"This year's program is especially exciting because many of the activities will take place on our Weehawken Waterfront Recreation/Park Complex," said Weehawken Mayor Richard F. Turner. "There are several new opportunities this year. For the first full summer, we have our Stevens [Institute of Technology] program where residents can take advantage of their facilities and their weight rooms."
Mayor Turner said that the town is using the best facilities available for the various programs - tennis is already off to a great start.
"Our recreation program is designed for all age groups, so there's something for everybody," explained Turner, adding that the town is thrilled to be able to offer all of the programs, which he said comprises an outstanding summer program among municipalities in the state. "There's no excuse for anybody to be bored in Weehawken this summer."
The program is exclusively for Weehawken residents. All outdoor activities will be cancelled when it is raining.
Outdoor sports a-plenty
There's plenty of outdoor excitement for kids and adults alike.
Louisa and Gregory parks are hosting activities for kids including badminton on Mondays, kickball and magic tennis on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and wiffleball on Fridays. There's also free play on Thursdays. All parks are hosting board games. Kids can beat the heat running through the sprinklers. Or get creative with arts and crafts Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. Most park activities run through Aug. 22.
The parks are also having Free Lunch for Children weekdays at noon until Aug. 15.
Eager to become the next Tiger Woods? Beginner golf lessons will be given for ages 8 to 12 on Wednesday mornings at the Edgewater Driving Range, where special chipping and putting instruction will be given on July 22, 24, 29, and 31. Parents must accompany children and golf clubs are in limited supply.
Children's tennis lessons will be held Mondays and Fridays through Aug. 15 at the Waterfront Complex.
Twilight soccer is another new program that runs 7 to 10 p.m. at the Waterfront Complex through Aug. 15.
Lots of indoor activities too
Tone and hone for a better summer body at the gym.
This year, the Schaefer Athletic Center at Stevens Institute of Technology, Castle Point in Hoboken is open for ages 18 and up Monday through Friday through Aug. 15. Anyone interested in taking advantage of the Stevens facility must first verify residency with the Recreation Office.
Need to stretch? Take Pilates or Integral Hatha Yoga with a professional instructor in the high school music room. There are basketball programs for all ages, including a men's league at Webster School on Monday and Wednesday nights. For team information, call Raul Gonzales at (201) 766-3479.
New this year, Weehawken High School is hosting an Open Gym program through Aug. 22 with table games, volleyball, and basketball from 7 to 10:30 p.m.
A two-week soccer clinic will be held at the Waterfront Complex Monday through Friday until Aug. 1.
Overheating? Cool off at the West New York pool Mondays through Fridays through Aug. 29 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Bus transport is available at 9:45 and 11:15 a.m. at Town Hall, 400 Park Ave. and proof of residency is required to board. There are also family swim sessions being held at the Stevens Aquatic Center.
Contests in the summer spirit
Got a competitive edge? There are plenty of events in the spirit of fun and friendly competition summer-style.
Hungry? Children ages 3 to 10 can join the watermelon eating contest on July 23 at 6:30 p.m. at Weehawken Stadium. Or try the pie eating contest there on Aug. 13 at 6:30 p.m. for ages 3 to 10. Or maybe the hotdog eating contest for ages 9 to 12 on Aug. 20 at 7 p.m.
Born to rock? Pre-teen and early teens can sign up to enter the Battle of the Rock Band where kids have to play a guitar game board in time to hit songs.
Summer bring out the shutter bug in you? Submit up to two shots of wildlife, landscape, New Jersey scenery, or sports to the Amateur Photo Contest - no professionals allowed - by Aug. 4 at 7 p.m. Bring entries (5-by-7 or 8-by-10) to the Weehawken Public Library along with a brief explanation of how the shot was taken.
Prefer working in 3-D? Instead of photos, try the model making contest for children ages 6 to 13. Models can be picked up at the Recreation office July 14 to 18, and then the finished (assembled and decorated) model will be judged on Aug. 18 at 6:30 p.m. in the library.
Things to do just for fun
The Waterfront Complex is hosting Family Movies Under the Stars at 8 p.m. on Tuesdays. The features include Shrek 3 on July 22, The Spiderwick Chronicles on July 29, Surf's Up on Aug. 5, and E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial on Aug. 12. Bring a blanket or low lawn chair. Children 17 and under must be accompanies by an adult. If there is rain, the movies will be shown in the Weehawken High School Auditorium, Liberty Place.
The town is also hosting free field trips with free transportation. Destinations include Bear Mountain State Park on July 15, the Bronx Zoo on July 16 and Aug. 20, Island Beach on July 21, Chelsea Piers Sports & Entertainment Complex on July 24, and Highpoint State Park on Aug. 7. There are also co-pay field trips to Tomahawk Lane on July 28, Wild West City on July 31, Pt. Pleasant Beach/Boardwalk on Aug. 6, Keansburg Amusement Park on Aug. 11, Mountain Creek on Aug. 14, and a three-hour Circle Line cruise around Manhattan on Aug. 19. Residents can sign up on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at any park one week before the trip, and proof of residency is required.
Last but certainly not least is the End of Summer Bash Field Day on Aug. 20 at the Waterfront Complex from 6 to 9 p.m. There will be fun for children ages 4 to 15 with food including hotdogs, soda, and watermelon. Featured games will be a water balloon toss and super soaker can game, horseshoes, ring toss, tug-of-war, and three-legged races. Rain date is Aug. 21.
A complete list of the 2008 Summer Recreation Activities is available in the Weehawken Public Library and Town Hall, 400 Park Ave. For more information or to register for a program, call the Weehawken Recreation Office at (201) 319-6061 or visit www.weehawken-nj.com.
Comments can be sent to Mpaul@hudsonreporter.com.