Past, Present, and Future – by Jacquelyn Tyre-Perry

A child in extended care attempts to break open a piñata they made in front of the old recreation center
A child in extended care attempts to break open a piñata they made in front of the old recreation center

A couple weeks ago marked my 10 years of working with Parks and Recreation. It’s been filled with trying times, rewarding experiences, and lifelong friends.

Before the Community Center was built into the facility you see today, some of you may remember a single building with a pool years ago. When I started, that building was known as the “little shack.” We had two classrooms, a few offices, a large community type room, and a gym. To think that we ran preschool, before and after school care, and summer camps out of that building is sometimes still comical. It’s still emotional thinking about the day the shack was torn down. There were many memories in that building.

Fast forward to running Extended Care out of Manassas Park schools with Ms. Shuemaker, to now being housed in what we know as the Manassas Park Community Center. “Moving up” would be a major understatement! All the classes and programs we have grown and started are nothing short of amazing.

Catherine Morretta (left) was the Director for the City of Manassas Park, Department of Parks and Recreation until her passing in 2015. She started working for the City in 1995.

I have had the pleasure of encountering amazing staff, students, and patrons in my 10 years here. We’ve had women like Ms. Shuemaker and Ms. Morretta leave behind amazing legacies and lasting impressions that we will cherish forever. I have students that are going into their adult years now whose stories will forever circulate this building. It has been and will continue to be an honor to serve for this Department and our community for many years to come.

Jacquelyn Tyre-Perry is the School Age Recreation Specialist for the City of Manassas Park, Department of Parks and Recreation. She can be reached at 703-335-8872 or via email at J.Tyre-Perry@ManassasParkVA.gov

Leave a comment