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Rec Commission starts fall programs
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The Great Bend Recreation Commission has begun its fall programming season with the theme "Come Outside and Play."

Director Diann Henderson and staff reported on August activities and what’s coming up this month when the GBRC Board of Directors met Monday. Fall brochures will be mailed today.

"We’ve transitioned from summer into fall," Henderson said.

Upcoming activities for special needs include bowling, craft programs, Lite & Lively exercise classes and a volleyball league.

Seniors have already had an Active Aging program this month in coordination with other agencies. Activities include Mexican Train Dominoes at the Senior Center and the STEPS exercise program, which had over 200 participants in August.

Sports is starting is adult volleyball and instructional soccer.

Leisure Programs Coordinator Garet Fitzpatrick said 35 people attended a hunter safety class last Saturday. "We’ll try to offer another class in November," he said. Other groups in the area are also offering hunter safety instruction, and staff at the office try to share that information when people call.

Fitzpatrick also reported the first Great Bend Middle School dance of the fall will be held Sept. 23, and GBRC is will help the Model Association of Central Kansas (MACK) hold a model airplane fly-in on Oct. 15.

Henderson reported enrollment for flag football was 119 children in grades 2-6; enrollment for outdoor soccer totaled 296 boys and girls in grades K-8; and 132 children in grades 1-6 enrolled in elementary volleyball.

The board approved a new cell phone policy that affects administrative employees when they are on call for emergencies. "They may choose to use their assigned phone for personal calls," Henderson said. However, "it is a fringe benefit ... and they’re going to be taxed for the entire monthly cost of that phone."

Administrators, who may receive emergency calls at all hours, requested the policy so they won’t have to carry two phones when they’re on call. Henderson said she checked what other agencies are doing and recommended this policy so the bookkeeper won’t have to go through the phone bills line by line.

GBRC is taking applications until Sept. 23 for a new coordinator of programs for special needs and senior citizens. The position was previously held by Linda Marqueling.

For the month of August, there were 4,917 people enrolled in GBRC programs. There were 8,010 participants, which includes 3,425 spectators. GBRC offered 903 hours of supervised activities.