Home Voorhees News Mayor’s column: Spring offers many outdoor opportunities

Mayor’s column: Spring offers many outdoor opportunities

Mayor’s column: Spring offers many outdoor opportunities

The arrival of spring offers a wonderful opportunity to enjoy the fresh air and the Voorhees park system.

Connolly Park along Centennial Boulevard is a 49-acre oasis. Acquired by the township in 2001, it contains two dog runs, one for large and one for small dogs, a half-mile walking and jogging track with lights, a playground with swings, a large grass field for multi-sport usage, a cricket pitch, an open-air picnic pavilion and a comfort station with restrooms. A community playground was installed in 2010 and new picnic tables have been added to the park. Connolly Park is also the home of our Summer Concert Series and our Halloween in the Park.

Lions Lake Park is located on Dutchtown Road off of Route 73. Our community banquet facility can accommodate up to 100 people. Lions Lake contains a children’s playground, a picnic grove and a fishing lake. It is also home to the Voorhees Girls Softball Association with four fields, three of which are fully lit. In 2011, the National Softball Association named Lions Lake as one of three “Outstanding Parks” in the northeast and the only facility in New Jersey to receive the award.

Kirkwood Park, located along Laurel Oak Road behind the Hampton Inn, has a lighted softball field, paved walking path, basketball courts, tennis courts, a children’s playground, a multi-purpose field, and two bocce ball courts. The park lighting was recently upgraded through a state grant. The Township also purchased the nearby 14-acre Kirkwood Forest, enhancing and preserving the beauty of this natural setting.

The Maiaroto Sports Complex located on Echelon Road is home to the Voorhees Soccer Association and host to the annual Memorial Day Soccer Tournament, one of the largest in the country. Maiaroto includes all natural turf fields with recently improved lights. It also offers tennis courts, basketball courts and a fully operational snack bar with public restrooms.

Home to the Gibbsboro Voorhees Athletic Association (GVAA) is the Rabinowitz Baseball Complex located along Kresson Road, with six fenced baseball fields. “Sprinturf Diamonds” have been installed on the Babe Ruth and Majors fields. Three of the fields are fully lit. The complex also includes a small playground as well as a snack bar and public restrooms, all of which were recently upgraded.

The GVAA Vikings Youth Football and Cheerleading as well as Voorhees Lacrosse Inc. use Giangiulio Recreation Complex along Victor Blvd. There is a lighted athletic field with synthetic turf. The field can be used year round by our youth football, cheerleading, lacrosse and soccer organizations. In addition, there is a baseball diamond with lights and a tot lot. Giangiulio also includes a snack bar and public restrooms.

Stafford Woods is our largest piece of preserved land. The 140-acre parcel includes a one-mile walking path that follows an old stagecoach trail through undisturbed woods. The Township also purchased the 5.5 acre piece of the land adjacent to Stafford Farm to be preserved as open space. A recently constructed 9 hole Disc Golf Course was constructed and is accessible from Evesham Road.

John Hale, Sr. Memorial Park is at the site of the former Voorhees Township Department of Public Works sewer plant on West End Avenue in the Ashland section. In partnership with the Ashland Residential Coalition (ARC) and with a grant from the Camden County Open Space Advisory Board, a playground and picnic pavilion were installed by the Township and an oasis was born.

The former Buzby Landfill on Centennial Blvd is now the 36-acre Voorhees Environmental Park. The Township partnered with Rutgers University Department of Landscape Architecture and the Voorhees Environmental and Cultural Education Foundation to develop a plan for the future use of the park. The plan can be viewed on the Township web page, www.voorheesnj.com.

The Township maintains neighborhood playgrounds on Round Hill Road in the Green Ridge neighborhood, Elliot Playground on Elliot Drive in the Beagle Club, Sandpiper Playground in the Avian Section, Cornell Drive Playground in Lake Villa as well as the Sheppard Road basketball courts off of Centennial Blvd. New playground equipment was installed in the Green Ridge and Sandpiper Playgrounds in 2012.

The Township Committee will continue to work to improve our park system. All of our parks are maintained without the use of pesticides.

Enjoy the outdoors!

** The fifth annual Community “Walk 4 Family & Friends with Cancer” will be held on Saturday, April 20, at 8 a.m. at Connolly Park on Centennial Boulevard. Proceeds will benefit the Financial Assistance for Cancer Patients Program and Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania. Entry fee is $30 per person, $15 per child age 6 to 18 by April 18 or $30 the day of the event. For more information visit www.walk4family-friendswithcancer.org.

** The 9th annual Wine Tasting to benefit the Alicia Rose Victorious Foundation will be held on Thursday, April 25, from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Virtua Barry Brown Education Building, 106 Carnie Boulevard in Voorhees. The event features over 250 of the most interesting fine wines and craft beers from around the world, accompanied by gourmet delicacies. Wine experts and winemakers are available to answer questions. Ticket donations are $50 per person in advance or $60 per person at the door. For reservations, call 784–0615 or visit www.arvfevents.org. The foundation installs Teen Centers in hospitals throughout the country to bring hope, excitement and entertainment to teens facing difficult conditions while receiving hospital treatment.

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