In a typically busy season, recreation centers host family days, tournaments, concerts and more.
But since March 17, all of the city’s recreation centers were shut down for the safety of patrons during the COVID-19 pandemic. Davis said not only is the department not running any programs, but all of its buildings are also closed.
In the meantime, the recreation staff has been deployed to parks for mask distribution to the public. Between May 2 and May 5, parks employees distributed over 100,000 face coverings across the city free of charge.
“The recreation staff serves as ambassadors at parks to educate the public on social distancing and face coverings,” he said.
So far, Davis said all of the interactions with the public have been “100 percent positive.”
“It’s been great to fill the need of the public,” he said.
For those who still want to enjoy New York City parks, the agency is organizing daily “parks@home” activities. From art classes and fitness instruction to virtual nature walks, the program offers something for everyone, including kids.
“Everything’s on our website,” Davis said.
As the weather continues to warm, the recreation staff will look at how to keep engaging residents in fun activities.
“We’re starting to explore our plans for summer,” Davis said, “depending on social distancing.”