Gowanda bowlers begin season; swimmers join Eden

The Gowanda Recreation youth flag football program held the second game of the winter session Jan. 13 at Gateway Park. Twenty young athletes in grades 4-8 participated in the 90-minute session. The games were very well organized with three adult referees and a fourth parent coordinating the rotation of teams from the sideline. Weather conditions at game time were very unseasonable for mid-January with sunny skies and the temperatures near 30 degrees. There was no snow on the field and it was in very good condition. The third game of the winter season was scheduled for Monday night. Additional games will be considered depending on the weather conditions.

If the weather turns colder later in January, the Gowanda Recreation Department will attempt to make an outdoor ice rink at St. John Park. The rink will only be for daytime skating and the Ruth Bareham Building will not be accessible. There will be no cost to ice skate but everyone must provide their own skates.

The high school winter sports season finally got underway with limited varsity sports beginning practice Monday. According to Candy Phillips, Gowanda athletic director, the Panthers will sponsor boys and girls bowling for their students. The Gowanda bowling coaches this year are Nicole Nellist and Jaquie Shields. Both Gowanda’s boys and girls squads have been very competitive over the past decade that have included several team championships under former coaches Lois Piscitelli and Ryan Lipinski. As of Monday, New York state is not allowing spectators at any winter sporting events.

The Gowanda varsity boys swimming program will again combine with Eden Central School this winter. The Gowanda athletes will travel to Eden for practices and meets this year. The Gowanda pool needs several repairs and is not currently available for practice. Larry Millson is the Eden/Gowanda head coach. He has coached the sport for several seasons.

The Learn to Ski Program at Holiday Valley sponsored by the Gowanda Recreation Department continues to be a bright spot during this COVID-19 pandemic. Outdoor recreation is one of the few activities in which people can participate. Parents and students in the Gowanda program are taking full advantage.

“My four children and I have skied at least five times this season and have enjoyed every minute of it,” said Gowanda graduate Mark Heichberger after a recent visit to Holiday Valley.

The skiers and snowboarders registered in the Gowanda program can continue to ski every Sunday afternoon for the remainder of the season.


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