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johnson county recreation
While people in Johnson County work hard, they like their downtime as well, and we offer many wonderful places for individuals and families to learn, play, relax, be active, and enjoy the outdoors. Johnson County’s dozens of parks, recreation facilities, lakes, and public gardens offer something for everyone. Checkout one of Johnson County’s 13 libraries, spend an afternoon at the Johnson County Museum, or when the weather is warm enjoy a movie or Broadway show at Theatre in The Park. Our recreational amenities play a huge role in Johnson County being a community of choice.

Recreation News

50 Plus, Overland Park, Plan Veterans Day Event on Nov. 10

The Johnson County Park & Recreation District's 50 Plus Department is again teaming with the city of Overland Park to offer Veteran's Day activities on Monday, Nov. 10, at the Matt Ross Community Center, 8101 Marty, Overland Park.

Participants can join members of the color guard at 8:30 a.m. as they raise the flag and honor veterans. Next up is a line-up of patriotic musical presentations. Enjoy a delicious pancake breakfast  from Chris Cakes and veterans eat free. For family members and members of the public, there will be a $5 charge for breakfast. To find this program in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under 50 Plus and then under special events. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “celebration.”

With the exception of breakfast for non-veterans, there is no charge for this two-hour program, but reservations are required and can be made by calling (913) 642-6410 by Nov. 3. Interpretive services and other accommodations for those with special needs are available and should be requested at time of registration.

 

Ernie Miller Park Owl Prowl offered on Nov. 8 & 9

Great horned, barred, and screech owls make their homes in Ernie Miller Park. Come learn more about these fascinating birds during the Johnson County Park & Recreation District's Ernie Miller Nature Park Owl Prowl offered on Nov. 8 and 9. Another session on Nov. 7 has already filled.

The district's Outdoor Education Staff will lead an informative talk featuring live owls. This will be followed by a hike into the night environment. You never know whooo you might spot! Come dressed for the weather. A cup of hot cider will conclude the hike. The program is for ages five and up when accompanied by an adult.

To find this program 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 keyword “birding.”

This one-session program is offered at Ernie Miller Park, 909 N. Kansas 7 Highway, Olathe. The program begins at 7 p.m. and is offered on Saturday, Nov. 8; and Sunday, Nov. 9. The cost  for one 90-minute session is $8 per person for Johnson County residents or $9 for nonresidents. Preregistration is required.

The JCPRD's Activities catalog, with information and a registration form, is available for pickup at all Johnson County Library branches. For more information or  to register, call (913) 831-3359. To register online and for updated program listings, see the District's website at www.jcprd.com.

Animal Tales Storytime sessions continue on Nov. 5 & 19 at Ernie Miller Nature Center

The fall/winter season of Animals Tales Storytime sessions will continue during November at the Johnson County Park & Recreation District's Ernie Miller Nature Center in Olathe. Young children and their parents are invited to come listen and learn on  Nov. 5 & 19.

Animal Tales Storytime  is for ages two to six. All children must be accompanied by an adult. This program will feature stories, songs, and surprises. Participants will also get to meet a special animal friend at each session. Animal Tales Storytime was one of the many programs cited when the Ernie Miller Nature Center won an Oracle Award for Organizational Service and Leadership in the South Central Region from the National Storytelling Network in 2011. To find this program in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under preschool and then under nature & outdoors. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “storytelling.”

November sessions  take place beginning at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesdays and include a program with the theme "Animal Peek-a-boo" on Nov. 5 and "Turkeys are Terrific" on Nov. 19. The final two fall /winter storytime sessions are scheduled for:  Dec. 3 ("Winter Weather"); and Dec. 17 ("A Visit With Santa").

The cost per 30-minute session is $2 per person, including adults, payable at the event. Advance registrations are not necessary for this program.

Ernie Miller Nature Center is located at 909 N. Kansas-7 Highway, Olathe. For more information, contact the Nature Center at (913) 764-7759.

JCPRD 50 Plus Bingo continues on Nov. 4 & 19

Two themed bingo sessions at two locations are being planned during November by the 50 Plus Department of the Johnson County Park & Recreation District.

"America" is the theme for a bingo session which will take place on  Nov. 4 at the New Century Fieldhouse, 551 New Century Parkway, near Gardner. "Kansas City" is the theme for a session which will take place on Nov. 19  at the Matt Ross Community Center, 8101 Marty St., Overland Park.

Each session will begin at 1:30 p.m. and will feature a dozen games of bingo, as well as food, prizes, and fun. Prizes range from gift certificates to local restaurants to gift packs. The cost for each two-hour program  is $5 per person for Johnson County residents or $6 for nonresidents. Advance registration is required. Please RSVP by calling (913) 831-3359. Participants can pay in advance or at the door.

December 50 Plus Bingo programs being planned include: "Winter Bluster" on Dec. 1 at the Sunset Building, 11811 S. Sunset Dr., Olathe; "Frosty & Friends" on Dec. 11 at the Roeland Park Community Center, 4850 Rosewood Dr., Roeland Park; "White Elephant" on Dec. 17 at Tomahawk Ridge; and "Gift Wrapped" on Dec. 19 at the Mill Creek Activity Center, 6518 Vista Dr., Shawnee.

To find these programs in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under 50 Plus and then under enrichment & special interests. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “games.”

While the JCPRD’s 50 Plus programs are primarily for people who are age 50 or older, interested parties who have not yet reached that magic age may still be able to attend. Persons 18 and older who are interested in a 50 Plus class are invited to call the District’s Registration Department at (913) 831-3359, and if space is available without forfeiting the place of a person over 50, their registration can be taken.

The JCPRD Activities catalog, with information and a registration form, is available for pickup at all Johnson County Library branches. For more information  or to register, call (913) 831-3359. To register online and for updated program listings, visit the district’s website at www.jcprd.com.

50 Plus Day Trip promises participants a Ghost Tour in Excelsior Springs

Embark on a Halloween adventure to Excelsior Springs, Mo., and the historic Elms Resort during an Oct. 31day trip being planned by the 50 Plus Department of the Johnson County Park & Recreation District.

The trip is called Ghost Tour and will include eerie tales and stories about the famous people who have stayed at - and perhaps never fully left - this famous hotel located north of Kansas City. Participants will enjoy lunch and a Halloween treat at the Ventana Gourmet Grill in downtown Excelsior Springs, before visiting the city's Hall of Waters and the Excelsior Springs Museum for more spooky fun. This trip will involve some walking and stairs.

To find this trip in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under 50 plus and then under travel. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search, look for the keywords “day trip.”

This trip will leave at 9 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 31, from Antioch Park, 6501 Antioch, Merriam, and return at approximately 5 p.m. The cost is $79 per person and includes lunch. Organizers anticipate this tour will fill, so register early!

While JCPRD’s 50 Plus programs are primarily for people who are age 50 or older, interested parties who have not yet reached that magic age may still be able to attend. Persons 18 and older who are interested in a 50 Plus class are invited to call the District’s Registration Department at (913) 831-3359, and if space is available without forfeiting the place of a person over 50, their registration can be taken.

The JCPRD’s Activities catalog, with information and a registration form, is available for pickup at all Johnson County Library branches. For more information or to register, call (913) 831-3359. For updated program listings, visit the District’s website at www.jcprd.com.

Halloween Dance with costume contest for 50 Plus is Oct. 31 at MRCC

Music by the Playboys provides the backdrop for a ghoulish good time at a new Halloween Dance being planned by the 50 Plus Department of the Johnson County Park and Recreation District.

This event will take place on Friday, Oct. 31, at the Matt Ross Community Center, 8101 Marty, Overland Park.  Prizes will be awarded for the best costume and best spooky appetizer of desert! Every dancer will receive a treat bag at the door and door prizes will also be awarded.   To find this program in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under 50 plus and then under special events. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “dance.”

This event will begin at 2 p.m. The cost for this two-hour event is $5 per person.

While the JCPRD's 50 Plus programs are primarily for people who are age 50 or older, interested parties who have not yet reached that magic age may still be able to attend. Persons 18 and older who are interested in a 50 Plus class are invited to call the District's Registration Department at (913) 831-3359, and if space is available without forfeiting the place of a person over 50, their registration can be taken.

The JCPRD’s Activities catalog, with information and a registration form, is available for pickup at all Johnson County Library branches. To register or for more information  or to register, call (913) 831-3359. For updated program listings, visit the District’s website at www.jcprd.com.

 

Neighbor’s Place Potluck set for Oct. 28 at Roeland Park Community Center

Join your friends or meet new ones at a Neighbor’s Place Potluck being planned in late October by the 50 Plus Department of the Johnson County Park & Recreation District.

The Neighbor’s Place is a room within the Roeland Park Community Center where congregate meals are served to participants 50 and older each week day by the Johnson County Area Agency on Aging. Once every other month, this group and others from the community get together and enjoy a night to socialize and dine together. Each participant is asked to bring an item to share. To find this program in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under 50 plus and then under special events. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “potluck.”

This two-hour event will begin at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 28. This event is free, but call (913) 826-3160 to RSVP and to sign up for your dish. The Roeland Park Community Center is located at 4850 Rosewood Dr., Roeland Park.

While JCPRD’s 50 Plus programs are primarily for people who are age 50 or older, interested parties who have not yet reached that magic age may still be able to attend. Persons 18 and older who are interested in a 50 Plus program are invited to call the District’s Registration Department at (913) 831-3359, and if space is available without forfeiting the place of a person over 50, their registration can be taken.

The JCPRD’s Activities catalog, with information and a registration form, is available for pickup at all Johnson County Library branches. For more information  or to register, call (913) 831-3359. For updated program listings, visit the District’s website at www.jcprd.com.

JCPRD Children's Services Department conducting Halloween-themed canned goods drive Oct. 27-31

Students enrolled in the Johnson County Park & Recreation District's 27 After School Programs will Trick-or-Treat for canned goods instead of candy again this year. On the Friday before Halloween, they will be going door to door, escorted by staff, into the neighborhoods around their schools to solicit donations for area food pantries.  These kids want to do something to stop hunger.

This program is called Trick or Treat So Others Can Eat. Assistance from the general public is also sought as collections boxes will be placed at three JCPRD locations from Oct. 27 through 31. Those sites are: Building A, Antioch Park, 6501 Antioch, Merriam; the Administration Building in Shawnee Mission Park, 7904 Renner Road, Shawnee, and the New Century Fieldhouse, 551 New Century Parkway near Gardner. Among the most-needed food items are: canned soup, vegetables, fruit, and meats, boxed meals, peanut butter and jelly and hot and cold cereal.

Afterschool sites in the Shawnee Mission School District will be donating their collections to the Feed the Need campaign.  Afterschool sites in the Gardner and De Soto school districts will be donating their canned goods to their respective local food pantries, which are both in dire need of contributions.

For more information, contact Gardner Children's Services Specialist Lisa Hughes at (913) 856-2493.

Jo Ho the Storyteller Returns -- Wednesday, October 15

"Me aimage of JoHo the Storyteller with a young child and fun props for storytellingnd My Imagination"

Designed to enrich children’s imaginations, Jo uses the art of storytelling and silly songs to get kiddo’s bodies moving and voices chiming along. Each story is brought to life with clever homemade costumes and props. Children will be delighted to dress up in “Whimsical Wit!”

Fee: FREE.

Note: The grant received from Target has expired so the  Museum is no longer able to offer the free books during this event.

Registration: Drop-in for families. Groups of ten or more must pre-register. Call (913) 715-2552 to register.

This year's Mildale Farm Fall Fest set for Oct. 25

Bring the family and spend the day exploring the Mildale Farm property and enjoying a number of activities during the annual free Mildale Farm Fall Fest being planned by the Johnson County Park & Recreation District for Oct. 25.

The event is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will give interested parties access to the 158-acre site including the 22-acre rental property in southwest Johnson County as well as to about 136 acres which are actually part of the adjacent 578 acres of agricultural property, all of which was purchased by the district in 2005. Visitors will be directed to park in the large parking lot near Mildale Farm's main barn.

To find this program 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 “family fun.”

A number of fall-related activities are being planned for the event, all of which will be free to the public. A large pumpkin patch will be situated in front of the main barn. Children 12 and under can pick out a pumpkin. Cider and hot cocoa will be provided in the barn, as will information on other District programs and activities. A tractor-drawn shuttle will take visitors to a fire circle in the south-central portion of the Mildale site, where they can roast marshmallows and enjoy storytelling. A putting green with kid-sized clubs is also available and horse-drawn hayrides are planned.

Catch-and-release fishing in any or all of seven ponds within the 158-acre area will also be offered during Fall Fest. While District fishing permits have been waived for this event, Kansas residents ages 16 to 74 and nonresidents 16 and older need to have a Kansas state fishing license.

Visitors can also explore and picnic on the grounds. Restrooms will be available, but the property's two homes and other outbuildings will not be open during this event. The centerpiece of the Mildale Farm property is the high-quality equestrian-style barn, which features peg construction and a hand-laid brick floor. Though designed with an equestrian motif, the barn has never been used for keeping animals and has been utilized as a rental location for social functions, including weddings, family gatherings, and other social and business events. Inquiries regarding information or reservations for Mildale Farm should be directed to Sarah Vogelsberg at (913) 826-2957.

Rules for this event will be posted and will be the same as park rules in place on other District properties. Among them: no alcohol is allowed, pets must be on-leash, and vehicles must remain on roadways. Park Police will be on hand to enforce these as well as the catch-and-release fishing provision.

Mildale Farm is located at 35250 W. 199th St.  From the north, take Interstate 35 south to Exit 205, Homestead Lane. Turn right to 199th Street. Turn left on 199th and follow to Mildale Farm which will be on your right. From the south, take Interstate 35 north to Exit 205, Homestead Lane. Turn left to 199th Street. Turn left on 199th and follow to Mildale Farm which will be on your right.

Upcoming Events

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October 21, 2014 | 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm

50 Plus Travel Show

October 22, 2014 | 9:00 am to 11:00 am

Pop 'n Play at the Johnson County Museum

October 25, 2014 | 9:00 am to 2:00 pm

Mildale Farm Fall Fest

October 25, 2014 | 10:00 am to 12:00 pm

Trick-or-Cache

October 25, 2014 | 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm

Etiquette for Girls & Boys