Press Releases: Colorado
April 27, 2010
City of Denver and Kaiser Permanente Join Forces to Waive Fees at Recreation Centers and Swimming Pools
DENVER — Mayor John Hickenlooper and Kaiser Permanente Colorado President Donna Lynne announced today that through a generous $150,000 grant from Kaiser Permanente, Denver youth will once again have free access to city recreation centers and swimming this summer.
Open to Denver youth ages 17 and younger, recreation centers and pools will be free from June 4 through Aug. 14. This is the second year that Kaiser Permanente has supported the free summer recreation program. Standard fees will continue to apply for programs and activities that typically are offered at an additional charge.
“We have seen the positive impact of giving our kids a place to go for the summer,” Mayor Hickenlooper said. “We are fortunate to have a great community partner like Kaiser Permanente to make having a fun a priority for Denver youth.”
“In this tough economy, parents can’t always afford to send their kids to the pool. By supporting the free admission program, we’re giving all Denver children the opportunity to be active and enjoy the outdoors,” said Donna Lynne, DrPH, president, Kaiser Permanente Colorado. “This program demonstrates Kaiser Permanente’s commitment to making the healthy choice, the easy choice for our children and we’re proud to support it.”
Over the past two years, more than 162,000 kids have taken advantage of the free summer pools and recreation. Some centers experienced a 200 percent increase in users.
“As always, we have some great programs and events planned for this summer,” said Kevin Patterson, manager of Denver Parks and Recreation. “Serving Denver residents, and especially Denver youth, is what we do and who we are. We are grateful to Kaiser Permanente for allowing us to do more of it.”
Area recreation centers offer a variety of summer activities, including open swim, basketball, game room and a Food Bank of the Rockies program that offers free food for families. Programs available for a nominal fee include Hoopin’ with Hickenlooper, baseball, t-ball, volleyball and swim lessons.
Free summer recreation complements the My Place program launched in 2008. This program gives Denver Public Schools students attending elementary and middle school, where 75 percent or more students receive free and/or reduced lunch, the opportunity for a free one-year membership to their neighborhood recreation center. In 2008 and 2009, more than 13,000 kids took advantage of that program.
Denver residents may locate their nearest recreation center by visiting www.denvergov.org/parksandrecreation and clicking on "Find a Recreation Center."
About Denver Parks and Recreation
Denver Parks and Recreation facilities are unrivaled in the Rocky Mountain West. The DPR system spans over a 138-year history from the first park created in 1868 to nearly 15,000 acres of urban parks and mountain parkland today. It embraces nearly 3,000 acres of “traditional” parks and parkways, 2,500 urban natural acres and close to 8,000 acres of urban forest within the city alone. The system has evolved from the early years of jungle gyms and swings to 29 recreation centers and 17 outdoor pools offering high-quality programs.
About Kaiser Permanente Colorado
The Colorado Permanente Medical Group has an exclusive contract with Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Colorado to form Kaiser Permanente Colorado, the state's largest private, non-profit health care provider in the state. CPMG is Colorado's largest medical group practice within a health care organization, and employs 800 regular status physicians representing all medical specialties and major sub-specialties. More than 483,000 members in the Denver/Boulder and Colorado Springs areas have access to Kaiser Permanente care through an expanded suite of health care products. Kaiser Permanente physicians and care teams focus on prevention as well as managing disease, all in an effort to help patients live well and thrive. Visit us online at kp.org or get the latest in health news at our News Center.