Written and Edited By: Lexie Cutmore, Zach Wagner, Matt Lauster, Bridget Robson and Alexis Bott
Canalside Chronicles Staff
Life in a small town moves at a slower pace. Unlike a big city, there isn’t a booming night life or a plethora of activities for families to enjoy and young people often complain that there’s nothing to do.
Hamlin’s recreation director, Anke Applebaum, moved from Austria to this rural town in Upstate, New York when she was a child, so her father could pursue a career journalism.
“If you’re going to be raising kids, you’d want to stop in and talk to the recreation department to see what kind of environment is available for you and your family,” Applebaum said.
Being in a small town limits the recreation department on what they can provide for the town each year. A smaller town will most likely be held to a smaller budget, and the help needed in order to put on events might be hard to come by.
“We’re one of the smaller, if not the smallest recreation department in Monroe County,” Applebaum said.
The small size of the department has definitely helped it communicate effectively and stay in touch with what the town needs especially for its big events. Applebaum shared stories of different events they hold each year, and with each season brings on new tasks. Scream Fest in the fall, Christmas party in the winter, sports sign ups in the summer.
“The recreation department always has summer camps for kids and some great ‘mini’ camps in the works,” said Eric Peters, supervisor for the Town of Hamlin.
During the fall, their advertisements display the Halloween event as more family friendly. This is the result of an efficient Parks and Recreation Department that is in touch with their town. With each season bringing on new taskas, Applebaum shared stories of how they adapt to the ever-changing population in Hamlin to keep the citizens interested in local events. They even send out a seasonal newsletter to make it easier for the residents to find activities in an otherwise uneventful rural town.
As of late, the town started using social media as a way to keep everyone up to date. Social media is a quick and efficient resource for getting the word out. In 2015 the department won the New York State Recreation and Park Society Multimedia Award for having the best Facebook Page.
Although Hamlin’s parks and recreation department does not emulate the popular television show ‘Parks and Rec’ starring Amy Poehler. The people of Hamlin should not forget about their actual Parks and Recreation Department. They are responsible for keeping things lively in this small town.