By Jan Carabeo


PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Throughout the summer, Philadelphia Parks and Recreation is offering plenty of venues around the city, from pools to parks, to get out to play. With crowded city streets and tight living quarters, Philadelphians often don’t have big backyards. Some have no yard at all.

No problem, though, Philly’s Parks and Rec has you covered.

“Who needs a backyard when you have 10,000 acres of land, 159 rec centers, 70 pools,” Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell said. “This is our backyard. Our goal is to really make sure kids and families have safe, free, fun places to enjoy the summer in the city.”

And summer in the city gets hot.

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Thankfully, there are 70 pools across Philly to jump in and chill out.

(Credit: CBS3)

Fun not just for the kids but activities for their parents too.

“Things like aqua Zumba or yoga on the deck or water aerobics,” Ott Lovell said.

When the pools close for the day, you can head to one of Philly’s 130 spraygrounds or splash in the fountain at LOVE Park.

Then just a short walk away, along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, is a popular pop-up park, The OVAL+.

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It’s bigger and better than ever this year, stretching all the way from Eakins Oval to Logan Square.

“We have an athletic area where you can play basketball,” Ott Lovell said, “you can play ping pong on the parkway, play a little volleyball.

With a section of the parkway closed to traffic, the idea is more park, less way.

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That’s the mission with Philadelphia’s Playstreets as well.

The Parks and Rec program closes 500 city streets for hours per day, five days a week during the summer so kids can play without leaving their neighborhoods.

“It’s not just that the kids can go outside of their homes and not worry about cars coming down the street,” Ott Lovell said, “They can enjoy and play, but we’re also providing free meals at all of those Playstreets.”

They’re keeping kids and entire families happy and healthy without even leaving Philadelphia.

“Not everyone has the opportunity to go down t he Shore every weekend or go to Disney World,” Ott Lovell said. “And we want people to know you can have an incredible time free with your family in our Parks and Recreation system all summer long.”