The city announced the usual closures for the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.
Nobody expects city offices to be open on Christmas or New Year’s Day, but the closures do raise some questions about priorities.
Greensboro has an award winning Parks and Recreation Department with wonderful parks and recreation centers, parks and facilities throughout the city. But if these facilities are for the benefit of the residents of Greensboro why are they closed on days when schools are closed and many people are off work.
Particularly for children, it seems that the recreation centers should be open as much as possible when school is out giving kids someplace to go for safe supervised recreation. But the recreation centers are closed Saturday, Dec. 23 through Wednesday, Dec. 27. So not just Christmas Eve and Christmas Day but the Saturday before Christmas Eve to two days after Christmas.
The whole schedule for recreation centers seems to be designed to be open when children and working adults can’t be there and be closed during times that they can. The recreation centers are open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday. Wouldn’t it make more sense for the recreation centers to be open later on Saturday and open on Sunday when kids are out of school. Other city facilities are open on Sunday, why can’t recreation centers be open.
If the idea is to serve the public it would make more sense for recreation centers to shift their hours so that they are closed in the mornings when children are in school and people are at work and be open later in the evenings when children aren’t in school and most people aren’t at work as well as having longer hours on Saturday and be open on Sunday.
When top Greensboro officials and members of the City Council have been asked about this, the answer is “That’s the way we’ve always done it.”
The Greensboro Public Library system and the Greensboro History Museum fall into the same category. The libraries and the museum are closed Saturday, Dec. 23 through Wednesday, Dec. 27. Wouldn’t it make sense for the libraries and the museum to be open as much as possible when children are out of school and many people are off work. Lots of families are looking for good family activities during the holidays. Certainly a trip to the Greensboro History Museum should be on that list, but it can’t be because the museum is closed.
At least the libraries unlike the recreation centers are open on Sundays from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. but like recreation centers libraries close early on Saturday at 6 p.m. Monday through Friday libraries are open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
The Greensboro History Museum hours make a little more sense because the museum is closed Mondays instead of Sundays like the recreation centers. But the hours Tuesday through Saturday are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
It certainly appears that these facilities have hours that are more designed for the convenience of the city employees than for the convenience of people who might want to use them.