BRISTOL – With Muzzy Field renovations nearing completion, Joshua Medeiros, superintendent of Parks, Recreation, Youth and Community Services is hoping to see the city’s summer schedule of activities resume as close to normal as possible.
“I’m optimistic that we’re turning the corner with vaccine rollouts,” Medeiros said Friday. “The pandemic has been a challenge for everyone, but we’ve tried to stay as optimistic as we can be throughout this process. Everything is a guessing game right now as far as what the world will look like in summer due to covid-19. Normally we’d be planning way far in advance but it’s almost become week to week planning. We are hoping to get our summer activities and our summer camps started on time, in June, when school gets out.”
One thing that has already changed for the better, Medeiros said, is aquatics programs will be resuming Monday.
“The state just recently changed its guidelines so the swim team can resume,” he said. “The state is now permitting low to medium risk activities and swimming was deemed a lower risk. That also means that we can bring back our water fitness classes at the aquatics center.”
Medeiros also said the Bristol Blues baseball team was recently “thrilled” to hear the renovations at Muzzy Field are almost complete.
“It has been a massive project,” he said. “From August through November we replaced the turf and put in a new LED lighting system. The renovation of Muzzy Field was a priority project for the department when we requested funding. Muzzy Field is our premiere sports facility and we wanted to make sure it looked safe. We are currently replacing all of the fencing inside and out. Replacing the scoreboard will be the last cherry on top.”
Medeiros said he is optimistic the Bristol Blues will be able to play their season this year.
While the city has been unable to host its traditional winter sports programs due to the pandemic, Medeiros said funding was re-allocated to provide “All Heart Packs” with books to read and color, crafts kits and sports equipment such as basketballs for residents to enjoy.
“We delivered these packs to people’s houses for free,” Medeiros said. “We had a lot of equipment that the city wasn’t necessarily using. Two hundred packs were reserved in two hours and they are now completely sold out. We have a waiting list of more than 240 people for the second round. We are working to meet that demand and expand what we can offer. Our goal is to deliver 1,000 All Heart Packs in 2021.”
Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or email@example.com.