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New recreation supervisor hoping to expand programs

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By Sandy Barnes

While settling into his new position as recreation supervisor for athletics at the Wulf Recreation Center, Joe Gonzales is also looking at the possibility of expanding program offerings.

“We do look to areas where we can expand,” Gonzales said. “It would be nice to explore options.”

Meanwhile, Gonzales is busy scheduling and managing current teams, and also coaching volleyball.

“Right now, volleyball is our main thing,” he said. “I’m a very visual person,” he added. “I like to go out there and see what is going on.”

The Evergreen Park and Recreation District offers volleyball programs for elementary and middle school students and also adult leagues. Games are held at Wulf Rec Center on Tuesday and Friday nights.

The biggest upcoming sport is basketball, which is offered to youngsters in second to eighth grades, said Gonzales.

“We want to emphasize the learning of the game,” he said while talking about park district athletics. “We want to show how good our program is.”

Before accepting the position in Evergreen, Gonzales supervised athletic programs for the Foothills Park and Recreation District in South Jeffco.

When he learned about the position in Evergreen, Gonzales said he pursued the opportunity.

“I’m very excited to be here,” he said.

Gonzales replaced former athletics supervisor Brent Berninger, who accepted a position with the city of Lakewood.

Gonzales said he appreciates the help that park staff and the community have given him since he started working in Evergreen at the first of the month. 

“This community has been amazing,” he said.

As recreation supervisor, Gonzales also said it’s important to work with other park district staff members.

Gonzales has extensive experience in athletics, having played baseball and tennis in high school and college. While attending Green Mountain High School in Lakewood, Gonzales was named Athlete of the Year in 2003.

“Sports came natural to me,” said Gonzales. “My key sport was baseball. I’ve always loved baseball.”

While attending the University of Nebraska at Kearney, Gonzales played college baseball. In his position with EPRD, Gonzales said he is trying to incorporate his background as an athlete.

“I always promote getting out and doing something,” he said.

While working with youth recreation leagues, Gonzales said he would like to see kids have options to try out different sports. 

Gonzales also is interested in developing the tennis program at Wulf in which community residents have expressed interest.

“We want to make sure we’re fulfilling our responsibilities,” he said.

 

Contact reporter Sandy Barnes at  HYPERLINK "mailto:sandy@evergreenco.com" sandy@evergreenco.com or call 303-350-1042.