Friday, January 10, 2014

Annual Report 2013: Recreation

The Recreation Department is located at 150 Emmons Street. The Recreation Department offers Franklin and Medway residents a variety of programs and events for youths and adults as well as coordination of youth sports organizations field use and coordination of maintenance at athletic fields. The department operates and schedules activities for Chilson Beach at Beaver Pond, Fletcher Field, Dennis Pisani Field (formally Theron Metcalf), Henry “Ski” Faenza Tot Lot (Nason Street Tot Lot), King Street Memorial Field, Dacey Community Field, and Meadowlark Lane Athletic Fields. The department is also responsible for scheduling the use of all school athletic fields during the summer, when school is not in session. Our department works closely with the various town youth sports organizations and Athletic Director Brad Sidwell to schedule all youth sports activities around the high school team practices and games.

This year, Chilson Beach was a busy place with over 3000 visitors utilizing the many functions of the pond. Canoeing, kayaking, swimming, fishing, and hiking were some of the activities available at Chilson Beach. We continue to operate soccer, football, boys lacrosse and cross country running on and around the turf field. The turf field was used for NFL Flag football, Pop Warner football, soccer, and lacrosse, as well as yoga for senior citizens, tai chi, boot camp, and many other recreational activities. A portable recycled plastic walkway was installed for handicap accessibility to the water and playground area. The Franklin High School soccer, lacrosse and field hockey programs play all of their home games on the turf field as well.

Summer Playground Program
An eight week playground program was held at Fletcher Field & Medway’s Choate Park from June 24-August 19 2012. The program hours were Monday-Friday from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm daily. Activities included: organized games, arts and crafts, water activities, sports, and weekly visitors. The themed weeks featured water slide Tuesday, a trip to Regal Cinema on Wednesdays, a giant slip and slide every Thursday, and Pizza day Fridays. The program grew this summer to over 800 registrants.

The Franklin Summer Playground Program Director this year was Kaitlyn Williamson. The Franklin Summer Playground Program staff included: Stefan and Erik Herlitz, Paul O’Donahue, Anne Versprille, Nicole Ellin, Jake Versprille, Brandon Kuzio and Vicky Rondeau.

The Medway Summer Playground Program Director was Becky Tingley. Their staff included, Arianna Burke, Bryany Burke, Kelly Dubowski, Alec Marshall and Matthew Harrington.

Youth Basketball Program
The Youth Basketball program continues to grow and now involves over 1,500 children, 162 teams, 310 coaches, and utilizes every school gymnasium in town. The Recreation department expanded its basketball program to include High School aged kids looking to
continue playing. This intramural program gives kids in grades 9-12 a chance to continue playing pick up basketball on Saturday nights. The program utilizes school gyms at Parmenter, Davis Thayer, Horace Mann Middle School, Remington Elementary, J.F.
Kennedy School, Keller Sullivan Middle School, and Franklin High School auxiliary gym.

This year the youth basketball program ran from November 11th-March 3rd on Saturdays. The FYBL is divided into ten divisions: Kindergarten (co-ed), 1st & 2nd Grade Boys, 1st & 2nd Grade Girls, 3rd & 4th Grade Boys, 3rd & 4th Grade Girls, 5th & 6th Grade
Boys & 5th & 6th Grade Girls, 7th & 8th Grade Boys, 7th & 8th Grade Girls and High School Intramural division.

This year, our coordinators were Steve Ellin 3rd and 4th Boys, Mike Vinson 3rd and 4th Girls, Mike Canesi and John Jette 5th and 6th Girls, Tim Saunders and Kevin O’Connell 5th and 6th Boys, Mark Marinelli 7th and 8th Girls, Steve Skaza 7th and 8th Boys, and Mike Vinson  It is because of these individuals and the volunteer coaches, that this program is a success. The K-4th grade leagues are set up as a non-competitive learning experience for the children with the focus on fundamental basketball skills. Grades 5th-8th grade basketball leagues start to teach the kids different rules, zone defense, pressing, and traits of competitive basketball. Ten players are drafted to each team and games are played weekly on Saturdays. Participation trophies are awarded to all Kindergarten through 4th grade players, and a “breakup” pizza party is held for all K-2nd grade players after the final game of the season.

Pee Wee Baseball
The Pee Wee Baseball program was created in 1999 by Director, Ryan Jette. Since then, the program has grown from 26 kids to 300 kids annually. Taking his lifelong baseball coaching experience coupled with past employment with Major League Baseball International, Ryan created a beginners baseball program that teaches kids the proper techniques of hitting, fielding, base running and throwing. This fun league features 4 practice sessions and 8 controlled games. The use of tees, soft bats and spongy balls make this program a safe and enjoyable start children ages 4-6 years old. Head Instructors Mike Massuer and Chris Reagan will be on site to run the drills, organize the scrimmages, and support the volunteer coaching staff.

Kid Care Babysitting
The Recreation Department continues to offer this 6-hour training program for kids ages 11-16 years old. Kelley Brooks teaches kids the business of babysitting while coordinating lectures on childcare, fire and police safety, nutrition, and diapering. Classes were offered monthly throughout the year and over 300 kids were introduced to the business of babysitting.

NFL Flag Football
The Recreation Department teamed up with the NFL to bring this non-contact flag football league to kids aged 6-14 years old. 482 kids signed up to play each Tuesday & Thursday evening at the Beaver Pond Turf Field. Reversible NFL game jerseys, playbooks, wristbands, belt/flag setup and access to the NFL Kids website gives kids the opportunity to follow their favorite player or team. Players learned the fundamentals of throwing, catching, running and teamwork. Punt, pass, and kick competition will allow
kids to showcase their skills in a competition against area youths.

Tennis Program
The Tennis program was expanded from a summer program to a three season (summer, fall and winter) program. The youth tennis instructional program was offered at the Franklin High School Courts. The six week program was under the supervision of Diane Reinertson, Drew Reinertson and Tighe Poirier. Classes were run at the Franklin High School tennis courts, Monday through Thursday for all skill levels. Over 300 children participated in our tennis program.

Golf Lessons
The Recreation Department expanded the golf lessons offered into the summer months, by offering a full or half day camp in the summer. The Recreation Department, in conjunction with Golf Professional, Mark Copithorne, offered Adult and Junior Golf instruction at the New England Country Club in South Bellingham. The lessons covered all aspects of the game of golf (putting, chipping, bunkers, irons, and woods). Registrants met one day a week for 6 weeks to practice their skills. Lessons were offered during the summer and fall season for over 340 residents attending. Express 2 day lessons were offered over April Vacation. Participants enjoyed playing the course following the six-week lesson to see what they learned.

The Recreation Department has been running the Girls lacrosse program since 2005. The program has grown from 28 girls to over 280 girls. Our teams participate in the Massachusetts Bay Girls Lacrosse League. There were four teams at the 1st-2nd grade division which was coached by Greg Tracy, Mike Wright, Mike Ryan, Kim Carney, Michelle Hess, Renee Tolonen, and Matt Hawkins. There were five teams at the 3rd and 4th Grade division, which were coached by Barry Regan, Mike Grasso, Ryan Jette, Tom O’Rourke, Matt Hawkins, Kevin O’Connor, Rob Atkinson, and Mark Goguen. There were three teams at the 5th and
6th Grade level, which was coached by John Jette, Heather MacCallum, Ted Mazukina, Mike Hanson, Charlie Clark, Kinjal Patel, John Grace, Mark Goguen and Rob Atkinson . And three teams at the 7th and 8th Grade level, which were coached by Roger Jette, Pete Lounsbury, Todd MacCallum, Jack Reardon, Paul DeStefano, Chris Schmidt and lots of FHS players . All levels had successful seasons and played in 8 regular season games. Franklin Girls Lacrosse is the largest girls lacrosse program in the state of Massachusetts.

Respectfully submitted,

Ryan Jette

Director of Recreation
Girls Lacrosse

Dacey Field
Dacey Field

The full annual report can be obtained from the Town Clerk's office (hard copy) or viewed and/or downloaded from the Franklin website here

Annual reports of prior years can also be found online at

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