Recs and Reads
By Anne McKay Garris
Once upon a time there was a recreation center. Day and night, up until reasonable bedtimes, of course, the recreation center rang with children's voices. Youngsters from the age of four or five, all the way through high school gathered on a regular basis to enjoy the company of others of their kind. They ran, they played, they had fun and good exercise together. They learned to cooperate, to give and take and to interact with other young people. It was a happy, busy recreation center.
But that was a long time ago and times, I'm told, have a way of changing and so, now, the recreation center is still there but the children are not. Some say there are no more children. Others say the children have moved on to other interests, like T.V. and organized sports, and text messaging, and no longer need a recreation center.
Maybe, maybe not, maybe what the old recreation center needs is some Christmas elves. Elves who, perhaps remember their own happy times at the Center. Elves who know that the laughter and interaction of games and fun with other children is still important in their development.
Maybe these Elves will take note of the need and offer to be a part of the Friends of the Clearwater Beach Library and Recreation Center effort to find a way to plan and execute programs so the children of the Clearwater Islands - seen everywhere else but at the Rec Center - can find to their liking.
One or two Elves, for instance, could start with enabling the Wii games already scheduled on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 3 to 5 p.m. These are computer games, easy to learn, and possible to enjoy regardless of skills.
I can remember, years and years ago, when I was in charge of the young people's group at the Chapel-By-The-Sea. During Sunday evening supper, I often found myself tired, discouraged and fretting over the coming week. Nevertheless, I wound my way to church where there was always a game of volleyball. As I laughed at the young people's crazy stunts in pretense of a volleyball game, I felt the tiredness and discouragement melt away and went home, ready for the coming week. That's the fun of being an elf.
If you want to be a Christmas elf that gives all year long, let us know by e-mail at email@example.com, or call Friends president Pat Power at 446-0929. Merry Christmas!
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