We may be in our second spring of the pandemic but there are still plenty of virtual and socially distanced activities happening in the Tri-Cities this and next week to celebrate BC Youth Week.
Held from May 1 to 7, Youth Week aims to build connections between youth — ages 13 to 18 — and their communities.
Started in 1995, Youth Week was the brainchild of a group of local municipal planners and youth recreation leaders in the Lower Mainland.
Today, Youth Week has expanded to include sporting competitions, entertainment events, service projects, advocacy campaigns, youth award ceremonies, educational forums and other events to showcase, educate and empower youth.
In Coquitlam, the Park Spark team will roll out pop-up activities at local parks to coincide with Youth Week; to register, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
• May 1: Mundy Park
• May 4: Glen Park
• May 5: Burke Mountain Pioneer Park
• May 7: Blue Mountain Park
• May 8: Mackin Park
Meanwhile, youth can also sign up for fun at the Pinetree and Poirier community centres, the Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex and City Centre Aquatic Complex.
And there are some events also geared specifically for pre-teens (ages 11 to 14).
Starting Saturday, youth can join a basketball contest, hip hop workshop, youth-only skating and swimming and a late-night takeover at PSLC.
Also on May 1, a week-long scavenger hunt for ages 11 to 18 kicks off. Once registered, clues will be emailed each day for items at different Coquitlam locations.
To see the full list of what’s available online and in-person — with physical-distancing restrictions — go to coquitlam.ca/youthweek.
As well, Coquitlam’s two youth centres will be open: the Gateway Youth Centre is now located in the Poirier administrative building (644 Poirier St.) — to make way for the COVID-19 mass vaccination clinic nearby at the Poirier Forum and Centennial Pavilion — while The Landing (1260 Pinetree Way) in the Pinetree community centre is also available.
The Gateway is open weekdays from 3:15 to 8 p.m. (ages 14 to 18), and Saturdays from 10:15 a.m. to 2 p.m. (ages 11 to 14).
The Landing runs Tuesday to Thursday from 3 to 7:30 p.m. on weekdays, and 3:30 to 9:15 p.m. on the weekends.
The Landing is for youth ages 13 to 18; however, kids ages 11 to 13 can drop by on Fridays from 5:30 to 7 p.m., and Saturdays from 3:30 to 5 p.m., by pre-registering through coquitlam.ca/registration.
Meanwhile, in PoCo, the city’s Youth Crew is also presenting cool events geared for youth ages 11 to 18:
• May 1: games night via Zoom, 7 to 8 p.m.
• May 2: free swim at Hyde Creek (lap pool), 2 p.m.
• May 4: Great PoCo Bake Off via Zoom, 3:30 to 5 p.m.
• May 5: Among Us via Zoom, 4:30 to 5:30 p.m.
• May 6: art show opening reception, 4 to 5 p.m. (email email@example.com)
• May 6: paint night, 7 to 8 p.m.
• May 7: murder mystery via Zoom, 8 to 9:30 p.m.
To register, go to pocoyouth.com/events.
As well, check out the online message on the website from Tyler Shaw, the singer and actor who grew up in Port Coquitlam and graduated from Riverside secondary.
In his video, Shaw encourages youth to “mix and mingle with the community, safely” especially during the dedicated week.