Once a year, Nickelodeon and its sister networks like Nick Jr. cease transmission for three hours to encourage children and their parents to get outside and play, preferably partaking in some sort of physical activity.
The Jamaica event was organized largely by Keep Our Streets Safe, an organization founded by Sugar B. Wright. She said Nickelodeon representatives and Councilman Leroy Comrie (D-St. Albans) were among the numerous enthusiastic supporters who helped get it off the ground.
“Get up, get out and play,” Wright said addressing one of the final organizing meetings on Sept. 5.
The park, also known as Liberty Park, is expected to be a flurry of activity on Sept. 21, with youth football in one area and the NYPD’s 103rd Precinct hosting a crime prevention and public safety outreach day nearby.
But Wright said all will just encourage people to come out to the park — which is the aim of KOSS, the Jamaica-based organizers, and the original intent of the children’s television network when it started the event a decade ago.
Admission to the park, located on the southern side of Liberty Avenue between 172nd and 173rd streets, is free.
Activities will include races, dancing, tennis, handball, basketball, rock-climbing and bounce houses.
Aside from sites and activities inside the park, 173rd Street will be closed to traffic between 103th and 107th avenues.
All the activities are free. There will be some free food and beverages while more will be available for sale from vendors. Visitors and participants also will be able to freely access the park’s running track as well as the 103rd Precinct’s event.
Other local participants include the Youth and Tennis Academy, Move Your Body Kids, Power Moves Gymnastic and Fitness and Honor’s House Corp., which are scheduled to facilitate sports, dancing and other exercise activities.
There also will be a DJ and music.
And while the main event is scheduled for Brooklyn, Nickelodeon and its sponsors not only permit the offshoot events, they actively encourage them.
The Worldwide Day of Play website includes a 34-page file that offers communities and civic organizations tips and promotional assistance for those who are interested in hosting their own grassroots events.
The tips include working with local chapters of national organizations such as the Boys and Girls Clubs, and local afterschool organizations.
“Such combined efforts will show the world how the Big Apple and its citizens are serious about healthy, active living — especially for kids,” said a statement on the event’s website.
Big Brothers and Sisters of New York City also will be hosting its ninth annual Race for the Kids fundraiser in conjunction with the event.
The aim is to sign up enough teams to collect $1 million in an effort to provide mentors to 500 New York City-area children.
The park is accessible by the Q83 and X64 bus lines, which stop along Liberty Avenue.
Additional information on the Prospect Park event and related activities is available online at nick.com/thebighelp/road-to-wwdop/.
The website also has information and tips for those interested in setting up their own activities in 2014.
When: Sept. 21, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Det. Keith Williams Park, Liberty Avenue, Jamaica