There's Something For
Everyone At The Brookline Recreation Center
in the Brookline Recreation Center is required and it is FREE.
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Memberships are good at all Citiparks Recreation Centers.
Last Modified: April 19, 2015
Recreation Center History>
The Brookline Memorial Recreation
Center, built in 1970, is located in Brookline Memorial Park, along the
lower part of Brookline Boulevard in what was once referred to as East
Brookline. The Recreation Center facility, and the park itself, commonly
known as the Community Center, have been an integral part in the lives
of many Brookline families for over sixty years.
The current recreation building
replaced an old farmhouse that had been in use since 1947. Prior to that,
public recreation facilities in Brookline were provided exclusively
at Moore Park,
another first-class complex located on Pioneer Avenue. Brookliner's are
fortunate to have two city parks located within the neighborhood.
Brookline Memorial Park offers a
variety of recreational facilities. The park contains a large multi-purpose
ballfield, two lighted baseball fields, a T-Ball field, an outdoor batting
cage, picnic pavilion, children's playground, outdoor basketball court and
a DEK Hockey rink, along with plenty of open green space.
The Recreation Center
itself houses an indoor basketball court, recreation room, weight-lifting and
fitness center, and limited meeting space. There is something for all
seasons, and ample parking is available.
The Brookline Community Center was
originally owned and operated by volunteer members of the Brookline Community
Center Association. In 1966 the park was turned over to the city and long-time
Moore Park Center Director Chuck Senft was assigned to manage the facility. Chuck's
office moved from Moore Park to Brookline Park in 1971 upon completion of
the new Recreation Center building.
The park has been the
scene of many changes over the next three decades, but until the dawn of the new millennium, the
one thing that remained a constant was Chuck Senft. His tenure as Recreation
Director in Brookline spanned from 1958 until his retirement in 2003.
Through Chuck's tireless efforts and
dedication, the children of Brookline benefited from the many recreation
programs under his supervision, most notably the Moore Park and Brookline
Boxing Club, "Charlie's Angels". Formed in 1958, the Brookline boxers built
a reputation as one of the premier boxing clubs in Western Pennsylvania
with over fifty team championships.
There was also the Track Club, the
Basketball Leagues and countless other recreational activities to keep the
community's children off the streets. While under Chuck's supervision everyone
knew that their kids were safe, and what more could a parent ask for?
In August of 2003, the city closed the
Recreation Center due to financial difficulties. Thanks to the Act 47 recovery
plan, the building reopened in February of 2005 under the direction of a
familiar face, Michelle "Mickey" Underwood.
As a Recreation Leader in Brookline
for over twenty years, Mickey was busy behind the scenes with several programs
of her own, like children's crafts and ceramics.
In 2000, Mickey moved on to become the
Director at the Phillips Park Recreation Center in Carrick. From her return to
Brookline in 2005 until a promotion to Area Supervisor in the Fall of 2014,
her skills and leadership ensured that the Brookline Recreation Center continued
to provide our neighborhood's children the same sort of safe, friendly atmosphere
in which to grow and prosper.
The boxing program also continues to
grow and develop. Now called the Pittsburgh Boxing Club, supervised by Ted Mrkonja and retired Marine
Bob Brown. Also leading the drills is one of Brookline's former elite
boxers, Pittsburgh policeman Carlos Schrader.
Under their skillful guidance, the tradition
of Brookline boxing excellence continues to flourish. Beginning in 2009, the
club has been holding workouts in renovated facilities in both Mount
Washington and Overbrook, as well as at the Recreation Center.
Today, the Recreation Center is once
again one of the main centers of activity in Brookline. Refurbished in the
winter of 2001 and again in 2010, the building now sports a hardwood gym floor
and a state-of-the-art Weight Lifting and Fitness Center, complete with a
wide range of equipment. A new HVAC system now provides temperature
control. On November 1, 2014, Brookline welcomed a new Director, Jon Coyne,
to the Recreation Center family.
Current programs include yoga,
weightlifting, martial arts classes, youth basketball and soccer clinics,
an instructional indoor soccer program, summer basketball leagues, kindersports,
walk-fit classes and other seasonal activities.
The meeting room is available
for local scouts and community groups. With an experienced staff of Recreation
Teachers leading the way, the Brookline Memorial Recreation Center remains one
of the finest neighborhood recreational facilities in the City of
links to some of the countless fond remembrances
that so many Brookliners have of their Community Center.