Fun run, roller skate, circus tricks and more planned for first ‘Community Day’ event on May 14 in Riverhead

Grab some roller skates and head to Stotzky Park in Riverhead on May 14.

The Riverhead Recreation Department will host “Community Day 2022,” a new one-day event that combines a variety of family activities as a kickoff to the summer season. Members of the Strong Island Derby Revolution, a women’s flat track roller derby league, will stage a demonstration, giving viewers a taste of this unique sport. The skaters will remain on the park’s rink since the participants can then join them to learn some skating tricks or simply to have fun.

“People are encouraged to bring their own skates and they can skate with them and practice some things,” said Ashley Schandel, assistant recreation program coordinator.

Ms. Schandel said that when members of the recreation department started planning different events for the upcoming season, they decided to pull several activities together to form one big event. She said the goal was to make it an annual event.

Entrance to the park for the day is free, although some activities have a charge, which is higher for non-residents. Some of these activities require prior registration.

The day starts with a fun run around the park. Riders are encouraged to wear blue and white accessories and other Riverhead-centric gear. The first 50 registrants receive a T-shirt. And hero sandwiches will be served to attendees afterwards courtesy of Lighthouse Market & Deli and Meetinghouse Deli. Fees for the fun ride are $15 and $20 for non-residents. Registration on the day of the event is cash only and begins at 10:30 a.m.

Another activity will be circus workshops where people can learn juggling, plate spinning and other crafty skills. The one-hour workshop will run from 11 a.m. to noon and again from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Fees are $10 and $15 for non-residents. The workshop is for anyone aged 5 or over. Children between the ages of 5 and 6 must have a parent register and participate as well.

Video game enthusiasts can try out a variety of games in the Game On Long Island truck – a 32-foot game room that can accommodate 28 players at a time. The fee is $10. The truck will park in the parking lot.

An interactive component called Discovery Agents gives people the ability to use their phone’s GPS to identify certain missions in the park. The concept is similar to the popular Pokémon GO mobile game.

“It will continue throughout the park and we will also be featuring it at many of our special events this year,” Ms. Schandel said.

There will be food options, ice cream and other open activities like cornhole and tie dye.

Residents of Riverhead will also have the option of purchasing beach stickers for the summer or signing up for future programs offered by the recreation department.

“It will be our first year to put everything in place, but we are looking to continue and develop it for years after that, so it will be a good thing to kick off the summer,” Ms Schandel said.

She encouraged those interested in the event to sign up to receive text updates for any special events by texting “SPECIALEVENTS” to 631-364-0517. The event is rain or shine, but in case of bad weather it could be canceled in advance. More information can also be found on the Recreation Department’s website and Facebook page.

Ms Schandel said it was a team effort within the recreation department to pull together the different elements of the event.

While the pandemic has altered many programs over the past two summers, Schandel said the recreation department is mostly back to normal for 2022.

“We’ve seen some hesitation with some people who are slowly signing up to register,” she said. “People might still be a little hesitant, so we’re trying to make people feel as safe and comfortable as possible.”

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