Note from Recreation Director Andrew Urckfitz: More programs rolling out at Rec in 2023
As we start the new year, I am excited about what is in store at Penfield Recreation.

Following the pandemic, I am happy to report we are returning to our full programming schedule for the first time since 2019. Along with standard programs and events, we will be introducing new ones. 

I think you will like what’s ahead this year as there will be something for residents of all ages to enjoy.

Aquatics Programming

We are finally back in the water this year; I hope you’ll join us!

On January 21, aquatics programming started at the Penfield Community Pool (at Penfield High School) with private swimming lessons and springboard diving classes on Saturday afternoons. Evening lap swims (water walking) have also returned on Monday and Wednesday evenings. 

Friday night family open swim starts January 27. Family open swim will have a lap lane available, the diving well open, and tot docks in the water for our youngest swimmers. In a change from previous years, family swim nights are pre-registration only.

To assist with increased programming, our aquatics team is looking to hire additional lifeguards and swim instructors. Are you interested, but not certified? Penfield Rec offers American Red Cross Lifeguard Certification classes and swim instructor classes (American Red Cross Water Safety Instructor) throughout the winter and spring seasons. 

As we move further into 2023, we will have additional swim-related offerings. Be sure to monitor our website for the latest information.

The Sandwich Counter at Penfield Community Center

Like I mentioned, growing offerings for our community is always a goal. And, with that in mind, we have started a weekly lunch cafe appropriately named The Sandwich Counter at the Community Center. 

The counter is open from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. each Tuesday. Sandwiches are just $4 and come with chips, and a soup-only option is also available for $3.

The Sandwich Counter provides an inexpensive spot to meet with new and old friends. All are welcome to stop by and order from a rotating selection of sandwiches which are highlighted by a weekly sandwich and soup special.

Lunches can be pre-ordered by calling our office at (585) 340-8655. You can also stop by and purchase lunch the day of. More information, including a menu, is available here.

DEAR Program

On Tuesdays, along with our lunch offerings, we host the Daytime Education at Recreation program (DEAR) at Penfield Recreation for adults. Weekly programs vary, alternating between presentations on local history with local author and historian Donovan Shilling, “Hodgepodge” with the ever-popular and extraordinary lecturer Jack Kowiak offering an interesting topic once a month, and bi-weekly films curated by Professor Al Biles. This semester’s film series theme is “So Bad They’re Good.”

Egg Decorating Contest

We are promoting a very special art project for this year, the 2023 “Egg-Citing” Community Egg Decorating Contest. 

Last year, DEAR friend Diane Meyers passed away, but before she did, she donated her entire collection of clean empty eggs, 105 dozen to be exact, to us. She carefully opened and ate each one of the eggs and then strategically glued the empty shells back together with the hopes of decorating them one day. Before her passing, she did beautifully paint several dozen. Now, we are challenging the Penfield community to help us finish decorating the remaining 1,260 eggs in her honor. 

To take part, you can purchase an egg for $1 and then return the decorated egg to be entered into our decorating contest on Thursday, March 30. Prizes will be awarded for best eggs in several categories, including an age-appropriate category. We will also use some of the eggs for our Rabbit Scavenger Hunt which will take place at Shadow Pines on April 1. Registration is required. More information will soon be available on our website.

Penfield Children’s Garden 

The newly created garden is expected to be up and running for the 2023 season. Thanks to a generous grant from the Genesee Valley Regional Market Authority in 2022, we have been able to create a 50’x 30’ space adjacent to the Penfield Community Victory Garden exclusively for the Penfield Children’s Garden. The space will include many growing beds and an education/teaching area. The Recreation Department will program the space with garden education programs for youth ages 2-18. It will also be open to the public to visit at any time. 

Parks & Recreation Advisory Board

The Recreation Department is excited about the re-launch of the Parks & Recreation Advisory Board in 2023. The group will provide input on parks and recreation topics to help us better meet the needs of our community through programming, events, facilities, and amenities.

Stay Updated

For the latest information on the Recreation Department, please monitor our website or call us at (585) 340-8655. You can also subscribe to our Penfield Recreation e-newsletter by clicking here.

Be active and be well,

Andrew Urckfitz, Recreation Director