Baker-Polito Administration Announces 5th Annual Summer Nights Initiative
Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito
WORCESTER – With the summer season in full swing, Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito today joined Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Kathleen Theoharides, Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Commissioner Leo Roy, state and local officials, and key partners to announce the 2019 Summer Nights Initiative. The initiative, which the Baker-Polito Administration started in 2015, provides additional programming opportunities and extends the hours of operations at several DCR water facilities, such as pools and spray decks, in select urban communities across the state.
This year, the administration has partnered with 14 organizations serving youth within the Cities of Boston (Dorchester, Hyde Park, Jamaica Plain, Mattapan, Roxbury and the South End), Brockton, Lawrence, Lowell, New Bedford, Springfield and Worcester to provide increased programming at 26 locations. Additionally, eight state pools and two spray decks will have extended hours on Thursdays in the Cities of Boston, Chicopee, Everett, Lawrence, Malden and Worcester.
“Our administration launched this program in 2015 to provide young people across the Commonwealth with the chance to participate in recreational and educational activities, and we’re proud to kick-off another summer,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “The goal of Summer Nights is to provide safe, inclusive and fun events for kids in dozens of communities to enjoy our parks and pools and we are grateful for the organizations who participate in this program.”
“Thanks to the Summer Nights Initiative and many involved stakeholders, youth from around the state are able to participate in excellent programming that is tailored to meet their interests and needs throughout July and August,” said Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito. “The Summer Nights Initiative serves as a great example of state government working in partnership with key stakeholders to meet a shared goal that directly benefits the public.”
Additionally, the DCR will once again offer its popular Free Family Flicks movie series. Movies will be shown at Fall River Heritage State Park in Fall River, the Martini Memorial Shell in Hyde Park, Sylvester Baxter State Park in Somerville, the Charles River Esplanade’s Hatch Memorial Shell in the Back Bay, Massasoit State Park in Taunton and Pope John Paul II Park in Dorchester. Featured movies include: Ralph Breaks the Internet; Mary Poppins Returns; Spiderman into the Spider Verse; Bumblebee; The Lego Movie 2; How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World; Captain Marvel; and, Dumbo. The Free Family Flicks program provides family fun and entertainment at no charge (parking fees may apply depending on location).
“The Summer Nights Initiative provides a great opportunity for children to get outside and experience enriching programs and healthy activities all summer long,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides. “Importantly, by keeping parks and swimming facilities open a little longer and offering special programming with partners, children will remain engaged during the school vacation season.”
“Whether in a state park, a pool facility, or a partner location, the Baker-Polito Administration encourages kids to get out of the house and have fun with friends while experiencing worthwhile programming,” said Department of Conservation and Recreation Commissioner Leo Roy. “Since coming into office, Governor Baker and Lieutenant Governor Polito have prioritized recreational resources for all to enjoy, and the Summer Nights Initiative is just one of many examples of this administration’s dedication to the state parks system.”
The Summer Nights Initiative will also extend the operating hours (Thursdays in July until 7:45 PM; and, Thursday in August until 7:30 PM) at select water facilities through August 15, 2019 at the following locations:
• Allied Veterans Memorial Pool (65 Elm St, Everett, MA)
• Holland Memorial Pool (108 Mountain Ave, Malden, MA)
• Olsen Pool (95 Turtle Pond Pkwy, Hyde Park, Boston, MA)
• Sara Jane Sherman Memorial Pool (750 Meadow St, Chicopee, MA)
• Southwest Corridor Park Spraydecks (Jamaica Plain, Boston, MA)
• Dennis F. Shine Jr. Memorial Pool (87 Providence St, Worcester, MA)
• Lt. Colonel Edward J. Higgins Pool (180 Crawford St, Lawrence, MA)
• Ryan Wading Pool (350 River St, Mattapan, Boston, MA)
• Melnea Cass Pool (120 Martin Luther King Blvd, Roxbury, Boston, MA)
“Providing our youth with summer camps, extending closing times at splash parks and swimming pools, and providing a place where a community can be built are some of the great things that the Summer Nights Initiative offers to our youth,” said Worcester Mayor Joseph Petty. “Having our youth stay active and healthy ultimately leads to a safer city and healthier city. Lastly, I thank the Baker-Polito Administration for recognizing how important the issue of keeping our youth busy during these summer months is.”
“Summer is an important time of year to keep our youth active, engaged and safe,” said Worcester City Manager Ed Augustus. “We thank the Baker-Polito Administration for their continued support in extending the hours at our state pool during Thursdays in July and August.”
“The Summer Nights Initiative is a fantastic way to ensure kids remain engaged throughout school vacation and get to spend quality time with friends and family while continuing to learn and grow,” said Congressman Jim McGovern. “I’ve heard from many families in Worcester who really value this opportunity, and I’m grateful to Governor Baker, Lieutenant Governor Polito, and our fantastic Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation for once again making it available for kids in Worcester and across the Commonwealth.”
“I am very happy that pools and recreational activities across the state and in Worcester will be open for extended hours this summer,” said Senator Harriette Chandler. “One of my first jobs was teaching swimming lessons, and those summers spent in the pool helped to give me a happy, healthy childhood and community. I am glad that so many other children will receive this opportunity.”
“Our Commonwealth’s recreational areas are community gathering spaces that support outdoor activities and healthy lifestyles,” said Senator Michael Moore. “The Summer Nights Initiative has proven to be a highly successful program that continues to benefit youth in the area, and provides expanded opportunities to cool down during the hot days of summer vacation. I commend the administration for their continued commitment to supporting this fun-filled program.”
“It is great that DCR has prioritized Worcester for the expansion of Summer Nights,” said Representative David LeBoeuf. “The Boys and Girls Club and Youth Connect do such great work across the district, and throughout the entire City. It’s wonderful to see such thriving public-private partnerships to support our youth this summer.”
The Baker-Polito Administration is working in conjunction with 14 community partners to provide an exciting schedule of recreational, educational, cultural, and arts programs for kids, teens, and young adults to learn new skills and socialize with one another. Programs such as basketball, flag-football, floor hockey, kickball, dodgeball, volleyball, and ping pong, as well as, dancing, fitness, talent shows, and arts and crafts will be featured. The DCR’s program partners are Score4More (Jamaica Plain & Dorchester); PIM (Hyde Park & Dorchester); Youth Connect (Worcester); NAACP (Roxbury); MLK Family Services (Springfield); En Motion (Springfield); Originations (Roxbury); Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence (Lawrence/Methuen); Boys and Girls Club of Greater Lowell (Greater Lowell); Dennison Community Center (New Bedford); Boys and Girls Club of Metro South (Brockton); Elevate Boston Foundation (Roxbury); Lena Park Community Center (Dorchester); and, Black Ministerial Alliance (Mattapan, Dorchester, Roxbury and South End).
Additionally, the extended hours of operations will complement other programs currently offered by the DCR for families at the hundreds of state parks, forests, reservations, beaches and other facilities across the state year round. For a full list of programming, please visit the DCR’s Summer Nights Initiative webpage.
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