Park Bench Newsletter - November 2018

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Holiday Hours

Veterans Day
Monday, Nov. 12
Buildings and pools will be open regular hours. Administrative offices will be closed. 

Thursday, Nov. 22
All facilities closed

Friday after Thanksgiving
Friday, Nov. 23
Buildings and pools open
11 a.m.-8 p.m.
Administrative offices closed. 


Upcoming Events

Dance Workshops

Belly Dancing Workshop
Nov. 8
Robert A. Lee Recreation Center

African Dance Workshop
Nov. 16
Robert A. Lee Recreation Center


Water Safety Instructor Course
Friday, Nov. 9-Sunday, Nov. 11
5-8 p.m. Friday
All day Saturday and Sunday
Mercer Park Aquatic Center

POUND Toys for Tots Holiday Drive & Veterans Day Celebration
Sunday, Nov. 11
3-4:30 p.m.
Mercer Park Aquatic Center


No School Day Activities

Friday, Nov. 16

Sylvan STEAM Engine
Intro to Clay Arts (Grades K-4)
Clay Arts (Grades 4-8) 

Wednesday, Nov. 21
Sylvan STEAM Engine


FREE Water Aerobics
Sunday, Nov. 18
11:15 a.m. - noon
Mercer Park Aquatic Center

Family Swim 
Every Friday and Sunday
5 to 8 p.m.
Robert A. Lee Recreation Center
$1 per person


Park Highlight

Cardigan Park

Located off Huntington Dr. in the Windsor Ridge neighborhood, Cardigan Park is the perfect neighborhood park.

This three-acre park received all new amenities this past year during renovations, which include a new playground and Iowa City’s first community fire pit! Cardigan Park also features a shelter and open green space.

Did you know Iowa City Parks and Recreation oversees 50 parks? Each month we’ll spotlight a different park in our newsletter.


The holidays are coming!

Holiday Market

Are you looking for that unique, one-of-a-kind holiday gift? Look no further than the Iowa City Holiday Market.

Shop homegrown, homemade, and handcrafted gifts and foods at the Robert A. Lee Recreation Center, 220 S. Gilbert St. Mark your calendars now!

Save the date:

  • Saturday, Nov. 17, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. 
  • Saturday, Dec. 8, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. 

For more information, visit or RSVP to the Holiday Market events on Facebook

New faces at ICPR

Iowa City Parks and Recreation is excited to welcome two new staff members: Recreation Superintendent Brad Barker, and Communications and Special Events Recreation Supervisor Lyndsey Kent. 

Brad Barker

Brad began as the new Recreation Superintendent on Oct. 30, bringing nearly 16 years of management experience in the field of recreation service.

Before arriving in Iowa City, Brad spent four years as the Director of Parks and Recreation in Vinton, Iowa and served as the department’s Assistant Director for the prior seven years. In addition to recreation, special events and aquatics programming, he brings extensive experience in staff leadership, facility operations, financial management and community engagement.

Brad earned a Bachelor’s degree in Sport Management from Iowa State University and a Master’s degree in Park & Recreation Management from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana. Please send Brad a warm Iowa City welcome. 

Lyndsey Kent

Lyndsey joined the ICPR staff at the beginning of September. Previously, she worked for the Iowa City/Coralville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau as the Director of Sales.

During her time at the CVB, Lyndsey worked with area hotels to bring conferences and meetings to the Iowa City Area. She also worked on a number of large community events including the Telenet UCI Cyclocross World Cup/Jingle Cross, FRYfest, RUN CRANDIC, and many others.

Lyndsey is a University of Iowa graduate originally from northwest Iowa. In her spare time, she enjoys running, hiking, biking, and listening to podcasts. 

If you have ideas, share Park Bench newsletter topics with Lyndsey.  

Free Home Energy Audits

Want to make sure your house is sustainable? Want to save money on your utility bills? Green Iowa Americorps can help! Green Iowa Americorps (GIA) is a community service program dedicated to helping homeowners in Iowa City increase their energy efficiency through free home energy audits. Interested? Call the GIA team today at 319-339-5399. 

Free Home Energy Audit