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johnson county recreation
While people in Johnson County work hard, they like their downtime as well, and we offer many wonderful places for individuals and families to learn, play, relax, be active, and enjoy the outdoors. Johnson County’s dozens of parks, recreation facilities, lakes, and public gardens offer something for everyone. Checkout one of Johnson County’s 13 libraries, spend an afternoon at the Johnson County Museum, or when the weather is warm enjoy a movie or Broadway show at Theatre in The Park. Our recreational amenities play a huge role in Johnson County being a community of choice.

Recreation News

See what's coming up for the week of Aug. 8-14

Notes: For more information or to register online for the programs listed here, visit JCPRD.com/Register and complete a search for any of the activity numbers listed below. To register by phone, call (913) 831-3359. For all in-person programs, physical distancing and COVID-19 safe practices will be encouraged. 

The September through December season of JCPRD program information will be online after July 23!

Here's a sampling of programs JCPRD has coming up for the week of Aug. 8-14: 

Aug. 8 - Summer season ends at Shawnee Mission Park Marina & Beach, 7900 Renner Road, Shawnee & Lenexa, and Kill Creek Park Beach & Marina, 11670 Homestead Lane, Olathe, All Ages, hours, rental, and admission fees vary;  also Shawnee Mission Park Marina open Saturday and Sundays through Sept. 6.) - Capacity limits have been lifted and patrons will be able to walk up to the facilities, although reservations are still recommended for the very busy Shawnee Mission Park Marina. Marinas offer boat rentals, including canoes, pedal boats, kayaks, and paddleboards. For more information about the marinas or beaches, follow these links.

Aug. 8 - Evening in the Park (Theatre in the Park in Shawnee Mission Park with a separate entrance at 7710 Renner Road, Shawnee, 6 to 10 p.m., All ages, FREE) - Plan to attend a free outdoor concert of bluegrass music followed by a showing of a similarly-themed movie on a Sunday evening in early August. This year’s Evening in the Park event will include a two-hour concert by the Short Round Stringband and The Matchsellers. After the concert, the movie “Oh Brother, Where Art Thou,” will be shown. This now annual event is intended as a "thank you" for the community’s ongoing support of JCPRD’s parks, programs, and special events!

Aug. 9, 10, & 11  - Museum: Kids’ Day(s) Out (Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center, 8788 Metcalf Ave., Overland Park, Ages 6-10, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily, $35 per person)  - Come have fun when school is out! Discover history through hands-on activities and exploration of KidScape and museum exhibits, play games, and enjoy down time. Bring a lunch, snacks, and water bottle and dress for the weather - we will go outside if we can. We are open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., but you may drop off and pick up at any time. Five year old children can be enrolled if currently attending kindergarten. Aug. 9 session activity number 9251; Aug. 10, 9252; and Aug. 11, 9253. For program questions call the museum (913) 715-2570.

Aug. 10 - Early Learning: Silly Sensory Walks (Meadowbrook Park - Shelter #1, 9101 Nall Ave., Prairie Village, 9:30 to 10:15 a.m., Ages 0 to 3 with Adult, $3 per person, $4 nonresidents) - Explore the park with a group and find fun and tactile ways to interact along the way! Limit of two children per adult. Activity number 9741.

Aug. 10 - Technology: Online Safety (Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse, 9101 Nall Ave., Prairie Village, 1 to 3 p.m., Ages 50 Plus, $20 per person, $22 nonresidents) - Learn tips, tricks, and things to avoid to make your online life a little safer through the use of software, apps, and best practices. Find out what the latest buzzwords mean, and be able to ask questions. No one is ever too safe, and now issues come up all the time. Activity number 9596.

Aug. 11 - Museum: Retro Storytime - “Tommy Visits the Doctor” (Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center, 8788 Metcalf Ave., Overland Park, Ages 3-5 with Adult, 10  to 10:45 a.m., $2 per person, $1.60 members) - Preschoolers love stories from long ago, read by a special guest from the 1950s All-Electric House! Craft activity included after the story ends. In this Little Golden book from 1962, a boy named Tommy and a rabbit named Bobby visit their doctors. Activity number 9238. This is the fourth of four monthly sessions, but a new season begins Sept. 8. To see all upcoming sessions, visit JCPRD.com/Register and search for “Retro.” 

Aug. 12 - Games: Bingo - Ice Cream (Roeland Park Community Center, 4850 Rosewood Dr., 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., Ages 50 Plus, $5 per person, $6 nonresidents) - BINGO! Delight in food, prizes, fun and 12 games of bingo. A variety of prizes will be awarded including gift certificates. Please pre-register at least one week in advance. Payment is required at time of registration. For the enjoyment of all participants, children are not permitted to attend 50 Plus Bingos. Cost of admission covers snacks and staff time to administer the bingo program. No additional charge for bingo. Activity number 9550.

Aug. 14 - Special Events: Kill Creek Park Triathlon (Kill Creek Park, 11670 Homestead Lane, Olathe, Ages 11 and Older, 7:30 to Noon, fees vary. NOTE: As a result of this event, Kill Creek Park will not open for public use until Noon on this date) - The Kill Creek Park Coed Triathlon is the perfect race for both the new and experienced triathlete. Situating ourselves on the calendar as your “last hurrah”, we are the perfect race to cap off your season. The event is a Coed Sprint Triathlon with categories for Individuals, Athena/Clydesdale, and Relays. The 2021 Kill Creek Park Triathlon is a USA Triathlon sanctioned and Paratriathlon Friendly event. To register for this event, go to https://runsignup.com/Race/KS/Olathe/2021KillCreekParkTriathlon.

 

Check out some of the programs JCPRD has coming up for the week of Aug. 1-7

Notes: For more information or to register online for the programs listed here, visit JCPRD.com/Register and complete a search for any of the activity numbers listed below. To register by phone, call (913) 831-3359. For all in-person programs, physical distancing and COVID-19 safe practices will be encouraged. 

Here's a sampling of programs JCPRD has coming up for the week of Aug. 1 - 7: 

Aug. 3 - Exercise: Chair Yoga (Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse, 9101 Nall Ave., Prairie Village, Tuesdays 10:30 to 11:20 a.m., Ages 50 Plus, 6 sessions, $47 per person, $52 nonresidents) - Take yoga off the mat and onto the chair, incorporating breathing with movement while retaining all the benefits of yoga easily from a chair. Experience standing balance poses using the chair for support as needed. Activity number 9605. Thursday session begins Aug. 5 - Activity number 9607.

Aug. 3 - Special Interest: We Were Beachside Once - Kansas Geology (Virtual Program, Ages 50 Plus, 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., FREE) - Kansas is certainly not a state associated with beachside living, but in past geological times, what is now Kansas has not only been near an ocean, but under the ocean! In this presentation, University of Kansas Geology Professor Alison Olcott will take you through a tour of the geological history of the state, including how the rocks around us formed, and what the fossils in those rocks tell us about the animals that used to live where we do now. Activity number 9484.

Aug. 4 - Games: Virtual Scattergories (Virtual Program, Ages 50 Plus, 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., FREE) - Think fast and write quicker in this fun and fast-paced game of alliterative words and categories! Activity number 9920.

Aug. 4 - Art: Plein Air (Antioch Park, 6501 Antioch, Merriam, Ages 50 Plus, 8 sessions, Wednesdays 9 to 11:30 a.m., $65 per person, $72 nonresidents) - Explore the beauty of the outdoors at Antioch Park and learn how to translate it to paper or canvas by painting outdoors. Learn color mixing, light representation, and more. Contact (913) 826-2830 for full supply list. Additional dates may be added in case of inclement weather. Activity Number 9812.

Aug. 4 - Yoga: Sunset Yoga (Meadowbrook Park, 9101 Nall Ave., Prairie Village, Wednesdays 6 to 6:50 p.m., Ages 14 & Older, 6 sessions, $47 per person, $52 nonresidents) - Enjoy the summer breeze while you regulate your metabolism, increase flexibility, and coordination by practicing low-intensity yoga on the park lawn. Lengthen your muscles while increasing both bone and muscle density. Yoga Participants of all levels are welcome. Participants are required to bring their own yoga mat and other equipment needed. Classes will meet at Shelter 3, located on the east side of the park by The Grove playground, weather permitting. Activity number 9729.

Aug. 5 - Special Interest: The Great Western Directors (Virtual program, Ages 50 Plus, 10 to 11 a.m., FREE) - Join Instructor Larry Brown for an engaging discussion examining the efforts of the great Western film directors of the 1950s as they labored to elevate the Western above the one-dimensional characters and scenarios of the 1930 films. You may be surprised at the level of sophistication they brought to the screen This is the last of four monthly programs through August in the series How Hollywood Conquered the West. Activity number 9776.

Aug. 6 - Discovery: Kids' Glow Party (Meadowbrook Park Clubhouse, 9101 Nall Ave., Prairie Village, Ages 6-12, 7 to 9 p.m., $10 per person, $13 nonresidents) - Anything glows at this party! Enjoy glow in the dark games, arts and crafts, and face painting. Please register at least one week in advance. Activity number 9779.

Aug. 7 - Art: Ceramics (Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center, 8788 Metcalf Ave., Overland Park, Ages 8 to 13, Saturdays 10 a.m. to Noon, 4 sessions, $100 per person, $110 nonresidents) - Clay provides an opportunity for problem-solving and creative thinking. Learn score and slip, how to use various clay tools, and apply glaze to a finished design. Students will be introduced to the Potter’s Wheel. Activity number 9662. 

 

Here's a sampling of programs JCPRD has coming up for the week of July 25-31

Notes: For more information or to register online for the programs listed here, visit JCPRD.com/Register and complete a search for any of the activity numbers listed below. To register by phone, call (913) 831-3359. For all in-person programs, physical distancing and COVID-19 safe practices will be encouraged. 

Here's a sampling of programs JCPRD has coming up for the week of July 25 - 31: 

July 25 - Family Fun: Shooting Sports Family Fun Time (TimberRidge Adventure Center, 12300 S. Homestead Lane, Olathe, Ages 8 & Older, 2:30 to 4:30 p.m., $12 per person, $13 nonresidents) - Archery and BB guns will be offered at their respective ranges from 2:30 - 4:30 pm. Participants (including adults) must pre-register for this event online - no drop-ins accepted, and may come and go or stay for the entire event. Families will rotate through the activities at their own pace. In case of inclement weather, program may be cancelled. Activity number 9609.

 

July 26 - Games: Learn to Play...Pinochle (Matt Ross Community Center, 8101 Marty St., Overland Park, Ages 50 Plus, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., $6 per person, $7 nonresidents)  - A beginner's guide to what's sure to be your new favorite games. Handouts provided. Check out our drop-in groups after your lesson! Activity number 9798.

 

July 28 - Games: Bingo 80s Stars - Where Are They Now (Virtual Program, Ages 50 Plus, 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., FREE) BINGO! Join us online for virtual Bingo. Join in with friends as we play for pride, not prizes, at our themed virtual bingos. Activity number 9224.

 

July 29 - Technology: How to Use Zoom (Roeland Park Community Center, 4850 Rosewood Dr., 1 to 2 p.m., Ages 50 Plus, $10 per person, $11 nonresidents) - Zoom is the new buzzword! Learn how to sign up and use the software platform Zoom. Bring your device and any associated account passwords. Activity number 9553.

 

July 31 - Boating: Johnson County Sailing Society - Come Sail With Us! (Shawnee Mission Park Marina, 7900 Renner Road, Shawnee, Noon - 1 p.m., Ages 18 & Older, FREE) - All sailors and sailing enthusiasts are warmly welcome to join us for lunch along with the graduates of the Sailing I class. Bring your sack lunch, and afterwards you will have an opportunity to sail a variety of vessels while participating in water activities like mock races or a sailing scavenger hunt. While this is listed as a one-hour event, organizers said it will continue until everyone who has shown an interest has an opportunity to take a ride. This is the third of three sessions this summer. Activity number 9571. 

 

New memorial golf tournament to honor Gary L. Haller

A new memorial golf tournament scheduled for late August will celebrate the life and accomplishments of JCPRD’s former director and raise funds for the foundation that continues to support his vision.

The first-ever Gary L. Haller Memorial Golf Tournament will take place on Friday, Aug. 20, at the Tomahawk Hills Golf Course, 17501 Midland Drive, Shawnee.

Haller served as JCPRD’s director from August 1974 until he retired in March 2001. He passed away on Dec. 10, 2020.

“Over his 27 years of directorship for JCPRD, Gary was recognized at the highest agency and individual levels in park and recreation,” said JCPRD Administration Manager and event organizer Jo Ann Courtney. “He made many friends locally, regionally, and nationally through his love and leadership in the parks and recreation arena.  Without a doubt, Gary left JCPRD and Johnson County better than he found it. (This event) “will be a sort of reunion of former JCPRD employees and friends who worked with Gary over his career with JCPRD and a chance to say goodbye since services were limited to family only due to the coronavirus (at the time of his death in December).”

Depending on the response, it is the intent to make this tournament an annual event. Courtney said the idea for the tournament was presented to Haller’s Widow, Vicki Haller, who whole-heartedly supported it. 

“Gary and Vicki lived across from Tomahawk Hills Golf Course and (he) was a frequent golfer,” Courtney said. “Often in the evenings, he and his trusted dog Herk would roam the hills and valleys of the course. Through his efforts, he grew the game of golf in Johnson County, including securing the funding for JCPRD’s second golf course, Heritage Park Golf Course, and overseeing both courses during his tenure.” 

The foundation benefitting from the tournament also relates to Haller’s efforts at JCPRD.

“Net proceeds from the tournament will benefit The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County” said Erika Seward, executive director of the foundation. “It was Gary’s vision that led to the creation of the foundation which promotes the development and sustainability of parks, trails, green space, recreation, and the arts through advocacy and financial support.  He served as a member throughout his career and remained a strong supporter after retirement.”

Check in for the tournament will begin at noon on Aug. 20, with a shotgun start at 1 p.m. Registration fees are $100 for individuals and $400 for teams of four. Registration includes green fees, cart rental, light lunch, swag bag, prizes, and tickets for each player to the memorial awards and dinner banquet immediately following the tournament. There is limited space for golfers and banquet guests. To register or for more information, go to jcprdfoundation.org/golf.

There are also opportunities to sponsor a golf hole, beverage cart, and more, as well as opportunities for non-golfers to get involved. 

“Golfers and nongolfers can participate through volunteering to help with the tournament or by attendance at a memorial banquet following the tournament,” Seward said. “Players and nonplayers are invited.”

Kansas PreK to 12th Grade Students and Parents Get Free Admission to two JCPRD sites

The Johnson County Museum and Theatre in the Park are joining forces with the Kansas State Department of Education and cultural sites around the state to provide a summer of enrichment for PreK to 12th grade students in the state of Kansas – and their parents and legal guardians, too! 

Sunflower Summer is a program of the Kansas State Department of Education. It is designed to provide a wide variety of ways for families to get out, explore something new, and enjoy time together. Kansas families can visit more than 70 sites for free, including museums, zoos, historic landmarks, and more for free with the Sunflower Summer Passport.

“Visiting museums, viewing art, going to theater, and the like are great fun, but they are also incredible educational experiences. They light sparks in kids’ minds, prompt them to ask why and how questions, and help them make connections,” said Johnson County Museum Director Mary McMurray. “These experiences help prepare students for a new school year, and a lifetime of learning.”  

Sunflower Summer is running through Sunday, Aug. 15. Kansas students and their parents/legal guardians are provided one free visit to each of the participating attractions. 

To start your summer of experiential learning, simply go to sunflowersummer.org, select the correct app store, then download the app to your phone. Follow the prompts to create an account as a parent/guardian, add your children, explore experiences, claim your tickets, and set off on your Sunflower Summer adventure! 

“This is such a great opportunity for families to get out and experience live theatre,” said Theatre in the Park’s Producing Artistic Director Tim Bair. “The best part… it’s free! And it’s easy too. Just sign up, then show up! Easy!” 

The Johnson County Museum is located at 8788 Metcalf Ave., Overland Park. For more about museum exhibits, programs, and events, go to jcprd.com/330/Museum. The Theatre in the Park’s outdoor summer performances take place in a beautiful amphitheater located inside Shawnee Mission Park with a separate entrance at 7710 Renner Road, in Shawnee. TIP is the largest outdoor community theater in the country and has been providing quality theater entertainment in the community for half a century! For more information about current performances, go to theatreinthepark.org.

The Johnson County Museum and Theatre in the Park are part of the Culture Division of the Johnson County Park and Recreation District.

FOR INFORMATION CONTACT: Mary McMurray, Johnson County Museum Director, [email protected], 913.715.2555 (o); 816.294.5677 (c)                                                          

 

Johnson County Museum wins national award of excellence

Congratulations to The Johnson County Museum for receiving the American Association of State and Local History’s 2021 Award of Excellence for its response to COVID-19. The museum’s pandemic response included a collecting initiative and temporary exhibition, a partner-supported community art exhibition and public programming, and educational programming with curriculum guides. 

The AASLH awards program was initiated in 1945 to establish and encourage standards of excellence in the collection, preservation, and interpretation of state and local history throughout the United States. This year, AASLH gave out 40 national awards honoring people, projects, exhibits, and publications. The winners represent the best in the field and provide leadership for the future of state and local history. More information is available in this news release.
 

Test your JoCo knowledge at Old Settlers

How much do you know about Johnson County? Come test your trivia skills with our Spin-to-Win wheel at Johnson County Old Settlers in downtown Olathe! We will have a booth at this event today, Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. each day. In addition to learning about the county, you’ll find experts on the upcoming 2020 Census who can answer your questions about what to expect next year, why participation is so important and how you can become a census worker.

Our booth is located just to the north of the Johnson County Administration Building (111 S. Cherry St., Olathe). Other county entities represented at this event include the Johnson County Election Office, Johnson County Sheriff’s Office and Emergency Management and Communications department. For more information on this event, please visit the Old Settlers website.