The newly refurbished Jersey City Armory, located on Montgomery Street near McGinley Square, will be the home of several recreational activities, mostly for children. The old National Guard headquarters recently received a $4 million facelift, complete with a state-of-the-art running track, a new basketball court, and several other amenities. Several track and field meets have already been held there, and there is much more to come.
As the weather warms, Liberty National Golf Course, currently under construction near Jersey City's Liberty State Park, will draw closer to a grand opening date. The exclusive 18-hole USGA-approved golf course would be a sight for the sore eyes of plenty of local links enthusiasts.
But avid golfers will be happy to know that the old Lincoln Park Driving Range, located on the southern side of Route 440 and Lincoln Park, has been purchased by the County of Hudson and will soon be operating under the guidance of the Hudson County Parks Department. This means that any golfer who needs to work on his or her swing before hitting the links can do so in a local setting, probably with better rates than other privately owned driving ranges.
Tennis enthusiasts in Jersey City could check out the courts inside the spacious Lincoln Park, off of Routes 1&9 near Duncan Avenue. The courts are in constant use, and tennis pros are on hand during the warmer months to provide instruction at reasonable rates. The tennis courts in Lincoln Park are also state-of-the-art, so they should receive consideration from tennis fans.
Throughout the spring and summer months, there are a host of different recreational softball leagues at different sites around the city. Jersey City-owned Mary Benson Park, Franco Field and Caven Point's Softball Field are constantly used for leagues. Lincoln Park is also a location for several different leagues as well. Many of these leagues are long established, but there is always room for another team or even a player.
The Garden State Games, New Jersey's largest amateur athletic competition, annually holds some of its events in Jersey City, such as track and field, tennis and basketball. The GSG action begins in June; some events take place in July.
For road runners, there are several popular road races that take place in the spring months in Jersey City, in particular the Liberty Challenge Run in May. But when the temperatures rise, road races tend to slack off for a lack of participation.
For the younger set, Little League baseball and softball are very popular activities during the spring and early summer months. Jersey City has several long-standing Little Leagues, like Roberto Clemente Little League, taking place in areas including Downtown, Pershing Field, and Washington Park in the Heights; College Little League inside Country Village in the Greenville section; and Lincoln Park Little League, which is housed inside Lincoln Park.
Other standing leagues such as Greenville American offer Cal Ripken Bambino Baseball and Softball Leagues, played at Caven Point.
For spectators, there are two events of note to look for. The HCIAA Baseball and Softball Championships are held on the third Saturday of May at Caven Point, as Hudson County crowns its annual champions in baseball and softball in two divisions. The association calls its championship day "Super Saturday," and it's definitely that, filled with excitement for all.
In June, the Jersey City Recreation Summer League tips off with games being held at P.S. 28 (Christa McAuliffe) School in the Heights, although there has been talk of moving the league to the Armory for 2006. All the top high school basketball teams in Hudson County - and from around the state - converge on Jersey City for nightly hoop action during the summer months.
All in all, there is something for everyone in terms of sports in Jersey City during the spring and summer. Make sure to check it all out.
For more information about sporting events in Jersey City, call (201) 547-4582 or (201) 547-5003.