The Brooks Landing Family and Student Ice Skating Party was held at Genesee Valley Park Ice Rink this past Sunday, Feb. 16.
The event, which was co-sponsored by the 19th Ward Community Association and UR, was attended by nearly 250 people from both the UR and local community.
The program included food provided by Menezes Pizza and DeliSandros, as well as door prizes donated by local businesses from the Genesee Corridor Business Association. Dana Miller, Rochester City Council Vice-President, emceed the event.
NeighborWorks Rochester, a non-profit organization that assists families in purchasing homes and is committed to creating sustainable communities, had previously sponsored this event.
“[NeighborWorks Rochester] had been focusing on the Brooks Landing Neighborhood as part of their Healthy Blocks program, and concluded that focus this past summer to turn their attention to other neighborhoods in the city,” Assistant Dean of Students and Director at Rochester Center for Community Leadership (RCCL), Glenn Cerosaletti said, “so it no longer made sense for them to participate in this event.”
Despite not having NeighborWork’s sponsorship, the event was still planned to take place. The 19th Ward Community Association led the partnership, while Cerosaletti helped facilitate UR’s involvement with sponsorship from UR Residential Life, Wilson Commons Student Activities, the College Center for Advising Services, Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity, the Men’s &
Women’s Ice Hockey teams, $1,000 from the above-listed organizations.
“PKT, WRUR, the hockey teams and the Community Association were instrumental in staffing the event,” Cerosaletti said. “It’s a strong, collaborative partnership–the event wouldn’t happen without UR’s participation, nor without the other partners’ participation.”
According to Assistant Director for Community Service at RCCL Emma Rainwater, all the planning and organizational efforts to create the event served for a greater purpose: to bring the community and UR together.
“The purpose of the event is to create connections between students and the community surrounding the University,” Rainwater said. “It’s a chance to have fun […] and look at the neighborhoods across the river and recognize that it is a community,” Rainwater said.
Cerosaletti said another reason the event persists every year is to make an impact that goes beyond building a community bond.
“One other macro-level impact,” Cerosaletti said, “would be to continue to build positive perceptions of the Southwest Rochester Community, and to counteract negative stereotypes that get perpetuated about the 19th Ward and other Southwest neighborhoods.”
Cerosaletti believes that students should be aware and celebrate the concept of community. “We want students to learn how to be engaged citizens,” Cerosaletti said.
“The river’s not that big,” Rainwater said.