The answer: “a lot!” according to Mindy Matusiak, Recreation Manager for the Frank E. Mackle Community Park. Many already know that Mackle Park features a Kids’ Cove playground, a Teen Center, a game room, outdoor basketball courts, a soccer field, a walking trail around Mackle Pond, shuffleboard and bocce courts and the Canine Cove dog park. What many don’t know, however, is that Mackle Park offers myriad programs for both adults and children. The next month alone is packed with new events for all ages.
Mackle Park is partnering with the Marco Island Fire and Rescue Department, Physicians Regional Medical Center and the Collier County Emergency Medical Services Department to offer a one-day-only CPR Training Course on Saturday, March 17th. The course takes place at the park from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM and it is FREE. All are welcome to attend the event which will provide basic understanding of CPR and demonstrations on how to use an AED, or Automatic External Defibrillator. These machines have proven instrumental in saving lives during cardiac arrest. While formal certification for CPR is not provided, the informational session will help those who are unfamiliar with these fundamental life-saving skills.
Don’t forget to sign up for the Seminole Casino Bus Trip on March 20th. This fun day of gambling is for those 21 and older. Pay $30 and receive $30 in free game play and a $5 food voucher. The coach bus will leave Mackle Park at 9:30 AM and return at 4:30 PM. Enjoy a fun day at the Seminole Casino, “Where Paradise Plays.” Call ahead to sign up, at 642-0575.
Mindy Matusiak is excited to announce some new cooking classes to take place at the park. “Oil and Vinegar and Sharpening Your Knife Skills are presented by Lynn Novo, one of our Farmers’ Market vendors. She is also a private chef. She’s had some awesome classes so far and the new ones shouldn’t be missed.” Novo is featuring “Sharpening Your Knife Skills” on March 12th, from 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM. Even experienced cooks can benefit fromlearning proper knife cutting techniques. Each student will pare, slice, dice, julienne and mince an assortment of fruits and vegetables. Take home your chopped vegetables to prepare a dish at home. The class costs $35 per person.
Novo will also be teaching “Oil and Vinegar,” a course designed to teach the difference between different types of oils and vinegars. Taste and compare oils from California, Spain, Italy and Greece. This class costs $25. Participants for both cooking classes must be at least 18 years old and must pre-register at 642-0575.
This month’s Movie in the Park will feature “Fly Me to the Moon,” an animated movie about three houseflies who sneak aboard Apollo 11 and go for a ride to the moon. The movie will be held on Friday, March 30th at sunset (7:43 PM). “It’s a free movie on the soccer field displayed on an inflatable screen. Everyone can come out and bring their blankets and lawn chairs and we sell popcorn, hot dogs and soda. It’s just a fun, nice evening out with the family,” explains Matusiak.
Next up: the Annual Spring Jubilee. This free event takes place on Saturday, April 7th, from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM. “We basically have 12,000 easter eggs we put out on the soccer field. The egg hunt is categorized by age levels. We are looking for volunteers to help us with scattering eggs or to help us with any of our game or craft booths,” adds Mindy. The egg hunt starts at 11:30 but there will be so much more. A guest appearance by the Easter Bunny will coincide with live music, pony rides, caricatures, a bounce house, super science and amazing art, easter crafts and games, balloon animals, magic and more!
Mackle Park has many other programs that run throughout the year. From youth programs to adults, there is something for everyone. Pick up the City of Marco Island Parks and Recreation Department’s Winter Program Guide to learn more about all Mackle Park has to offer. Mackle Park is located at 1361 Andalusia Terrace and may be reached at 239-642-0575.