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By Michael Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor
The summer is winding down and the kids are heading back to school. For many, the first day of school next week will be the beginning of just another year with the same friends and the same sports and activities at the same school. For others, 2016 will be the beginning of a new adventure.
Enter Peter Sylvester and the town of Dover’s Sports, Crafts & More program. Throughout the majority of the summer, Sylvester, who has worked for Dover’s public school and recreational departments for 12 years, has run the Sports, Crafts & More program at the Caryl Community Center to help give kids in grades K-3 a place to go and play the games they love, all while allowing them each to establish connections and friendships for the upcoming school year.
“This is the first year we’ve done this program and it has been a major success,” said Sylvester.
So what exactly goes on at the Sports, Crafts & More program?
“We do a lot of things both inside and outside that the kids love,” said Sylvester. “On Tuesdays and Thursdays, we have a DJ come in and do music lessons with the kids. We play a lot of kickball too, which is probably the one thing that every child here loves to do the most. We try to keep the kids as busy as possible, because that allows them to be more interactive with one another.”
The children are also given free reign over a bumper pool table, ping pong table, foosball table, and a seemingly endless amount of board games and bingo cards.
Sylvester said that the program is important because it allows children who are new to the area a head start on making new friends for the upcoming school year.
“We had one child move here from England and another from Newton,” said Sylvester. “Both participated in the program and they really seemed to enjoy their time here this summer. Moving is always tough for kids, but our program is designed to help children like this get adjusted to life in a new town and help them get to know people they are about to go to school with.”