On May 20, 2017, Roanoke Parks and Recreation hosted a free, family-friendly Kids to Parks Day festival in Wasena Park. The three-hour festival attracted more than 1,000 people, compared to 500 attendees in 2015. Mayor Sherman Lea welcomed guests and proclaimed that May 20, 2017, was Roanoke’s Kids to Parks Day.
There were three bouncy castles and an inflatable basketball station, a magician, face painters, slacklines, bubble soccer balls, a pixie bike race course, a coloring station, food trucks, music, and an outdoor scavenger hunt. More than 60 families participated in the scavenger hunt, which took place on the Roanoke River greenway and throughout the park. Parents and children worked together to uncover clues and navigate the scavenger hunt.
Kids to Parks Day is a nationwide celebration of healthy, outdoor play that encourages families to visit a local park. The annual initiative is organized by National Park Trust in cooperation with 30 national collaborators. In 2017, Roanoke was one of 1,700 communities to host #KidstoParks events and more than one million people celebrated nationwide.
Roanoke Parks and Recreation plans to host another Kids to Parks Day festival on May 19, 2018.