Bridgeport summer activities in full swing

By Erika Pedroza | Published Wednesday, June 11, 2014

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Youth – and adults – in the city of Bridgeport splashed into summer this week.

With the exception of Kids Camp, which began Monday, all summer activities offered by Bridgeport Parks and Recreation started up Tuesday.

Splish Splash

SPLISH SPLASH – Two-year-old Elsie Watson was among the dozens who reported for the first day of Mama Fishy Swim School lessons at Bridgeport City Pool Tuesday. In addition to swim lessons, junior guard, swim team and water aerobics at the pool all kicked off on Tuesday. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

And although they’ve already started, registration for the activities is still open.

Chris Heasley, recreation superintendent, takes pride in how his department tries to offer something for all ages.

“We really strive to offer something for everyone,” he said. “From swimming lessons and camp for the little ones, to junior guard for middle school age and hiring high school students to help us and offering water aerobics for adults, we feel like we do.”

The summer programs offered by Bridgeport Parks and Recreation include:


The program, open to kids aged 10 to 15, teaches basic life-guarding skills.

“It really focuses on teamwork and communication,” Heasley said. “It’s not quite the life-guarding class, but this gives me the ability to train a potential staff at a younger age. I can get a good feel for if the kids would do well as lifeguards.

The group will compete with other junior guard programs the last Saturday in June in Denton.

Practices are 9 to 10 a.m. Tuesday through Friday at Bridgeport City Pool. Cost is $80.


The Bridgeport Parks and Recreation swim team practices 10 to 11:40 a.m. Tuesday through Friday at the pool.

Participants compete in four circuit meets and at regionals against teams in the “western half of the Metroplex,” including Southlake, Keller and Denton.

“This program is all about getting stronger and faster as a swimmer,” Heasley said.

Cost is $80.


Mama Fishy Swim School offers five levels of swim lessons in three different sessions this summer.

Parent and Guppy, which meets 11 to 11:40 a.m., is recommended for ages 1 to 3. A parent or guardian must be in the water with each child

The next level, Tadpole, meets 10:15 to 10:55 a.m. It is recommended for kids ages 3 to 5, who may be fearful of water.

Lessons include games, songs and water exploration. Parents may be asked to assist.

Minnows meet 9:30 to 10:10 a.m. The class is recommended for ages 3 to 5 who are fearless and have typically had one previous session. Kids should learn how to save their selves.

Level III, Blowfish, is recommended for kids age 4 to 6. Kids can save themselves but have little or no stroke technique. The class introduces side breathing.

The highest level lessons – Dolphin – are for kids age 7 and up who need detail instructions. Students learn to apply correct breathing, learn all five strokes and develop the lap swim.

Upon completion of the course, students become candidates for the aforementioned swim team. The swim school offers three, two-week courses. Each session consists of eight 40-minute classes. They include:

  • Session I – through June 20;
  • Session II – July 8-18;
  • Session III – July 22-Aug. 1.

Cost is $70 for the first registration and $65 for each additional child.


Kids Camp is 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday through Aug. 15 at Bridgeport Elementary.

Campers visit Bridgeport City Pool twice a week, and each Wednesday will take a field trip. Destinations include the Fort Worth Zoo, AT&T Stadium, Keller Pointe Water Park, the Fort Worth Children’s Museum and Go Bonkers.

Weekly cost is $75 per child.

“We have them pay by the week. That way they can pick and choose which weeks they want to come,” Heasley said. “But they can come every week if they so choose.”

Discounts are available for students who qualify for free and reduced lunches.

Camp is open to any Wise County resident.


When there aren’t classes or private parties, the city pool is open to the public. Hours are:

  • noon to 8 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday;
  • noon to 5 p.m. Wednesday and Friday; and
  • 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Admission is $2 for ages 4 and up.

“It’s the best price on entertainment in town,” Heasley said.


Residents of all ages are invited to participate in water aerobics exercises 8 to 8:45 a.m. Tuesday through Friday.

Led by instructor Debra Barnett, the exercises include stretches in the shallow water and non-impact movement in the deep end.

“You wear a thick belt that keeps you afloat so you’re barely tapping the pool bottom,” Barnett said. “This non-impact exercise is good for all physical conditions.”

She added that the water pressure helps with recovery from injuries and surgeries and strengthens bones.

“Aerobics means sending air to your fingers and toes,” she said. “This workout does that. It brings oxygen to all parts of the body and keeps blood pressure down.”

Cost is $3 a person.


Miss Twister Dance Camps will offer two sessions June 24-26.

The first, to be held 9:30 a.m. to noon is a “Frozen”-themed camp for ages 5 and 6.

Dancers will have the opportunity to relive the big-hit movie through dances, ballet techniques, games, crafts and snack time.

Dance Through the Decades is for ages 7 to 10 from 1 to 4 p.m. each of the three days.

Campers will learn dances from the ’50s through today.

Cost is $50 per class, which are held at Bridgeport Community Center.

To register for any of these activities, stop by City Hall or the city pool or call 940-683-3480.

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