With a new kind of normal emerging across the country, one fun slice of regular life is set to return to Nogales this summer: the summer youth programs organized by the city’s Parks and Recreation Department.
Marcel Bachelier, the city’s parks and recreation director, said the 2021 program will offer an abbreviated version of the city’s regular summer activities. Basketball, tennis and swim lessons are all on tap, and dance and archery programs might be held depending on facility availability. The city is also hoping to open the Nogales Recreation Center pool for some public hours during the summer.
Bachelier said this week that he had already heard from families who were inquiring about programs and registration.
“I think we’re all excited around here to kind of get back to some form of normalcy and I think people in the community are very excited,” he said. “They seem to be antsy to get out and get the kids a little more activity.”
In 2020, the city called off its summer programs due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Different programs are available for kids from ages 5 to 18. Instructional basketball is open to 8-to-14-year-olds; competitive basketball for 14-to-18-year-olds; tennis for ages 8 through adults; arts and crafts for 5 through 15; swim lessons for 8 through 12; archery for 8-to-16-year-olds; and dance is expected to be available for ages 5 through 17.
Most programs this year will run for four weeks, down from the typical eight-week sessions offered in normal years. Archery, if offered, will be split into two two-week sessions. Programs will start between June 22 and July 6 and end between July 15 and 30.
In addition to activities for younger kids, the summer programs are an attractive employment opportunity for local teenagers. The city has advertised jobs with the summer programs for lifeguards, sports instructors and other positions, available to youth aged 16-and-up. The jobs pay $12.15 to $15.00 per hour, according to an ad posted on the city’s Facebook page.
Bachelier said the Parks and Recreation Department hadn’t reviewed all job applications yet, but there was at least greater-than-usual interest in the lifeguard jobs this year, with 25 applications already received.