Ocean City follows example of U.S. House in marking this month to honor park services
(July 5, 2019) Mirroring the national designation issued by the U.S. House of Representatives, Ocean City is proclaiming July as Recreation and Parks Month, with a celebration set for July 20 at Northside Park, 125th Street bayside.
Mayor Rick Meehan welcomed Recreation and Parks Director Susan Petito, Recreation Superintendent Kate Gaddis and Parks Superintendent Gary Collier for a proclamation presentation during the City Council meeting on Monday.
“We’ve got the whole executive branch,” Meehan quipped.
Lighthearted observations aside, Meehan said recreation is a vital element for the resort community and provides added amenities for both tourists and residents.
“For those of us who have lived here for a long time and raised our kids here, we know how many activities they have [at Northside Park],” he said. “As times continues to roll and we become grandparents, darn if we’re not back up there again.”
Among the merits mentioned in the proclamation is the importance of park facilities and recreation programs to enhance quality of life by providing healthy activities that improve the economic and environmental well being of a community.
Speaking for the assembled leadership team, Petito acknowledged a few faces were missing.
“I’m sorry that [Golf Superintendent] Joe Perry and [Golf Pro] Bob Croll couldn’t make it representing Eagle’s Landing Golf Course, “ she said.
Petito expressed appreciation for the accolades and returned the sentiments.
“We love what we do,” she said. “We are so grateful to the mayor and council to allow us to have so much fun and give so much back to this community.”
From Petito’s viewpoint, the goal is to provide quality recreation, cultural and social opportunities for community members.
“Safe, clean and enjoyable park facilities [help] to enhance the quality of life,” she said.
To help celebrate Recreation and Parks Month, about 45 youth camp programs are scheduled during July, as well as numerous adult sports activities, Petito said.
“We are continuing to do our free value-added events [such as] ‘Movies on the Beach,’ [and] ‘Family Beach Olympics,’” she said.
Additionally, Petito said a special event is slated to highlight Recreation and Parks Month on Saturday, July 20 from 2-4 p.m. at Northside Park, 125th Street.
“There will be water-based games and things of that nature in one of our most beautiful parks,” she said.
Prior to that event, she said a ribbon cutting for the re-opening of Gorman Park on 136th Street is scheduled for July 10 at 11 a.m.
Petito said the public is welcome to attend both events.