projects include re-purposing spaces, updating interior finishes and minor mechanical system improvements. Construction is scheduled to begin on Monday, May 4th and expected to continue through mid-June.

Affected spaces are on the south side of the building and include the computer room, the fitness center and the billards and game room. During the construction, billards and weight training will not be available. Visitors can expect some programs to be relocated in the facility but all other programs and activities will be held as regularly scheduled. For fitness center use, Bend Senior Center pass holders may use their pass for the fitness center at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center.

Owned and operated by Bend Park & Recreation District, the Bend Senior Center is located at 1600 SE Reed Market Rd, directly east of 15th Street. For additional information and schedules, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or call (541) 389-7275.

Let’s Go Fishing with Bend Park & Recreation

Its spring – flowers are blooming, the air is warming and the fish are jumpin’! Youth and adults alike are invited to welcome this fishing season with Bend Park & Recreation District with both fishing ponds and scheduled activities for the public.

Fishing programs are designed to get both youth and adults into the swing of baiting, casting and angling for this season’s perfect catch. The following fishing programs are offered:

Learn to Fish – FREE
Saturday, May 16: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Location: Pine Nursery Park
Ages: 17 & under
Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife staff and volunteers help youth learn to fish with loaner rods, reels and tackle. Juvenile angling license required for ages 14 – 17. All state angling regulations apply. Free.

Annual Jason Freiboth Kids’ Fishing Clinic
Wednesday, May 20: 6:15 – 8:00 pm
Location: Shevlin Park
Ages: 5 – 11
A springtime favorite! Volunteers and donated equipment are available to help kids and families learn about fishing. A parent or adult must participate with the child. Fee: $4 in-district, $5 out-of-district / Program: 203620

Fly Fishing Camp
Monday, June 15 – Wednesday, June 17: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm
Location: Shevlin Park
Ages: 10 – 14
The Central Oregon Fly Fishers Club will teach various fly casts, techniques and strategies, fly tying and safe wading. Fee: $49 in-district, $59 out-of-district / Program: 203625.

Fly Casting for Beginners
Mondays and Wednesdays, May 18 – June 3: 6:30 – 8:30 pm
Sunday, June 7: 3:00 – 7:00 pm
Location: Hollinshead Barn, Pine Nursery Park & Upper Deschutes River
Ages: All Adults
Designed for novice fly casters. Includes knots, entomology, fly selection, learning to read water and casting practice. If needed, equipment will be provided.
Fee: $72 in-district, $86 out-of-district / Program: 208939

Fly Fishing 101
Thursdays and/or Saturdays, May – September, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Location: Confluence Fly Shop
Ages: 12 & up
Covers all the basics of fly fishing including equipment, casting and flies. Equipment provided. Fee: $30 in-district, $36 out-of-district / Program: 208946

Registration for all programs is available at www.bendparksandrec.org. Space is limited. For additional information on BPRD fishing programs, contact Greg Brady, BPRD Sports Coordinator at (541) 706-6124.

In addition to scheduled activities, the District features fishing ponds at Pine Nursery and Shevlin Parks that are stocked by Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife. Shevlin Park pond features rainbow trout and is open to youth, 17 years and under. At Pine Nursery Park, the pond is open to all ages and stocked with rainbow trout, blue gills and bass. Current regulations at both ponds allow for a limit of two fish per day, eight inch minimum length. For Deschutes River fishing, access is available at several parks including Drake, Farewell Bend, First Street Rapids, Miller’s Landing, Pacific, Pioneer, Riverbend and Sawyer Parks. Both bait and fly fishing is allowed all year with a limit of two trout per day, eight inch minimum length. All state angling licenses and regulations apply at all locations. Additional information on fishing and stocking in the region is available at ODFW’s website at http://www.dfw.state.or.us/rr/central/.

 

Bend Park & Recreation District Offers Free “Spring Thaw” Fitness Events

The community is invited to get active this spring with a week-and-a-half of free fitness events, Monday, April 20th through Thursday, April 30th at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center  and local parks. The various fitness clinics and classes provide a way for newcomers and regular patrons alike to try new classes, learn new techniques and discover Bend Park & Recreation District’s fitness and wellness amenities and offerings for themselves.

The “Spring Thaw Fitness” schedule is as follows:
Monday April 20:
8:15-9:00 am         Foundations Training

Tuesday April 21:
7:15-7:50 am         HIIT Training
5:30-6:30 pm         Prenatal Yoga
6:15-7:00 pm         Get Started in Foam Rolling

Wednesday April 22:
9:00-10:00 am         Ask A PT – call to schedule apt.
11:00-11:50 am        Get Started in Yoga
6:30-7:15 pm         Get Started in Triathlon Training

Thursday April 23:
10:00-11:00 am     Nordic Walking w/Poles
10:30-11:15 am     Baby & Me Cycle
11:30 am-12:00 pm     Get Started in Cycle

Friday April 24:
10:15-11:15 am     Get Started in Weight Training
1:30-2:20 pm         Get Started in Water Running
Saturday April 25:
9:30-10:45 am         Get Started in Zumba
Sunday April 26:
4:00-5:00 pm         Thrive and Revive – Be a Heathier You!

Monday April 27:
1:30-2:20 pm         Get Started in Water Running
4:00-5:20 pm         Get Started in Zumba/Bliss
4:00-5:30 pm        Fit Kids Dance Party!
5:30-6:15 pm     Alleviate Allergy Symptoms with Essential Oils

Tuesday April 28:
8:00-9:00 am        Get Stated in Pilates
9:30-10:30 am         New Moms on the Move
10:30-11:30 am        Nordic Walking w/Poles
11:00-11:45 am        Get Started in Foam Rolling
4:30-5:15 pm        Strong and Supple Feet
6:40-7:30 pm         Get Started in TRX

Wednesday April 29:
5:00-6:00 pm         Ask A PT – call to schedule
5:45-6:30 pm        Learn your Training Zones
6:35-7:45 pm         Get Started in Kundalini Yoga

Thursday April 30:
12:00-1:00 pm        Get Started in Prenatal Yoga
5:45-6:30 pm        Foundations Training

All programs are provided at no-cost. No registration or pass is required; patrons may simply drop-in. For locations, additional program information and schedules, visit the Juniper Swim & Fitness Center’s specialty fitness schedule page at /Juniper_Swim__Fitness/schedules/Specialty-Fitness/ or call (541) 389-7665.

 

Be Smart! Start Now, Swim by Summer at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center

Spring is here and Bend Park & Recreation District’s Juniper Swim & Fitness Center staff are encouraging people to think about warm, summer days and swimming.

“Look ahead to summer now and consider the fun, playful adventures, but also think about swimming skills and water safety,” said Bob Smith, JSFC Facility Manager. “Be smart and be prepared – be sure the whole family knows how to swim. If you start now, you’ll all be swimming by summer.”

“Early spring is an optimum time for swim lessons,” said Ann Story, JSFC Aquatic Coordinator. “Starting now allows plenty of time to establish fundamental concepts, strokes and skills. It takes beginners of all ages about 12-15 weeks of lessons to develop the basics so that they can swim with confidence.” Story says it’s that foundation that lets swimmers get the most out of warm weather trips to area lakes and rivers or Juniper Swim & Fitness Center’s pools and play area.

JSFC staff encourages swimmers to start at a young age but say it’s never too late to learn. Based on progressive-learning, the lessons are specially-designed for infants/toddlers as young as 6 months, preschoolers, youth and adults alike. There is even a “Swim Without Fear” class for adults who are uncomfortable in the water.

“No matter their skill level, we welcome people to come learn,” said Story. With a warm water pool and friendly, experienced instructors, Story said the JSFC staff works hard to make learning to swim easy and inviting. “We love teaching swimmers and then seeing them regularly swim at Juniper,” said Story. “It’s like watching ‘our kids’ grow.”

Swim lesson registration is currently available. The next five-week session is March 30th through April 4th with a variety of levels, age groups, days and times available. For convenience, evening classes are offered for adults. A free swim lesson assessment is available to determine appropriate level. In all programs, participants learn basic strokes and water safety, giving plenty of time to establish confidence for those water-filled, summer adventures ahead.

Registration information is available online at www.juniperswimandfitness.com or at Juniper Swim & Fitness Center at 800 NE 6th Street. For more information, call (541) 389-7665 (POOL).

Volunteer Lacrosse Coaches Needed

Bend Park & Recreation District is seeking adult volunteers to coach lacrosse for the 2015 Youth Lacrosse League. Program participants are boys and girls in first through eighth grade. Volunteer coaches are an essential part of the league, providing support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth. Volunteers must enjoy working with kids and be able to create a positive, encouraging recreational environment for all players.

The lacrosse season runs March 30th to May 29th. Teams practice and play games twice-a-week in the afternoon/evening during the nine-week season. Coaches volunteer approximately five hours per week. Program enrollment is at an all-time record high with over 600 youth participating. Several teams are in need of volunteer coaches.

Training and season long support is provided. Volunteer coaches must attend a pre-season volunteer orientation/training. Safety is a top priority, so all coaches must complete a volunteer application and criminal history background check as well as online concussion awareness training. Online volunteer application and background check available at www.bendparksandrec.org.

For more information contact:
Rich Ekman, Sports Program Coordinator
(541) 706-6126, rich@bendparksandrec.rog

Kim Johnson, Volunteer Coordinator
(541) 706-6127, kim@bendparksandrec.org

 

Youth Lacrosse Registration Deadline Approaching

Local youth are invited to participate in the Bend Park and Recreation District’s Youth Lacrosse League held March 30th to May 29th. The league is open to boys and girls in 1st through 8th grade and the deadline to register is Sunday, March 1st.  The registration fee is $75 for in-district residents and $90 for those that live outside the District boundaries.  Registration is available online at www.bendparksandrec.org or at District facilities.

Focusing on the fun and excitement of lacrosse, the league promotes physical fitness and teaches youth sportsmanship lessons about teamwork and fair play as well as basic lacrosse fundamentals and game play. Teams practice twice a week and play an eight-game schedule.

Helmets (for boys), goggles (for girls), sticks, mouth guards and game jerseys are provided. Participants in the boys’ league need to provide their own gloves, shoulder pads and elbow pads. Financial assistance is available for registration and equipment needs.

The league also offers opportunities for adults as volunteer coaches. Coaches provide support with program logistics, coaching and mentoring youth. All volunteers must complete an application and background check, enjoy working with youth and be able to create a positive, encouraging environment for all players.

For more information, contact Rich Ekman, Sports Program Coordinator at (541) 706-6126 orrich@bendparksandrec.org.

Pioneer Park Closed Due to Fallen Trees

Park Users Asked to Use Caution

Due to fallen trees, Bend Park and Recreation District has closed Pioneer Park in Northwest Bend. The closure is effective immediately until high winds and gusts subside and the fallen trees and debris can be removed.

“We ask that park patrons use caution during this storm and avoid areas with large trees. During high winds, it is not uncommon for trees and limbs to come down in parks and on trails,” said Pat Erwert, Park Services Director. Erwert noted that it is possible that other parks could close without notice due to weather-caused damage and dangers.

Future access to Pioneer Park, once re-opened, will be available online at www.bendparksandrec.org or by contacting the District office at (541) 389-7275.

 

BPRD Board of Directors Appoint New Board & New Budget Committee Members

The Bend Park & Recreation District Board of Directors appointed new board and budget committee members at their Tuesday, February 3rd meeting.

Nathan Hovekamp was selected as the newest board member to fill a vacancy created by Scott Asla’s resignation in December. Hovekamp will serve until June 30, 2015. The seat is open for election in May to complete the remaining two years of the term through June 30, 2017.

Hovekamp and his wife have lived in Bend for 18 years and have two sons. He has a PhD in Education and is a naturalist and educator. Hovekamp has served on the Bend Planning Commission and Bend LaPine School Board and now serves on the Central Oregon LandWatch board. Most recently, Hovekamp served on the Bend Park and Recreation District’s Citizen Advisory Committee for Riley Ranch Nature Reserve during which he “got a glimpse of the inclusive spirit of BPRD public processes and the positive culture of the organization.” In his application, Hovekamp stated that he would like to “contribute to the award-winning excellence that is the hallmark of Bend Park and Recreation.”

Hovekamp was selected from a field of ten applicants. Board members praised the candidates for their high levels of experience and personal connections to the community.

The other appointment during the meeting was that of Thomas Fisher to the District’s Budget Committee. Per his application, Fisher has more than thirty years in public and private education and was Director of Athletics at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a member of the City of Port Orange, Florida Parks & Recreation Board. His previous experience includes budget oversight and approval. Fisher will serve a three-year term on the committee.

For additional information on the Board of Directors and/or Budget Committee, visit www.bendparksandrec.org or contact Vanessa De Moe, Assistant to the Executive Director at (541) 706-6151 or vanessa@bendparksandrec.org.

 

BPRD Board of Directors Seeks Candidates for Board Vacancy

The Bend Park & Recreation District Board of Directors is currently seeking candidates to fill a vacant board position until June 30, 2015. It is anticipated the board will appoint the new board member at their Tuesday, February 3, 2015 meeting. The vacancy was created by Scott Asla’s resignation in December.

The Board is composed of five members who serve four-year terms. Each member represents the District at-large rather than separate zones. This is a volunteer position and does not receive compensation.

To be considered for the board position, a candidate must:
•    Reside within the District boundaries.
•    Be a registered voter.
•    Be able to attend regularly scheduled board meetings held the first and third Tuesday of each month and other periodic meetings.
•    Be willing to run for the seat in the May 2015 election for the term ending June 30, 2017.

To apply, candidates are to submit a letter of interest and responses to Candidate Questions to:
Assistant to the Executive Director, Bend Park & Recreation District, 799 SW Columbia, Bend, OR 97702
or email board@bendparksandrec.org.

The Board of Directors Candidate Questions are available here (PDF).

The application deadline is Friday, January 23, 2015. The board anticipates selecting the final candidate on Tuesday, February 3, 2015 with the candidate being seated on February 17, 2015.

For additional information, contact Vanessa DeMoe, Assistant to the Executive Director at (541) 706-6151 orVanessa@bendparksandrec.org.