July is here, which means it’s Parks and Recreation Month! We can’t wait to share all the fun we have planned, so here are five great ways to celebrate with us this month. Psst…the best part is, they’re all FREE!
1. Freedom First Festival
Start your Parks & Rec Month off with a bang (literally) by joining us at the Freedom First Festival on Sunday, July 3! From 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Elmwood Park will be full of free activities including an inflatable obstacle course, bounce house, giant slide, rock climbing wall, cornhole, lawn games, and face painting. There will also be free live music in the amphitheater from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Food and beverage will be available for purchase throughout the day. Starting at 5:00 p.m, Sugar Ray will be headlining the Elmwood Stage with DJ Flex opening. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door (children 12 and under get in free). The show will wrap up around 8:30 p.m., giving you plenty of time to make your way to the fireworks above River’s Edge Park, starting at 9:30 p.m. Full event details and FAQ’s can be found at www.playroanoke.com/freedomfirstfestival.
2. Floatilla to Starr Hill-a!
It doesn’t quite feel like summer without a group float on the river, so we’re joining forces with our friends at Roanoke Outside for a Floatilla on July 24. Grab anything that floats and make your way downriver to Starr Hill Brewery as part of our giant, floating crew! Starr Hill will be keeping the good vibes flowing by donating $1 from every beer sold in the can garden to PLAY Roanoke. Tell your friends, and don’t forget the sunscreen! More details here.
3. Curious George at Elmwood Park
Mill Mountain Theater will be bringing Curious George: The Golden Meatball to the Elmwood Park stage for a free show this month. PLAY Roanoke is so excited for this live, musical performance featuring your favorite inquisitive monkey. Join George on a fun-filled adventure in which he learns about Rome, meatballs, and the secret ingredient to cooking! The show begins at 2:00 p.m. on July 10, more details here.
4. Hunt for Noké
Noké the Gnome is back with more fun in honor of Parks & Rec Month! Starting July 18, Noké will be hiding in one of our city parks, and it will be your job to find him. We’ll share a new clue each day on our social media, and the clever winner will snag a prize pack with PLAY Roanoke merch and a $100 gift card! Keep your eyes peeled and follow us on Instagram and Facebook for the clues!
5. Volunteer Opportunities
Show the love during Parks & Rec Month by joining us as a volunteer. Give back to some of our most well-loved public spaces by joining the Trails & Greenways crew for a trail work day at Carvins Cove or one of two greenway work days. Projects include armoring the Enchanted Forest Trail (July 12), cleanup along the Lick Run Greenway (July 14), and staining fences on the Roanoke River Greenway (July 19). You can also volunteer at the Freedom First Festival/Sugar Ray concert (July 3) or the WAR + Commodores concert (July 30). Sign up for Trail & Greenway workdays here, or events/concerts here.
But wait, there’s more!
We’re also offering free entry at Washington Park Pool every Monday this summer. While this isn’t officially for Parks & Rec month, it’s certainly a great way to celebrate! We’ll also have our regularly scheduled programming throughout the month with options like paddling excursions, yoga programs, gardening, and more. There are a lot of ways to celebrate this month, so get out there and PLAY Roanoke!