Louisville offers guidance on safe places for kids to celebrate - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Louisville offers guidance on safe places for kids to celebrate spring break

Posted: Updated:
The local community centers are responding by putting an emphasis on free programs for middle school and high school students -- more than in years past. The local community centers are responding by putting an emphasis on free programs for middle school and high school students -- more than in years past.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- LMPD has a message for local parents heading into spring break: Do not send your kids to the beach unsupervised.

Web sites market Panama City Beach, Florida, as the ultimate location for high school spring break, though LMPD doesn't want Louisville parents to take the bait."We don't want to have any tragedies here in our community," said Lt. Col. Kim Kraeszig of Louisville Metro Police.

The warning comes after seven people were shot in the vacation hot spot, exposing hardcore partying and a spring break season described as being out of control.

"I would be very careful...(and) not allow a young 16- or 17-year-old to vacation by themselves because it just puts themselves in situations I don't think they're mature enough to handle yet," Kraeszig said.

There are concerns at home as well that the typical rise in nuisance crimes like vandalism and break-ins could be much worse. Louisville has seen a recent surge in violent juvenile crime.

"Bring your kids to us," said Ben Johnson, assistant director of Metro Parks and Recreation.

Johnson said the local community centers in Louisville are putting an emphasis on free programs for middle school and high school students -- more than in years past.

"Next week we have....basketball, we have Dare-to-Care hot meals that we serve," said Johnson. "We have computer labs. We have partnerships to do educational programming."

Staff from all 13 community centers in the city have also been ordered to go door-to-door in their neighborhoods, trying to get more teens to participate.

"It can be a struggle," Johnson said. "We are competing with a number of factors. Sometimes it's just not cool to be inside a building or with a structured program."

The city is asking parents to help.

"Whether you decide to let your kids go out of town for spring break, or stay here, it's important to sit down and have expectations with your kids," Kraeszig said.

The message: youth development is far better than youth detention.

"You're going to see a lot of officers out of their patrol cars," Kraeszig said. "They're going to be on ATVs, bike [and] walking details, you'll see our horse patrol out and we will be prepared if there is any trouble"

The city published a special guide to spring break: a book listing 100 free and fun activities for kids of all ages in Louisville, broken down by neighborhood. It includes everything from archery to art, sports camps, video game tournaments, cooking classes, and much more. The magazines are available a JCPS schools and Louisville library locations.

Copyright 2015 by WDRB News. All rights reserved.
Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 WDRB. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.