Quarterly news from Parks & Recreation: New half-pipe, Halloween recap, basketball is back, and more

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image9 1Playing a Round

Whether it’s the traditional sport played with clubs or its cousin played with discs, the popularity of golf is soaring. 

Since 2019, there has been a 25 percent increase in the number of golf rounds played at the Derryfield Country Club. Over 35,000 rounds have been played this season alone. 

On a typical summer day, over 400 disc golfers now tackle one of our two courses at The Hollows. Diehards will continue to play right through the winter. 

Combined, our golf and disc golf courses account for over 150 acres of maintained recreational space in the heart of Manchester. We are proud to have been able to offer these healthy diversions throughout the pandemic. 

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Mark Gomez 

Chief of Parks, Recreation & Cemetery 

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Half-pipe construction at Rock Rimmon Park with basketball courts in the background.

Thrashers, Get Ready! 

Construction has commenced on the new skateboarding area at Rock Rimmon Park. Weather permitting, the new half-pipe and rail will be completed before the end of November. 

This is the final piece of the 2021 renovations to the park, which have also included a rebuilt basketball court, expanded parking, new lighting and additional walkways. 

We are excited for skateboarders in Manchester to have a place to practice and show off their skills. 

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View of Weston Tower during the recent Witch of Weston Tower event.

Witch of Weston Tower

McIntyre Ski Area, in association with the Manchester Historic Association and Manchester Parks & Rec, presented the Witch of Weston Tower on weekends throughout October. 

Over a thousand people enjoyed a ride from the base lodge at McIntyre up the mountain to Weston Observatory. Participants were able to climb the tower, meet the witch, play some games, and enjoy spectacular views of the colorful fall foliage. And over $1,000 was raised for the Manchester Historic Association. 

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Conceptual rendering of new Enright Park playground.

Playgrounds update

As part of our continuing effort to upgrade playgrounds across the city, Enright, Pine Island and Simpson parks are all slated to receive new playground equipment in 2022. 

Designs are being completed this fall and winter, with installation tentatively planned next summer. 

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Tennis in the Parks banner at the West High School Tennis Courts.

Tennis in the Parks

The 2021 Tennis in the Parks Program has come to a successful end, with our last fall session on October 16th. 

This year, we added an adult session to our traditional offerings for kids in grades 1 through 8. Overall, we had 94 participants. 

We would like to thank Chris Bouressa, 

program instructor, and Eric Driscoll of USTA New England for partnering with us to offer tennis lessons to the citizens of Manchester. We are looking forward to 2022! 

Screenshot 2021 11 16 2.20.25 AMManchester Basketball League

The Manchester Basketball League is embarking on its inaugural season. 

Parks & Rec is proud to support this youth recreational league created to offer Manchester’s youth a fun and instructional basketball experience. Players ages 4 to 17 are invited to join. 

Session 1 began on November 6. Session 2 starts on January 15. 

To register and get more information, visit manchesterbasketballeague.com

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A pick up game from 2019 at Saturday Basketball.

Saturday Winter Hoops Returns

After a Covid-induced hiatus last year, your favorite drop-in basketball program is back! 

Beginning December 4, Saturday Basketball will run throughout the winter. This is a non-competitive drop-in program for youth. We run pick-up games and other basketball skill games. 

You will be able to sign up at Beech St School on Saturdays. Program hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Each age group has its own 90-minute block: 

7-8 years old 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. 

9-10 years old 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. 

11-12 years old 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. 

13-17 years old 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m

For more information, email parks@manchesternh.gov

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Frank the Tank receives an enthusiastic introduction from Maintenance Supervisor Josh Caswell.

Employees Corner 

We are pleased to introduce our newest employee, known affectionately as “Frank the Tank.” 

Nicknames aside, Frank is not “old school” at all — he’s a line-marking robot who can paint athletic fields with speed and precision, freeing up his Parks & Rec colleagues to focus on other tasks. 

Although quiet and reserved, Frank has won the trust of his fellow employees. We expect him to be a valuable member of the team for years to come.

Ice Arenas 

The JFK Coliseum and West Side Ice Arena are open for the season. There are many ways to enjoy our ice arenas. Check out a few below. 


Public Skate 

Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM Saturdays & Sundays 2 to 4 p.m. 

$5 Adults 

$3 Children/Seniors 

$5 Skate Rental *Only available on weekends* Cash only 

West Side Arena 

Stick and Puck 

Monday through Friday 

9 a.m. to 11 a.m. 

$7. If under 16, must be accompanied by an adult. Goalies skate for free. Cash only 

For private hockey or ice skating rentals, email parks@manchesternh.gov or call 603-624-6444.

Pumpkin Carving Competition 

Parks & Rec hosted the inaugural Manchester Pumpkin Carving Competition this fall and received 32 amazing entries! 

Competitors were divided into groups by age. The public voted to determine the winners. 

Congratulations to our pumpkin carving champions:

Natalie R., Kyleigh J., and Ariel H. 

And thank you to all who participated!

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The Fit Lot at Derryfield Park

Fit Lot of Fun

Our Fit Lot Fitness Program at Derryfield Park has come to an end. Our 8-week circuit was designed to teach people of all ages and abilities how to approach workouts safely and effectively. 

We were able to partner with Granite YMCA in this endeavor. The YMCA provided certified instructors for the spring and fall sessions. Be on the lookout during the winter for 2022 dates. 

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A group in action during the Manchester Derby Youth Soccer Clinic.

Manchester Derby, NH Style 

Over 80 kids from across Manchester came to Gill Stadium on November 4 to enjoy the Manchester Derby Youth Soccer Clinic. 

Produced in partnership with NBC Sports Network and the National Center of Excellence, this event featured drills run by elite coaches, T-shirt and scarf giveaways, and great fun for all participants. 

The event was held in anticipation of the rivalry match between Manchester City and Manchester United in our namesake city in England. Manchester City prevailed 2-0. 


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City Parks and Rec Department