Low-to-no-cost activities listed on city site

The Berlin Middle School Destination Imagination team, "The Six Sevens," compiled a list of no-to-low cost activities available locally for youths. A brochure is available on the city of Berlin web site. The students created these memes to encourage healthy activities and to lure kids away from drugs and alcohol. Jody Houle. (click for larger version)
July 18, 2016
BERLIN There are a number of school and recreation and parks activities available to kids all year long for a fee. There are also several low-cost and free activities for low-income families. A brochure provided by a group of seventh graders is available on the city of Berlin web site.

The "Six Sevens" are a Destination Imagination team from Berlin Middle School who competed for a service learning project last year and made it to the state finals. Beyond that, the six seventh graders were recognized by Senators Kelly Ayotte and Jeanne Shaheen and Governor Maggie Hassan for their contributions to the community. The team presented a slide-show during the "Stand Up Androscoggin Valley Coalition: Embrace our Region" forum earlier this year. In their presentation, the team of students displayed a number of memes aimed at youth to deter them from drugs and alcohol. Such memes included headlines such as "Wanna get high?" which encourages hiking and "Wanna shoot something?" encouraging basketball. Another aspect of their project was to come up with a list of low-to-no-cost activities that are available in the community."

"A lot of these things are right down here like Mt. Jasper," said DI member Elijah Gilcris at the forum during the team's presentation.

Other students on the team are Connor Welch, Elijah Pinette, Emmelia Letendre, Braylynn Alvarado and Kya-Myth Doucette.

The students compiled the list of activities available within city limits in the form of a brochure that has been handed out throughout the community and posted on the city of Berlin site at http://www.berlinnh.gov.

There is also a locator map of 200 geocached sites within a seven-mile region, said team manager Amy Welch.

With a rising drug crisis among youth in the area, the group came up with the idea themselves to help combat the problem. The overall message is to counter the misconception that there are limited things for kids and families to do -- the "Six-Sevens" have proven that the notion is a false assumption.

"The team did an amazing job on their presentation," said Welch. "They have been able to get the word out about the positive things available to do in Berlin, and with their continued dedication, they will educate a lot of people. I am incredibly proud of them and their hard work. Our community needed some positive things to come out of the drug problem, and they have helped to start that."

Some of the low-cost activities listed include WREN activities for all ages, after-school programs, school dances, school sports, recreation department sports, T-ball, soccer, basketball, skiing, bowling at the Berlin Bowling Center, St. Kieran's center for Performing Arts and Friday night skating at the Notre Dame Arena.

The brochure mentions events such as the ATV Festival, Lumberjack and Gladiator football games, River Driver hockey games, Stump the Hummer, Lumberjack Festival and RiverFire. Many of the events are free to attend.

The group lists plenty of sports and recreational activities that are free.

In the summer, baseball fields are located at Community Field, Memorial Field, Green Street Park and Horne Field located across the river from Brown School. Basketball courts are at Marston School, Brown School, Community Field and at the Berlin Recreational Center.

Playgrounds and parks listed are Susan Street off the top of Hillside Avenue, Brown School, Berlin Middle School/Marston School courtyard, Hutchins Street Park, Community Field, Horne Field, memorial Field Annex, Jericho Mountain State Park and the new Friendship Park on Granite Street.

Tennis courts are at Horne Field and Pleasant Street.

Fishing can be done locally along the Androscoggin River, Jericho Lake and at Little People's Pond, among other water holes.

There are walking/hiking trails at Mt. Jasper, Mt. Forrest, Eversource (Tundreau) Park, Cascade Falls, Burgess Reservoir, Success Falls, Cate's Hill, Jericho Lake, BHS track, and Cleveland Bridge walking loop. There are also bike riding trails throughout the city.

In the winter, besides the arena, ice skating rinks for hockey and skating are located at Hutchins Park, Green Street Park by the police station, Memorial Field Annex and Horne Field.

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