The city of Cleveland
Zone Recreation Center basketball courts
yesterday announced that summer recreation activities and sports will resume this year while abiding by safety guidelines including masking and distancing.
That will include putting rims back on basketball hoops throughout city parks, which were removed early in the pandemic to deter gathering in groups, and reopening playgrounds, which have technically been closed about as long. City pools will reopen for the summer after being closed last year and Cleveland will begin issuing permits for baseball fields and restarting camps.
“These kids just need somewhere to be,” Public Works Director Michael Cox told Cleveland.com
. “This will give them some structure.”
“Everything we’re doing, we’re going to do with the RestartOhio or the CDC guidelines that are in place for all these activities,” Cox added during a virtual press conference.
Parents across the country, and locally, have been frustrated with the closure of what felt like safe outdoor recreation venues for kids and teens
last year while stores remained open, not to mention golf courses and private tennis courts and the likes, out of reach financially and physically for many residents. While rec centers in Cleveland began to reopen in May, at the same time that private gyms and yoga studios, access was and remains severely restricted and set on an advanced schedule with regimented timeslots. Competitive high school sports including basketball, meanwhile, have gone on under state guidelines.
Cox said permitting for smaller outdoor events like family picnics will also likely resume soon though plans for larger events remain on hold.