2021 Winter/Spring Program and Event Guide

Planning for the Best and Preparing for the Worst

With the start of the December month, 2020 is beginning to come to a close and 2021 is on the horizon. After the seemingly insurmountable challenges culminating this year, 2021 stands as a beacon of hope and as a fresh start for many. While the changing of the calendar year does not erase the pandemic or the slew of systemic issues plaguing the country, it does offer an opportunity for reflection on how the new year can be different. Reflecting on ways to create change and protect the health and safety of the community is more important now than ever, especially given the rising number of COVID-19 cases nationwide. Tens of thousands of new cases are being reported daily across the United States. The Town of Manchester continues to encourage all community members to follow the latest state guidelines in order to keep themselves and the broader local community safe during the pandemic. Due to a spike in cases statewide, the state has decided to rollback to Phase 2.1 of the reopening plan and has released new guidance on how to prepare for the holiday season. Following this guidance will ensure that the Manchester community can enter the new year safer, healthier, and ready for positive change.

The Department of Leisure, Family, and Recreation is planning for the best and preparing for the worst in the new year to come. Parks and recreation professionals understand the potential direction that COVID-19 might be moving in during the winter months. However, the Department has decided to plan for the best and schedule programming in hopes of improved conditions. While undertaking this planning, the Department is also simultaneously preparing for the worst-case scenario. While postponement and cancellation are a strong possibility, the Department is prepared to address and be flexible with the ever-changing plans of COVID-19. Taking into consideration all of the latest guidelines and safety measures, the Department has created a 2021 Winter/Spring Program and Event Guide detailing a variety of activities and opportunities for community members to take part in. Nevertheless, as a participant registering for these upcoming programs, it is important to understand that there is a potential risk of cancellation.

Please see the 2021 Winter/Spring Program and Event Guide for the wide range of activities being offered by the Town this upcoming year. There are a variety of Early Childhood and Youth Programs to choose from, allowing a chance for children to get out of the house and participate in wide range of programs in a both safe and fun environment. Several Family Fun Nights will be hosted at the Nathan Hale Activity Center and Rec on the Run will offer activity boxes delivered to Manchester residents all season long for those who prefer the “to-go” box activity format. [Order here!]

As for adults, various adult learnshops will be hosted at the Eastside Resource Center and Center Springs Park Lodge for those interested in gaining skills in gardening, art, photography and even taxes! Please also visit the Adult Fitness pages of the catalog for a list of opportunities to get some exercise while having some fun. In addition, the Recreation Division will not be allowed access to the indoor pools at Manchester High School and therefore, there will be no indoor aquatics offered this upcoming season. There are a variety of other activities and important information in the catalog, so please take a moment to check it out and peruse the pages!

Registration for all 2021 Winter/Spring programs will begin on December 9, 2020 for residents and on December 11, 2020 for all non-residents. Registration can take place online 24/7 here, over the phone at 860-647-3084 or in person at the Community Y. In addition, due to closings from COVID-19, the expiration date of all facility membership passes has been extended. All memberships purchased now through December 2020 will be extended through May 2021. Facility passes, which are only available to Manchester residents, are required to use the recreation centers and Community Y Fitness Center during the recreation season. This includes the new, renovated Leisure Labs at Mahoney Center, which was formally the Mahoney Recreation Center wing at Washington Elementary School. Again, the Department would like to emphasize that it is planning for the best and preparing for the worst. It is essential that registrants understand the strong possibility of cancellation due to changing severity of the pandemic and subsequent regulations.

With all of the uncertainty these upcoming winter months bring in terms of COVID-19, the Recreation Division is hoping for the best in the new year to come while also preparing for the possibility of cancellations and delays. As learned from this past Spring and Summer, the pandemic makes for unpredictable conditions and presents challenges across the community. It is vital to learn from this year and remember the importance of following health guidelines, especially as the pandemic has been worsening recently. Community health and safety is the upmost priority and thus, preparing for cancellations is a part of that. However, with the new year comes new hope for change and a better future. The Department’s 2021 Winter/Spring Program and Event Guide stands as representation of that hope as well as the importance of flexibility during times of change.

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