Since 1992, our Alliance has sponsored a range of free youth programs at Randall’s Island Park, which has given thousands of community children the opportunity to go outside and play in the great outdoor right in the middle of New York City. In coming years, and with your help, we hope to reach even more children.
RIPA believes it is important to give children the opportunity to exercise and learn about healthy living. We sponsor a number of youth programs, which are all provided to children free of charge. RIPA currently sponsors: the Jesse Owens Track & Field Program, the RIPA Summer Camp, dance fitness classes, a tennis program and a golf program. The Jesse Owens Track & Field Program and RIPA Summer Camp are after-school/summer programs. The dance fitness classes and tennis and golf programs are held during school hours and meant to be incorporated into children’s educational/physical fitness program by teachers and school staff.
Jesse Owens Track & Field Program
The Jesse Owens Track & Field Program is an after-school instructional program in Track & Field, geared towards teaching and practicing the fundamentals of the sport. Five coaches teach participants ages 7-14 the basics of sprinting, distance running, relays, high jump, long jump, and hurdles. Additionally, age-appropriate health lessons, provided by Mount Sinai Medical Center, are distributed each week for review and discussion. This RIPA sponsored program runs both in the fall and spring Monday through Thursday from 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm. Approximately 800 children are currently enrolled in this program.
RIPA Summer Camp
During our six week program in July and August, approximately 350 children a day are given the opportunity to escape city life and enjoy some time outside playing on Randall’s Island. With the help and supervision of RIPA camp counselors and staff, children partake in a number of sports and activities including playing tennis at the new world class Sportime tennis center, learning to swing a golf club at a first class golf center, running on the track at Icahn Stadium and learning about nature at Randall’s Islands wetlands.
Dance Fitness Classes
RIPA offers Latin/aerobic-style dance classes geared to teaching students actual dance routines while offering an aerobic workout. Classes are taught by an RIPA instructor in Icahn Stadium’s dance studio, which has mirrored walls, ballet bars and resilient floors. Three sessions are offered each year: October through December, January through March, and April through June (Tuesdays and Thursdays (10:00 am-11:30 am and 11:30 am-1 pm)). At the end of the session, performances are held where participants demonstrate the dances they have learned.
RIPA, has partnered with Sportime, to offer tennis instruction to children. At the new state-of-the-art Sportime tennis center on Randall’s Island, Sportime coaches teach children the fundamentals of tennis and provide all necessary equipment. Three sessions are offered each year: October through December, January through March, and April through June (Wednesdays and Fridays (10:30 am-12 pm)).
RIPA, has partnered with the Randall’s Island Golf Center, to offer children a chance to play miniature golf. The miniature golf program is designed for younger children. While all equipment is provided, there is no formal instruction given; however, teachers and school staff often design their own programs using the 36-hole course.
Wetlands Stewardship Program
The Randall’s Island Wetlands Stewardship Program teaches children about wetland ecology and enables children to experience nature through hands-on learning. During the field trip, students will have the chance to explore a restored salt marsh or freshwater wetland with one of our knowledgeable Natural Areas Crew members. Ultimately, students will gain a greater respect for the environment and a greater understanding of what it means to be an environmental steward
In addition to the programs RIPA sponsors for children, Randall’s Island is also the host to many Field Days. Schools and community base organizations can come to Randall’s Island to host their sports/field days. Our new fields can accommodate as many as 600 students for a field day. Schools are given multiple fields, which they can organize for play as they see fit.
For more information about any of our Youth Programs please call 212-860-2031.