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Park City organization helping kids stay active outdoors during pandemic

Posted at 11:42 AM, Feb 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-16 13:42:27-05

PARK CITY, Utah — For much of the last year, many Utah sporting events or programs have been canceled, but a Park City organization is making sure to keep kids active during the pandemic.

Youth Sports Alliance Park City representatives say, despite the changes the COVID-19 pandemic has brought, they’re thriving in their after-school programs.

“It’s actually putting smiles on their faces as opposed to being told that they can’t do things. It’s just what makes us do what we do,” said Emily Fisher, Executive Director, Youth Sports Alliance.

The organization offers a variety of activities for children to exercise outdoors, including ice skating, snowboarding, mountain biking, alpine skiing and cross country skiing.

“We feel it’s also really important for kids to just have fun and be kids and be outside and learn that, if you fall down you get back up, and you keep trying and being outside in nature I think now, more than ever, is very important,” Fisher said.

Trying to implement COVID-19 precautions has been difficult but Fisher said they knew they had to make changes for the sake of the kids.

“We’ve seen with our own children and all of our children’s friends and local youth that they had been spending way too much time inside on their screens and not being active, so we decided to get creative and figure out how we could run our after-school programs,” Fisher said.

They’ve reduced the number of kids in each class but increased the number of classes they offer to accommodate all students.

Right now, they have 1,200 kids from Summit and Wasatch counties in various programs. Nearly a quarter of those kids come from low-income homes.

“We were coming home on the bus from one of those programs and a kid told me that this was the best day of his life because he got to get out and do something new that he had never done before,” Fisher said.

Visit the Youth Sports Alliance Park City website for further details on outdoor recreation opportunities for kids.