POTSDAM – Planning is underway for summer recreation programs at Pine Street, Postwood and Norwood beaches. The recreation directors of the three programs anticipate fewer restrictions in the event of a pandemic.

In Postwood Park, recreation specialist Michelle L. Garrow said this year will see renovations that will include “significant upgrades to bathing facilities” and new pickleball courts. At present, she said she is “working on getting permits in place” for renovations and cleaning.

Postwood is set to host dragon boat races this year with Clarkson University. The races have teams of around 20, racing two boats at a time.

In addition to upgrades, Ms Garrow said plans include swimming lessons and other community programs, which this year will include some activities through Cornell Cooperative Extension.

“We work with Cornell Cooperative Extension to bring them in and do programs with the community,” she said. “We’re definitely going to look at health and wellness, that’s one of our groups.”

She also expects the park to host school groups this summer, but those details are still being ironed out.

Ms Garrow predicts that the COVID-19 restrictions that have been in place for the past two summers will mostly be lifted. Kayaks and paddle boards will be available for rent this summer.

“We’ll have a little more flexibility to do things this year,” she said. “Check our Facebook page for our upcoming events. We’ll be posting there all summer and posting information as it becomes available.

The city is accepting applications for lifeguards until May 6. The app can be downloaded from wdt.me/NJDvaT.

Ms Garrow, the water sports director for the village of Norwood, said plans were underway for a separate summer recreation programme. Some of Norwood’s recreational activities will be tied to the celebration of the village’s 150th anniversary.

“This is the 150th anniversary of the Village of Norwood. We are trying to maintain a lot of things this summer, some at the beach,” Ms Garrow said. “There will be stuff all over the village for the rest of the year.”

At the beach, the village will have a community coloring book mural. A local artist, along with the Norwood-Norfolk Art Club and the National Honor Society, will design the mural, and families can sign up for time slots to color parts of it with paint.

On July 2, the village is planning a flotilla, “a giant water parade for anyone who wants to participate”.

“There will be family activities and music that day,” Ms Garrow said.

In August, she said an unpowered poker race on water was planned. Participants may use kayaks, rowboats, canoes, paddle boards or any other non-motor driven item.

“We’re also going to be running swimming lessons there this summer and working with Cornell Cooperative Extension” and a few other organizations, she said.

For the Potsdam Village Recreation Program, Recreation Director Trey T. Smutz says it is still in the planning stage. It refines schedules, the number of lifeguards needed, and transportation options for getting kids to and from recreational activities.

He plans to give an update to village administrators in the near future and hopes applications for summer aid will be open by next week.

He also works with the state Department of Health, which happens every year, to determine if their programming will be considered camp. This will impact the number of lifeguards and weekly schedules. He said they had the classification of the camp in the past.

“We had no problem being classed as a camp. We’re not trying to avoid being certified as a camp,” but it’s more complicated than a standard recreation program, Smutz said.

He said pandemic restrictions should mostly be lifted. This means this year will be “more similar to programs you saw two or three years ago” with more activity options available more consistently throughout the summer.

“It was more of a free run, as long as we knew where everyone was at any given time,” Mr. Smutz said.

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