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The Summer Night Lights program is a public and private partnership undertaken by the City of Los Angeles Mayor’s Office of Gang Reduction & Youth Development (GRYD) and The GRYD Foundation.GRYD-square-logo

Summer Night Lights (SNL) is part of the GRYD Comprehensive strategy, which is directed at strengthening community resiliency to the influence of gangs and gang violence. SNL operates at 32 locations across the City of Los Angeles, keeping recreation centers and parks open between the hours of 7pm – 11pm throughout the summer months.

Play Rugby USA has partnered with Mayor Eric Garcetti and SNL for the past 3 years, using flag rugby as a vehicle for social change in 13 different communities. The success of the 2014 pilot season saw expansion to 5 new parks in 2015 and a different 5 in 2016.

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List of Parks & Recreation Centers that have now experienced Rugby.


  • Cypress Park / Northeast Region at Highland Park Recreation Center
  • Ramona Gardens / Hollenbeck at El Sereno Recreation Center
  • Rampart at Toberman Recreation Center


  • Central Northeast at Glassell Park Recreation Center
  • Central Hollenbeck at Costello Recreation Center
  • Central Hollenbeck at Montecito Heights Recreation Center
  • Central Hollenbeck at Ramona Gardens Housing Development
  • South 77th at Van Ness Recreation Center


  • North Valley at Hubert Humphrey Recreation Center
  • North Valley at Sun Valley Recreation Center
  • South Los Angeles at Imperial Courts Recreation Center
  • South Los Angeles at Jackie Tatum / Harvard Recreation Center
  • South Los Angeles at Nickerson Gardens Recreation Center

SNL expands the menu of activities at each site beyond what is traditionally offered, bringing sports, arts and recreational activities, resource fairs, health screenings, workshops, jobs, and connections to resources that residents can utilize year round. Summer Night Lights with the Fall Friday Nights and Youth Squad 360 programming all work together to transform lives here in Los Angeles.

Play Rugby USA has seen tremendous participation at the various Recreation Centers, growing from 489 participants in 2015 to well over 550 students in 2016. The rugby program has had some fantastic feedback from the first-time participants:

“I love that we have to throw the ball back, it’s a fun challenge!”

“Rugby is like football but a lot more fun!”

A parent commented: “we really appreciate Summer Night Lights in our community it means a lot to us and thanks for bringing a new sport into our community”

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Play Rugby USA would like to thank Youth Development Mentors Harrison Herndon, Matt Raba, Nate Bolton and Nick Freitas for their involvement over the summer months with the wonderful Summer Night Lights initiative. A massive thanks also to Adrienne Newsom, Andrea Avila, Jessica Oleta, Jeannette Duenez and Jose Ibarra-Virgen from the GRYD Foundation.

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“We love being involved in the community, and are so proud to be working with an amazing organization like the GRYD Foundation, really making lasting change in the communities in Los Angeles. We are looking forward to a brilliant 2017 summer next year!” – Dallen Stanford, PRUSA Los Angeles Program Director.

SNL 2015 Statistics:

Community Engagement

  • 723,507 total estimated community participants
  • 780 average attendance per park/night

Meals Served

452,192 total meals served

 Health & Wellness

  • 503 participants received free HIV/STD testing and information (offered in partnership with Department of Public Health)
  • 2,564 participants received free health education materials

 Lakers Girl dance clinic

110 participants at one site

 Zumba clinics

7,574 participants


  • 21,990 community members participated in art workshops
  • 19,177 community members participated in an SNL art workshop featuring spoken word, silk screening, ceramics, dance, illustration, and painting


SNL Sports Leagues: Each site offered 2 of 3 sports leagues (basketball, softball, or soccer) for 9,642 youth & adults

 Specialized sports clinics

  • Los Angeles D-Fenders (4 clinics): 164 participants
  • Los Angeles Sparks (4 clinics): 173 participants
  • Los Angeles Galaxy (4 clinics): 265 participants
  • Go Stadia Soccer (4 clinics): 385 participants
  • Los Angeles Kings (2 clinics): 195 participants

Sports programming enhancements

  • Rugby at 5 sites: 489 participants
  • Tennis at 4 sites: 441 participants
  • Galaxy KickStarter Reading Program at 2 sites: 130 participants
  • Dodgers #WeLoveLAReaders program at 3 sites: 75 participants

Employment / Hiring

  • 326 youth hired as SNL Youth Squad members (ages 17-24)
  • 63 Site Coordinators
  • 16 Cluster Coordinators
  • 8 SNL Office Staff
  • 39 Artists (visual arts, music, dance, culinary)
  • 150 SNL/seasonal Community Intervention Workers (CIWs)
  • 186 Coaches
  • 229 Sports Officials

 City Services

  • Library Outreach: 2,866 participants reached and provided library materials and information on obtaining a library card
  • MTA: 2,550 participants were provided safety presentations and information on how to obtain free Metro passes (based on MTA requirements)
  • Work Readiness (HIRE LA Youth) Certification: 240 Youth Squad completed and earned a Work Readiness Certificate

More information can be found at:

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