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Leisure Alternatives

Portsmouth Public Library

(Click here for the PPL Website)

Visit your local branch (Main 393-8501, Churchland 686-2538, Manor 465-2916, or Cradock 393-8759) and check out a book and our displays! Remember “Reading is Fun-damental!” Check out the featured displays at each branch.

Storytimes and Crafts
Storytimes for families and small home daycares are held weekly at all locations. Programs are Thursday mornings at 10:30 am at the Churchland, Cradock and Manor Branches, and Tuesday morning at 10:30 at the Main Library. Large groups should call to book programs for another time. Crafts are held monthly at all locations. Please call or go by your local branch for specific times.

Friends of the Library
Friends of the Library meet quarterly and often include an author, program, or speaker that is open to the public. Book Sales are open to the public and held at the Main Library from Noon until 4:00 pm on the Saturday following the 2nd Friday of each month …snap up some bargains for your own library or to give as gifts!

Portsmouth Museums

Courthouse Galleries
Portsmouth Museums are all within walking distance of each other. Take a stroll and find something of interest for all family members.

Children’s Museum of Virginia

221 High Street | 757-393-5258
The state’s largest children’s museum, offering a wide variety of interactive, hands-on exhibits, temporary exhibits, planetarium and an antique toy and model train collection. Special programs, workshops and demonstrations are available.

Portsmouth Art & Cultural Center

420 High Street | 757-393-8543
Features temporary exhibits of national and international artists in a variety of media. Art workshops are available.

Lightship Portsmouth Museum
Water and London Streets | 757-393-8741
This restored lightship, a National Historic Landmark, was commissioned in 1915 to guide ships through treacherous waters.

Portsmouth Naval Shipyard Museum
2 High Street | 757-393-8591
A tribute to the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, the oldest shipyard in the country. Adjacent is the first order Fresnel lens pavilion featuring the 1896 USCG Light from Hog Island. Two hundred and fifty prisms make this lens a riverfront landmark.

Virginia Sports Hall of Fame and Museum

206 High Street | 757-393-8031
In April 2005, the Hall of Fame opened it's new 35,000 square-foot facility in Downtown Portsmouth, featuring the Game Time interactive hall with hands on fun for the whole family, an updated Hall of Honor, a dynamic digital theater, the Campus Champions exhibit focused on Virginia’s colleges and universities, and more. The Hall also offers special educational programs for school groups and field trips. Established in 1972, the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame & Museum has been proud to honor Virginia’s contributions to the world of sports as the Commonwealth’s official hall of fame.


Golf in Portsmouth

The Links Golf Training Center is located at City Park and features a lighted driving range, 9-hole golf course, and an 18-hole natural grass putting course. Designed as a golf learning center, The Links offers a variety of teaching programs to include junior clinics, ladies clinics, and individual instruction programs. Instruction covers the full swing, pitching, chipping, putting, etiquette and rules.

Each year The Links hosts three junior tournaments as well as the Portsmouth City Senior Championship. In recent years, The Links has combined with the USGA Juniors Program and the Beazley Foundation to encourage golf development in urban areas. For more information on these programs and private lessons at The Links, contact Matt Watson, Teaching Professional and his staff at 757-465-1500.

Once golf becomes a habit, or at least a regular itch…try the Bide-A-Wee course. Reopened in April 1999, the $8 million Curtis Strange and Tom Clark renovation has earned this jewel of a course Golf Digest's distinction of "most improved course in the nation". Includes 18-hole championship course, driving range, grille and full service Pro Shop. Adam Relan is the PGA Head Golf Professional and can be reached at 757-393-8600. The Bide-A-Wee Pavilion is on the grounds, and is available for rental for special events and catered meetings.



If Fresh Water Fishing is your passion or a passing hobby, the City of Portsmouth Public Utilities Department has over 1200 acres of lakes available. Lake Cohoon, Lake Meade and Lake Speights Run are physically located in the City of Suffolk. The Virginia Commission of Game and Inland Fisheries provides the fisheries management of the lakes. The lakes are stocked with bass, stripped bass (Meade), black crappie, bream, flyers, bluegill, chain pickerel, channel crappie, pumpkinseed, redear, warmouth, white and channel catfish and white perch.

A City of Portsmouth permit and EITHER a City of Suffolk or a State of Virginia fishing license is required to fish in the lakes. Children under the age of 16 do not require a City of Suffolk or State of Virginia fishing license. Annual permits are $20-$40 depending on age and residency. Day permits are $2.00. Boat rentals and launch facilities are available. Boats must be properly permitted and motors may not exceed 10 h.p.

Further information, brochures, maps and permit forms are available by calling the Watershed Superintendent's Office Monday-Friday from 7 am - 3:30 pm at 757-539-2201 x 223.  Some forms are available by clicking here.

Fishing Photo


Websites of Interest

Please let us know if your organization would like to be added to this list:

www.w4pox.org (Amateur Radio)
www.tidewaterstriders.com (Running)
www.pga.com (More Golf)
www.lpga.com (Women's Golf)
www.walkvirginia.com (Walking)
www.usms.org (Master's Swimming)
www.hofflercreek.org (Hoffler Creek Wildlife Refuge)
www.horseshoepitching.com (Horseshoes)
www.dgif.state.va.us (Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries)
www.NRPA.org (National Parks and Recreation Association)
www.VRPS.com (Virginia Recreation and Parks Society)
www.ext.vt.edu (Virginia Extension Service)
http://groups.hamptonroads.com/SOVA2 (Click on Portsmouth Sidebar for Special Olympics Portsmouth)
www.blazesports.com (Disabled Athletes)
www.pavilionconcerts.com (nTelos Performing Arts Amphitheater)
www.volunteerhr.org (Volunteer Hampton Roads)
www.charactercounts.org (Character Counts! Resources)
www.portsmouthfamilies.com (Portsmouth Family Resources)
www.gosportartsfestival.com (Gosport Arts Festival)
www.umojafestportsmouth.com (Annual Umoja Festival)
www.feedingamerica.org/ (Feeding America)


City of Portsmouth, Virginia · All Rights Reserved · Portsmouth City Hall · 801 Crawford Street · Portsmouth, VA 23704 · 757-393-8000