The Takoma Park Recreation Department, which is based out of the community center at 7500 Maple Avenue, hosts year-round sporting activities for youth as well as adults. With school back in session, the department's fall program is getting into gear in the coming days with several clinics and leagues holding their opening sessions.
Eric Rasch, Takoma Park's recreation manager, has a hand in the planning, organization, oversight and coaching of some of these programs. Rasch spoke with Patch on Thursday about the upcoming youth recreational season.
Event: Reggie Williams Basketball Skills Clinic
Age Bracket: 6-12
Location: Takoma Park Recreation Center, New Hampshire Avenue
Date & Time: Saturdays, Sept. 18-Oct. 23, 10:45-11:45
According to Rasch: We've had Reggie run a couple different clinics and the kids love him. He's a former NBA player and Georgetown player. They won an NCAA Championship with him playing on the team. He's got a lot to teach the kids and the kids will benefit from going to his clinic.
Event: Youth Tennis Clinic
Age Bracket: 7-13
Location: Tennis Courts, Takoma Park Middle School
Date & Time: Tuesdays, Sept. 21-Oct. 19, 3:45-5:45
According to Rasch: I am the instructor for youth tennis. It's good for the beginner or intermediate player. They can either learn about tennis with all the different strokes and footwork, or we'll talk about technique and try to improve your game. The kids seem to have a lot of fun when they do it and the parents are happy with the outcome.
Event: Youth Golf Classes
Age Bracket: 6-12
Location: Paint Branch Golf Complex
Date & Time: Wednesdays, Sept. 22-Nov. 10, 4:00-5:30
According to Rasch: It's really about introductory golf lessons. You're going to learn how to swing, follow through and hit the golf ball. We had a golf and tennis camp this summer. It was a partnership with the golf course so we had professional trainers teaching the kids and they loved it, so we're hoping this is like that.
Event: Outdoor Street Hockey
Age Bracket: 7-11
Location: Outdoor Basketball Court, Takoma Park Community Center
Date & Time: Thursdays, Sept. 23-Oct. 28, 3:45-4:45
According to Rasch: It's a free program for kids in Takoma Park. It is after school, kind of constructive, and it is the first time we're offering it so we want to see how it works. Floor hockey is a program that is full year after year, so street hockey is kind of an expansion of that since there's such a demand for floor hockey.
Event: Go Deep! Flag Football Fun
Age Bracket: 8-13
Location: Ed Wilhelm Field (behind Piney Branch Elementary School)
Date & Time: Wednesdays, Sept. 29-Oct. 27, 3:30-4:30
According to Rasch: Flag football is another free program. Today, obesity is on everybody's radar. We want to make sure to offer programs that are going to get kids out there and active. It's safe because we're not talking about tackling and parents appreciate that because they don't have to worry about their children getting hurt.
For more information, or to sign your child up for an upcoming event organized by the Takoma Park Recreation Department, visit http://www.tprecreation.org/.
To keep up with local sports, visit www.twitter.com/patchsportsmd.