City of Columbia Residents Invited to Discover City Parks

Month-long celebration includes Passport Challenge

Summer is here, which means it’s time to get out and discover the great things happening at your local parks and recreation centers. This July, explore the local parks and recreation system with the Columbia Parks & Recreation Department as we celebrate Park and Recreation Month, A Lifetime of Discovery

Playgrounds, rec centers, sports leagues, summer camps are just a few of the things that come to mind when we think of parks and recreation. But, parks and recreation is so much more than that. During Park and Recreation Month, discover all the ways parks and recreation can improve quality of life, like senior programs; innovative health and wellness opportunities; community celebrations; outdoor education; flood mitigation; maintenance; and more. 

“Our parks and recreations centers are the hubs of activity in a community, from playing on a basketball court to learning about the history of the Columbia Canal,” Columbia Parks & Recreation Director Randy Davis said. “We provide spaces for seniors to exercise or fellowship together, programs where children can learn a new skill in computing or opportunities for the public to learn about local watersheds.”

“We encourage everyone to visit a City park to learn how Parks & Recreation plays a major role in one’s quality of life and is key to a thriving community,” Davis said. 

The department is celebrating Park and Recreation Month, an initiative of the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), by inviting citizens to explore various City parks through a citywide Passport Challenge. Participants can complete the passport by answering a series of questions related to the features or history of a park or facility.

The Passport to Columbia’s Parks is available online to download HERE. Passports are also available at the Parks & Recreation Department administration office (inside Earlewood Park), 1111 Recreation Drive, Columbia, SC, 29201.

Completed passports must be turned in to the department’s administration office Monday through Friday between 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The first 100 participants to complete a passport and submit it will earn a prize. All completed passports will be entered in a drawing for a Grand Prize. Only one entry per person will be accepted. 

Completed passports will be collected through Tuesday, July 31 at 5 p.m. The winner will be announced on Wednesday, August 1 via the department’s social media account @ColaSCParksRec on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram

Participants under the age of 16 should be accompanied by an adult while completing the Passport Challenge. Challenge participants must follow all park rules, including all posted park hours. 

Participants are encouraged to take a #parkselfie and share it with the department using the hashtags: #playexploregrow and #DiscoverJuly.



Summer Movies and Concerts at Finlay Park



Atlantic Starr, The Dazz Band, Confunkshun & More to Perform at City’s Summer Concert Series

National recording artists Atlantic Starr, The Dazz Band and Confunkshun are set to heat up the Finlay Park stage at the City of Columbia’s live outdoor concert series, the Columbia Parks & Recreation Department announced. 

The free Summer Concert Series will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. on the following dates:

  • June 30 – Elliott & The Untouchables (Blues)
  • July 14– The Dazz Band (R&B/Funk)
  • July 28– Confunkshun (R&B/Funk)

This year, the Parks & Recreation Department will bring back Karaoke Idol. Guests can register to sing beginning at 6 p.m. on the day of the concert. Participants must be age 18 or older. Prizes will be given to the weekly winner. 

All concerts will be held in Finlay Park, 930 Laurel St., and are free and open to the public. 

Attendees are welcome to bring blankets and lawn chairs. No pets, glass or alcoholic beverages allowed. Food vendors will be available.

For more information, call the Parks and Recreation Department at 803-545-3100.




City’s Summer Movies Series at Finlay Park

The City of Columbia’s Summer Movies Series will kick off on Friday, June 1 with “The Emoji Movie” at Finlay Park, 930 Laurel Street.

Movies will be shown every other Friday night from June 1 through July 27. The following movies are free and open to the public:

  • June 29 – “Hoodwinked”
  • July 13 – “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle”
  • July 27 – “Justice League”

Pre-show activities begin at 7:45 p.m. Movies will begin at sunset. 

Attendees can bring blankets, lawn chairs and coolers. No pets, glass containers and alcoholic beverages allowed. 

For more information, call the Parks and Recreation Department at 803-545-3100.






Columbia Parks & Recreation Department 

1111 Recreation Drive, Columbia, SC 29201

P: 803-545-3100 | F: 803-343-8744

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