September 15, 2020

All Community Centers opening by the end of September

City of Akron Press Release
From the desk of Ellen Lander Nischt
Published: 09-15-2020

Akron, Ohio, September 15, 2020 — Today, Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan is announcing upcoming openings and updates for programming in the City of Akron Recreation and Parks department, following consultation with Summit County Public Health officials.

All City of Akron community centers, including Balch St. Fitness Center and Forest Lodge, will be opening up to the public by the end of the month. Opening dates, hours of operation, and programs offered will vary by center. As opening information becomes available for each individual center, updates will be posted on the City website at and on the City of Akron Recreation and Parks Facebook page. Residents can also call their local Community Center directly for specific programming information. The Balch St. Fitness Center opened on September 8 with hours of operation from Mon – Fri 6am – 8pm and Sat 8am – 3pm. To limit occupancy, access to Balch Street is currently for members only, and the indoor basketball courts remain closed.

The City has implemented various safety measures for the community centers to help keep everyone safe and to slow the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. Everyone will be required to wear a face mask while inside the facilities. Group sizes for meetings and programming will be limited to no more than 10 people and social distancing will be required. The full list of safety measures and additional rules will be posted on the City website and on the City’s social media pages.

“We know that our community centers are an important resource for Akron residents of all ages,” said Mayor Horrigan. “Safely offering programming to our residents is vital to the overall health of the Akron community. We are looking forward to opening the doors once again and doing so in way that minimizes the risk of spreading COVID-19.”

Additionally, all outdoor basketball hoops will be restored to City of Akron courts by the end of September. In following recommendations from state and local health officials, the City encourages maintaining a safe social distance while using any equipment. If you are sick, please stay home. Equipment is not regularly disinfected so it is to be used at players’ own discretion and risk.

Furthermore, the Salvation Army is continuing their free Community Food Program at Patterson Park and Summit Lake Community Centers Monday through Friday. The Good Samaritan Hunger Center will also continue their food distribution program, distributing at various community centers including: Joy Park, Ed Davis, Summit Lake, and Patterson Park. For specific times and locations for future distributions please follow the City of Akron Recreation and Parks Facebook page.

Virtual programming options will be ongoing through the rest of the year. Recreation and Parks has offered several Sip-N-Paint nights throughout the summer and will continue these on a monthly basis. There has also been an ongoing campaign to “Find Bigfoot” in various City of Akron parks. Bigfoot is a large wooden cutout moved around by employees who post clues to his whereabouts on the City of Akron Recreation and Parks Facebook page. Follow along for those updates so you can find Bigfoot and take your own #SasquatchSelfie.

Finally, Akron Parks Week will be returning at the beginning of October. There will be tree planting events in two City of Akron parks. More information will be released on Akron Parks Week soon.