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Park and Recreation

Phone: 913-438-7275

7900 Renner Road, Shawnee, KS 66219

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park and recreation

For more than 50 years, the Johnson County Park & Recreation District has provided high-quality parks, park services and recreational programs in more than 6,000 acres of parkland and open green space. Each year, the District records more than 7 million park visitors and nearly 1.5 million recreation participations in over 4,000 programs. The District's contributions to the personal lives of Johnson County's citizens have earned the District local appreciation and national acclaim.

Department News

Ernie Miller Nature Center offers live animal programs for groups
December 30, 2016

Five nature programs featuring live birds or animals are being offered for groups by the Ernie Miller Nature Center, 909 North Kansas-7 Highway, Olathe, or at your location in Kansas. The programs are called Wildlife Who's Who, Wildlife Webs, Snakes Alive, Birds of Prey, and Whooo Are The Owls, and are presented by Johnson County Park & Recreation District outdoor education staff members.

To find these programs in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under youth and then under nature & outdoors. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search, look for the keywords “wildlife presentations.”

Each program lasts approximately 45 minutes and can be presented at the Ernie Miller Nature Center or at another location.

Birds of Prey is for grade four and older. This program will feature live examples of these majestic raptors. Participants will get a close-up look at the special adaptations that make birds of prey some of nature's best hunters.

Snakes Alive is a live snake presentation in which participants will explore the facts and fallacies of these legless wonders of the natural world. This program is for grade two and older.

Wildlife Who's Who is for grade four and older. Participants will meet native examples of an amphibian, reptile, bird, and mammal, and discover their similarities and differences.

Wildlife Webs is for grades one through three. Participants will meet a  amphibian, reptile, bird, and mammal. Learn about their interrelationship with food chains in Kansas environments.

Whooo Are The Owls is for grades one through three. Students will observe the structures of the owl and learn how these help the owl live nocturnally. Discover the needs and life cycles of these unique animals. Touch and examine wings, feathers, and talons. Identify the owls by real calls and see an owl pellet.

Cost for presentation of any of these programs for your group at the Ernie Miller Nature Center for one to 15 people  is $38 for Johnson County residents or $41 for nonresidents. For 16 to 35 people, the cost is $45 for Johnson County residents or $49  for nonresidents. The cost  for any presentation at your location for one to 35 people is $62 for Johnson County residents or $66 for nonresidents. The cost for each additional consecutive session is $45 for Johnson County residents or $49  for nonresidents.

The center's live animal programs are available in Kansas only. For more information or to schedule a program, call the Ernie Miller Nature Center at (913) 764-7759.

Roeland Park Aquatic Center to be closed until late January
December 21, 2016

The main pool at the Roeland Park Aquatic Center has been closed and will remain closed until a new dome heater can be installed. Officials hope the new heater will arrive the week of Jan. 16, with a reopening expected the week of Jan. 23. The closure means that all programs, including drop-in open swim times and planned holiday swim hours, have been cancelled.

The Roeland Park Aquatic Center is located at 4843 Rosewood Dr., Roeland Park. The facility, which first opened in 1997, is owned by the city of Roeland Park and is operated by the Johnson County Park and Recreation District. 

Sunday Family Series begins Jan. 8 at Ernie Miller Nature Center
December 14, 2016

Bring the family to the Johnson County Park & Recreation District’s Ernie Miller Nature Center in January for Sunday Afternoon Nature Programs. Presentations  begin at 2 p.m., last about 45 minutes, and are designed for all ages. A charge of $3 per person, payable at the site, helps cover the cost of the programs; children under two  are free.

January presentations will include:

Jan. 8: Whose Scat is That? - Ever stepped in smelly scat from an animal and thought, “Yuck, whose poop is that?”  Yes, I said poop.  If you want to be scientific, call it scat. All scat tells a story; unlock the hidden secrets of an animal’s life. Learn to identify our local critters by their scat and tracks.  See live animals that make the nature center their home.

Jan. 15: Birds of Prey - By day or night, out of the sky flies a rodent’s nightmare, the birds of prey. Join our interpretive staff as they show why rodents fear these great birds. Using live birds, participants will see up close examples of these magnificent raptors and their special adaptations.

Jan. 22: Being Bold in the Cold  - Take a different look at some of the not-so-glamorous animals found in our park such as spiders, snakes, and skunks. These critters may not be loveable to all, but learn why they are important to our lifestyles and environment. Live snakes and spiders will be displayed.

Jan. 29: Kansas Symbols  - Celebrate Kansas’ Statehood Day, January 29!  Can you name the Kansas Symbols?  See some of the natural symbols live and in person, including live animals.

The Sunday Family series will continue in February with the following presentations: Feb. 5, Predators on the Prowl; Feb. 12, Snakes Alive; Feb. 19, Nature Photography Fun; and Feb. 26, Wildlife Webs.

The Ernie Miller Nature Center is owned and operated by the Johnson County Park & Recreation District and is located at 909 N. Kansas 7 Highway, Olathe.

To find these programs in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under fun for all and then under special events. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search, look for the keywords “nature programs.” For more information on the Sunday Nature Programs, call (913) 764-7759.

 

Free Coffee with the Birds program offered on Tuesday mornings beginning Jan. 3 at Ernie Miller Nature Center
December 14, 2016

Come enjoy winter bird watching from the comfort of an indoor wildlife viewing room during an informal program being offered for ages 18 and older at the Johnson County Park & Recreation District's Ernie Miller Nature Center.

With the lack of foliage and increased sight distance, winter is a great time for bird watching. Chickadees, woodpeckers, juncos, cedar waxwings, and many more are commonly seen at the center's feeders.

This free nine-week program is called Coffee with the Birds and involves an invitation to interested parties to come sit, visit, and drink free coffee as they watch birds at the nature center's feeders between 9 and 10:30 a.m. on Tuesdays between Jan. 3 and Feb. 28. No registration or reservations are required, and participants can come and go as they please.

To find this program in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under adult and then under nature & outdoors. In the printed catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “birding.”

The JCPRD's Activities catalog is available for pickup at all Johnson County Library branches.

 

Register on or before Jan. 31 to receive the lowest registration fee for the tenth annual JCPRD Women’s Triathlon & Duathlon in September 2017
December 9, 2016

September 2017 may seem like a long ways off, but it's not too early to start planning your fitness goals for next year.  Register on or before Jan. 31 to secure your spot in the 2017 JCPRD Women's Triathlon & Duathlon at 2016 prices. This tenth-annual event will take place on Saturday, Sept. 9, at Kill Creek Park, 11670 Homestead Lane, Olathe.

This event consists of a Super Sprint Triathlon, a Sprint Triathlon and a Duathlon. Girls and women ages 11 and up can compete in the Super Sprint Triathlon course which is a 200 meter swim, a 4 mile bike and a 2 mile run. The Sprint Triathlon course is a 500 meter swim, followed by a 10.6 mile bike and a 3.1 mile run.  The Duathlon Course will consist of a 3.1 mile run, followed by a 10.6 bike, and a 3.1 mile run. Sprint Triathlon and Duathlon courses are for women 16 and over.

This event is USA Triathlon-sanctioned, and the Sprint Triathlon and Duathlon are open to teams, while the Super Sprint Triathlon is open only to individuals. To register for this race, go to www.jcprd.com/activities/special-events.cfm.

Started in 2008, the JCPRD Women’s Triathlon is the first all-women’s triathlon sanctioned by the United States of America Triathlon Committee in the state of Kansas, and is a special event of the Johnson County Park & Recreation District. It was recognized in 2009 as the Kansas Recreation and Park Association’s Outstanding New Program. This event is limited to 450 participants and is expected to fill, so early registration is encouraged.

On or before Jan. 31, registration fees for the Sprint Triathlon are $70 for individuals and $95 for teams. After Feb. 1 and until May 1, the cost is $75 for individuals and $100 for teams. From May 2 through Sept. 1, the cost is $85 for individuals and $110. After Sept. 1, the cost is $95 for individuals and $120 for teams.

For the Super Sprint Triathlon, which is open only to individuals, registration fees are $50 per person until May 1. From May 2 through Sept. 1, the cost is $60 per person, and this increases to $70 after Sept. 1.

On or before Jan. 31, registration fees for the duathlon are $60 for individuals and $90 for teams. After Feb. 1 and until May 1, the cost is $65 for individuals and $95 for teams. From May 2 through Sept. 1, the cost is $75 for individuals and $105. After Sept. 1, the cost is $85 for individuals and $115 for teams.

Everyone who registers by Sept. 1 is guaranteed an event T-shirt. In addition, participants, including team members, must also be members of USA Triathlon. One-day adult memberships are $15 and annual memberships are $50.  Youth annual memberships are $10.

For additional information about this event, call Katy at (913) 826-2964.

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