WELLSBURG - With July nearly ended, many families are beginning to think about the new school year.
But the staff and board at Brooke Hills Park want area residents to know there's still opportunities for some summer fun, including the park's annual observance of National Kids Day, Aug. 4, its annual golf scramble and other activities.
National Kids Day was created by KidsPeace, a nonprofit organization aimed at helping children to avoid nelgect, trauma and crises, to encourage families to spend more time together. It's been endorsed by Congress and the U.S. Conference of Mayors.
Janice McFadden, park manager, said the festivities will begin at 1 p.m. and again include a cardboard boat race, in which children are invited to team with parents, grandparents and other family members to create small boats from cardboard and duct tape supplied by the park.
The object is to create a "vessel" that will carry the child across the park's swimming pool. Winners will be named in various age groups.
McFadden said families wanting to participate in the race should arrive at noon to begin building their boats.
The Duck Pluck contest also will be held, with ducks drawn from the baby pool to determine the winners of a 2014 golf pass for the park and $100 and $200 cash prizes. Chances are $3 each or two for $5 and may be purchased at the park's clubhouse.
There also will be free swimming (when the pool isn't in use for the race), food, games, music and door prizes during the National Kids Day event, which will be held rain or shine.
McFadden said the park board has decided, as an experiment, to expand the pool's hours to 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays in addition to noon to 7 p.m. Fridays through Sundays.
In recent years the board cut the pool's hours to weekends only, citing declining attendance, but more patrons are expected this year in light of this summer's high temperatures.
McFadden said turnout was good for a recent week of free swimming offered by Brooke Hills Free Methodist Church, which covered the cost for lifeguards and provided free hot dogs, chips and bottled water.
For avid golfers, the park will hold its annual night golf scramble on Aug. 10. The cost for the two-man scramble is $50, which includes a steak dinner, for those who pre-register and $60 on that night.
McFadden added the park offers green fees at half price Mondays through Wednesdays.
The park also will hold the next in a series of mud bogs that day at 1 p.m. Admission is $5, with pit passes, for those who want to see the action up close, available for an additional $5.
Registration for participants will begin at 10 a.m.
McFadden said the park's last mud bog for the year will be held during the Brooke County Fair, which will return to the park Sept. 6-8.
The park also is home to Brooke Hills Playhouse, which will be staging productions of "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe,' Aug. 2-4 and 9-11; "Bathroom Humor," a comedy, Aug. 23-25 and 30 and Sept. 1; and a reader's theater production to be announced and presented Sept. 13-15.
Shows are offered at night and as afternoon matinees. For information about curtain times and admission, call (304) 737-3344 or visit the playhouse's website at www.brookehillsplayhouse.com or its Facebook page.
McFadden said the park now has full hookups for recreational vehicles as well as a scenic miniature golf course, paddleboat pond, playground and the Brooke County Veterans Memorial Park, which was completed last year.
For information about the park and its various facilities and events, call (304) 737-1236.
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