June 4, 2013

Mayor Emanuel and the Chicago Park District Announce Spring Program Enrollment Up 22% Over Last Year; Summer Enrollment on Tap to Beat Last Year

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the Chicago Park District Superintendent Michael Kelly announced today that the Chicago Park District received a record number of both on-line and in-person registrations for spring programs since it launched its new registration system a year ago with totals of more than 80,000 registrants, compared to 65,000 in 2012. It is also the third straight session with more than 70,000 registrations.  The upward trend is continuing with 2013 summer registration, now in progress.  During the first 30 days of summer on-line registration, 31,500 enrollments were recorded, compared to 28,750 registrations during the same period in 2012. Summer program registration is still available by contacting local parks, visiting www.chicagoparkdistrict.com or calling 312.742.PLAY. 

“Spring and summer programs with the Chicago Park District are a constructive and valuable way for children to participate in positive activities and learn new skills outside of school,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel.  “This summer, with our Summer of Learning programs, children will be able to participate in high-quality programs that will help them continue to learn even when school is out.”

New this year, as part of Mayor Emanuel’s new Summer of Learning initiative, summer camp curriculum will now include 20 minutes of dedicated reading time.  Summer of Learning represents the first coordinated and dedicated approach of its kind for youth in every neighborhood to access high-quality programs.

“By offering quality programs, affordable prices and convenient locations, it’s no wonder that the Chicago Park District is a popular option for keeping families active,” added Superintendent Michael Kelly.  “As we ramp up for summer day camp, we encourage patrons to consider our programs.”

Summer day camp hours vary for each location with most camps scheduled from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. or 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.  Many parks offer extended hours in the morning and early evening.  Fees vary depending on location, offerings and hours.

Also this year, the Chicago Park District has funds available to provide financial assistance for eligible City of Chicago families who wish to enroll in the 2013 summer day camp program.  Families can apply at their local park.

Each summer, the Chicago Park District provides more than 30,000 campers ages 6-12 with a season of supervised activity at more than 230 local parks.  Standard day camps run for six weeks from July 1 – Aug. 9.  Parents seeking programs in August are encouraged to also register their children for specialty and late-summer camps.  Education and character-building components are combined with recreation at several of the Park District’s specialty camps including cultural arts, leadership, sports, and urban campers. 

In addition to summer day camp and programs, citywide parks will host more than 750 cultural activities as part of the Night Out in the Parks initiative. 

Earlier this month, Mayor Emanuel, Park Superintendent Kelly and Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) Commissioner Michelle Boone announced the launch.  Night Out in the Parks will make community parks a safe haven and a hub of activity with its cultural programs.  The series aims to elevate and expand the cultural assets of neighborhoods across Chicago, facilitate neighborhood planning of cultural activity and help the City integrate culture into daily life—all of which are priorities of the Chicago Cultural Plan.

Each season, the Chicago Park District offers thousands of sport and fitness, cultural and environmental programs for adults, seniors, teens and youth.  For more information, contact your local park, visit www.chicagoparkdistrict.com or call 312.742.PLAY.  More information about Night Out in the Parks programming is available at www.nightoutintheparks.com.