The Mayor's Column
Recreation DepartmentJune 01, 2016
The Monroe Township Community Center is more than just the home of the Recreation Department.
All year long the dedicated Recreation Department Staff hosts many events for residents of all ages, both in the Monmouth Road facility and in locations throughout the community.
In addition, the Department runs the annual Mayor’s Cup tournaments, where seniors in the active adult communities compete against one another in various sports, such as bowling, tennis, golf, basketball shooting, duplicate bridge, table tennis, shuffleboard and bocce. For the past two years a team, named the Mill Lakers (comprised of seniors living outside the gated communities) competed in table tennis and pickle ball.
Furthermore, from fall to spring, the Monmouth Road facility hosts open pickle ball every weekday morning. Introduced to the Township Senior Communities with the help of Recreation Advisory Board Member Norm Olinsky, pickleball is a paddle sport played with a special wiffle ball on a court that is about the size of a paddle tennis court.
The Community Center is also one location of the annual Summer Camp program, which is open to both children and grandchildren of Township residents. The camp continues to grow with more than 1,500 children enrolled in the program. The Department also hosts M.T.S.E.P.A. (Monroe Township Special Education Parents Association) Camp with programming designed specifically for children with special needs. The department also hosts many week long Specialty Camps, one being Healthy Lifestyles Camp, which is geared towards keeping kids active and away from drugs and alcohol.
The Recreation Department also runs two of the biggest events in the Township: the Fourth of July Celebration in Thompson Park (slated to start at 5 p.m. on July 4), and Octoberfest at the Community Center (slated to start at noon on Oct. 16). These annual celebrations bring the residents from our 43 square-mile town together to celebrate all that Monroe has to offer and allows us to maintain our small-town feel in such a large diverse community.
From Memorial Day to Labor Day, the Recreation Staff oversees one of the most popular parks in the Township: the Spray Park in Veterans Park on Avenue K. The Spray Park, which is ideal for younger children (generally from toddlers to age 10), has water features that dump, splash and spray water onto the youngsters daily from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., from the Friday before Memorial Day to Labor Day.
The Community Center also features a Fitness Center, which has resistance weight training machines along with cardio equipment including stationary bikes, treadmills and elliptical machines. It is open to all Township residents that are registered with the Recreation Department and have completed the Fitness Center Orientation Program.
The $10 Community Center registration fee opens more than just the doors to the fitness center, it allows residents to use either of the two gyms during open gym times to play basketball, volleyball, indoor soccer and much more.
The best part is registration for many Recreation programs (including summer camps and fitness classes) can now be done online using a credit card or debit card. Registered Community Center members can visit https://register.communitypass.net/monroetownship and login in to register for recreation programs. Those who previously registered with the Community Center should have received a letter with a temporary I.D. and password. New users can visit the site and create an account. Or, as has always been the case, registration can be done by visiting the Community Center on Monmouth Road.
I would like to commend the Recreation Department for all of their hard work to bring the many programs they sponsor to our residents.
For more information about the Recreation Department and the Community Center visit www.monroerec.com or call (732) 723-5000.