Monday, June 20, 2011

Adaptive Recreation and Summer Fun is Here!

Summer has officially arrived! A broad spectrum of adaptive recreation opportunities is available throughout New England. Here's a sampling of just some of the fun you don't want to miss out on:

I have to toot our own program horn first: DCR's Universal Access Program is already in action with hiking this month. Our statewide trail outing program, facilitated by Stavros Outdoor Access, visits parks across Massachusetts from the coast to the Berkshires with plenty of educational themes and fun activities mixed in. Check the Summer Program page to the right in the sidebar to see when we'll be at a park near you! Sailing on the Charles River is underway daily with Community Boating. In July we'll be up and running everyday of the week with a program somewhere - kayaking, canoeing, cycling and rowing all take place on weekdays!

Next - Northeast Passage! Based in Durham, NH, this long-standing barrier-free recreation organization expands outward into Maine and Massachusetts as well as covering the ground in New Hampshire this summer. If you want to play golf, tennis, cycle, kayak, or waterski, give them a call. They also rent adaptive recreation gear for you to use on your own! Everyone who works there is a certified therapeutic recreation specialist so all the fun they provide comes with a great deal of expertise. Their full summer season culminates in September with a 100-mile ride through the White Mountains for those who seek an athletic challenge.

Accessible kayaking opportunities in the Boston area have taken a leap forward this year! Outdoor Recreation of Hopkinton with the help of Waypoint Adventure is offering adaptive programs at 2 new locations besides Hopkinton  - Spot Pond in Middlesex Fells Reservation and UMASS Boston. Check these out at their new website: Boating in Boston.

In the Pioneer Valley, a wonderful program has been gaining momentum on the Norwottuck Rail Trail for a few years now. All Out Adventures provides Cycling for Seniors! I glimpse this program in action while passing by and it is great to see people 60 years and older enjoying a wide variety of supportive bikes. AOA also offers Kayaking for Seniors. It's great to see more focused recreation activities available now for this age group!

A little bit of rain did not deter these hikers from a recent
exploration of Mt. Tom State Reservation in Holyoke!
And don't forget DCR's REC CONNECT program - if you live in Boston, Worcester, or Holyoke, and surrounding areas, we can help you meet your recreation dreams and goals and build your skills in a wide variety of activities. Check out our facebook page linked above to see what's going on and give Heidi a call at 413-577-3840 to find out more! We are looking for mentors, volunteers, and more people who just want to have fun! We also need your input: What activity would you like to see us turn into an adaptive recreation program next? Please vote on the sidebar poll and talk to Heidi!

There's more - look around here and stay tuned!

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