City officials have modified the schedule for upcoming Summer Fun online registration after technical glitches occurred last Saturday.
Summer Fun, a popular program for children ages 6 to 13 held at city parks across Oahu, is being offered at no charge for the second year in a row.
The online registration system last Saturday experienced a server bottleneck when it opened up to an unusually large volume of visits from families in districts 1 and 2 covering Hawaii Kai to Aiea, preventing many from being able to register.
As a result, Department of Parks and Recreation staff ended up providing in-person registration until noon that day, and worked in following days to address outstanding issues.
DPR said registrations for districts 1 and 2 will remain open until all spots are filled, but it does not anticipate holding a make-up registration at this time.
Online registration for districts 3 and 4, meanwhile, will now be split into two days so that large numbers of Oahu families do not access the Parks and Recreation Online System website at the same time.
The new schedule for upcoming online registration will be as follows:
>> District 3 (Pearlridge to Waianae to Wahiawa): Opens 9 a.m. Saturday.
>> District 4 (Waialua to Waimanalo): Opens 9 a.m. on Saturday, May 22
“We apologize for the frustration and inconvenience this online system caused to thousands of Oahu families last Saturday,” said DPR Director Laura H. Thielen in a news release. “We are confident that the adjustments will make these upcoming online registrations much smoother, but out of an abundance of caution we are splitting the registrations for Districts 3 & 4. We want to assure parents that this free Summer Fun Program will continue to uphold its safety and quality standards despite these registration issues. The overwhelming demand for these programs is evident, and we look forward to providing our communities with much needed keiki fun, education, and socialization.”
Thielen said DPR expected high demand, but underestimated how many families would want to register for Summer Fun this year. An estimated 10,000 to 12,000 users were trying to simultaneously register online last Saturday, she said.
The city will streamline the sites and deploy 12 times more servers in anticipation of potentially tens of thousands of site visits in a matter of minutes, according to IT director Mark Wong.
It will also continue testing and improving the PROS system today and Friday in anticipation of further online registrations, which may result in some minor delays.
Families that do not have internet access can still register in person at their local Summer Fun site up to noon on designated Saturdays.
The Summer Fun program can accommodate up to 6,000 children at 62 sites islandwide, according to Thielen, but that will also depend on whether it can hire enough staff for the sites.
DPR is still hiring for Summer Fun, and is in particular need for districts 2 and 4. Anyone interested can visit bit.ly/SummerFunJobs to apply.
In previous years, when Summer Fun registration was held in person, parents would often camp out in long lines to reserve a spot.
More information about the free 2021 Summer Fun Program is available at bit.ly/SummerFunOahu.