Local residents will once again have a three-month oasis from the winter. The city of Dunkirk will open its Rec Center at the Chautauqua County Fairgrounds from Jan. 1 to March 31.
With Common Council granting approval for the lease between the city and Fairgrounds Association, Youth and Recreation Director Tim Gornikiewicz said the plan was to bring back programs that were left out in 2012.
That is possible, in part, because the lease payments are $200 per month instead of the prior years' rate of $700 per month.
"Nearly all programs will return that were offered in 2012. Adult hockey, youth soccer clinics, adult soccer, softball/baseball clinics, morning walks, open gym dodge ball, birthday parties, Little League and other group rentals, and hopefully more," Gornikiewicz stated. "Other programs are being discussed."
He added softball/baseball clinic dates will be announced later.
A floor hockey league organizational meeting will be held Monday at 6 p.m. with the basketball league meeting set for 7 p.m., both in City Hall.
The adult floor hockey is slated to play Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays at the Rec Center. Adult basketball will be held Saturday mornings at the Dunkirk High School gyms from January through April.
"Last year there was 14 teams, this year we hope to get more," Gornikiewicz said of the basketball league. "This year the city will administer this program and receive league fees for this."
In addition to the leagues, there will be three co-ed pick-up team activities.
Co-ed pickup floor hockey is scheduled Sundays from 10 a.m. to noon. Co-ed pickup dodgeball is scheduled Saturdays from 10 a.m. to noon. Co-ed pickup adult soccer will be held Mondays from 7 to 10 p.m. There is a $3 fee per person for each co-ed pickup event.
Mayor Anthony J. Dolce talked about the Rec Center operation at a recent Common Council meeting.
"What we found last year was, when I really limited the events the demand was still there. ... There's a fee, some of the leagues we collect a dollar fee just for them showing up," he said. "So it's really a win-win. The public wants to be able to use the facility and exercise indoors in the wintertime, and we put on great events for youth and adults and it works out real nice."
Gornikiewicz added all information about the programs can be found at www.dunkirktoday.com or on Facebook, Dunkirk Recreation League; or by calling 366-9886 or 366-9885.
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