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Registration Opens For Rec Programs

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MyVeronaNJ-RecreationThe Verona Recreation Department is opening registration for its Winter programs tonight, which means another opportunity to test the department’s online sign-up system.

The department has been easing its way into the system, known as Community Pass. It will hold in-person registration first this evening from 6 to 8 p.m., because there is limited space in its most popular classes, including T-Ball,Tennis Tots and Creative Movement. “If you really want to get into a class, you have to show up in person,” says Jim Cunningham, Verona’s director of recreation and community services. Beginning tomorrow at noon, you can use the online system for all the classes that didn’t close out Tuesday night.

Many Verona parents are not yet familiar with the Community Pass system, designed by Ridgewood, N.J.-based Capturepoint, which can be found on the town’s home page if you scroll down the screen. Cunningham says that, of Verona’s 5,000 families, 500 are now Community Pass users. Unlike conventional Web shopping cart systems, you must first set up an account for your family that includes the names and birthdates of your children, as well as their current grade level, before registering for any program. Then to use it, you must sign in to your account and select which child you are registering. The system will display only those programs open to children of that age and grade. If you have several children, you must complete registration for one before registering the others. The system also does not include all of the Rec department’s programs, so older residents will still need to show up in person for the Senior Exercise Class; ditto kids’ bowling, a program offered through the Eagle Rock Lanes in West Orange.

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Many of the non-Recreation Department sports teams have incorporated the Internet into their registration processes. The Verona Lacrosse League is fully digital, even down to taking credit cards over the Web in payment. The Verona Baseball Softball League makes it possible to download registration forms, which can then be dropped off at its lock-box in the Community Center. Verona Junior Wrestling put its form online, and the Verona Eagles have a registration account system similar to the Rec system.

Cunningham says the two-track registration process is the only way to transition his department from paper registration to the digital age. “When the community is 90% on board,” he says, “we’ll have more online registration.”

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Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citranohttps://myveronanj.com
Virginia Citrano grew up in Verona. She moved away to write and edit for The Wall Street Journal’s European edition, Institutional Investor, Crain’s New York Business and Forbes.com. Since returning to Verona, she has volunteered for school, civic and religious groups, served nine years on the Verona Environmental Commission and is now part of Sustainable Verona. She co-founded MyVeronaNJ in 2009. You can reach Virginia at [email protected]

2 COMMENTS

  1. With spring registration in two days, I have to ask a question to which I already know the answer. Why would the Rec Dept. start registration at 6pm on a weeknight? I am sure this is to accommodate working parents, but for those of us whose working spouses do not get home until well after 6pm, this is a tricky time. It’s dinner time (or just after) and with younger kids- approaching bed time. So either I pay a babysitter, bring all 3 kids to the VCC, or risk not getting the class I want by registering online after 8pm.
    The YMCA family center in Montclair had this same problem. Their solution- registration starts online at 8am. In-person is also available throughout the day, but it starts on online and is first come first serve. Even if you work, you can still be online by 8am or go online before leaving for work.
    Could Verona Rec consider this model?

  2. We spoke to Rec Director Jim Cunningham. The department is trying to give everyone a shot, both those who prefer online and those who might be uncomfortable registering or paying online by credit card. It seems that things are moving toward more of an emphasis on online registration; in fact, the upcoming registration for summer playgrounds will be completely online.

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