September 14, 2021

In This Issue...

Best Practices Forum
Welcome New Members
Member News
Research and Resources
In the News
Job Announcements


The National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials is a non-profit professional organization that advances official policies that promote county and regional park and recreation issues while providing members with opportunities to network, exchange ideas and best practices, and enhance professional development.

Learn more about us at:


The next issue of NACPRO News will be delivered on September 28, 2021.

If you have news or an article to share, please send it to the editor by September 27.

Brenda Adams-Weyant
(814) 927-8212
[email protected]

NACPRO's Sponsors

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Job Announcements

NEW - Senior Design & Development Supervisor
Whatcom County Parks & Recreation
Bellingham, Washington
$6,259 - $8,430 Monthly
Closing date: Oct 29, 2021

NEW - Director of Brand Strategy and Community Engagement
Glenview Park District
Glenview, Illinois
$80,000 - $95,000 Annually
Closing date: Oct 3, 2021

Assistant Director of Facility Operations
Fox Valley Park District
Aurora, Illinois
$58,000 - $80,000 Annually
Closing date: Sep 20, 2021

Park Ranger Supervisor
Santa Clara County Parks and Recreation Department
Los Gatos, California
$109,458 - $133,078 Annually
Closing date: Sep 20, 2021

Executive Director
Belvidere Park District
Belvidere, Illinois
$93,000 - $116,000 Annually
Closing date: Sep 15, 2021

Got a vacancy to fill? NACPRO will post your vacancy on our website and email a copy to our mailing list of over 1100 parks and recreation professionals for a fee of $100 for NACPRO members and $200 for non-members. NACPRO membership is $90/person.

For more information:

Best Practices Forum

Got an issue you need advice on? Or a best practice you want to share? Send us the details and we will publish it in the next NACPRO News.


Welcome New Members

Ms. Rebekah Snyder
Director of Community Engagement & Partnerships
Lake County Forest Preserves, Illinois

Ms. Jaime Polley
Wausau-Marathon County Parks, Recreation & Forestry, Wisconsin

Mr. Marcus Aumann
Assistant Director of Community Services
Wausau-Marathon County Parks, Recreation & Forestry, Wisconsin


Member News

Ottawa County Parks breaks ground on West Michigan’s first public observatory
Courtesy of the Grand Valley Lanthorn

By Hanna Halstead

MICHIGAN - This fall, construction is underway for West Michigan’s first public observatory, which will be located at Hemlock Crossing County Park. The observatory will be operated by Ottawa County Parks and the Shoreline Amateur Astronomical Association (SAAA), and there will be a ceremony to celebrate the opening of the observatory on Sept. 11.

The observatory features a permanently mounted, properly aligned and adjusted telescope, for viewing planets, stars and other space activity.

Read more:


Research and Resources

GP RED Presents: Community Resilience – Response and Recovery
Courtesy of GP RED

Learn from this educational presentation summary from Daniel Hernandez, MPA, Director of Parks and Recreation for Clark County, Nevada, and Donna Kuethe, Executive Director, GP RED, as they discuss the challenges and opportunities for dealing with natural disasters at a GP RED National Think Tank. They review the issues and how agencies are dealing with them, and a brief overview of the Operation Recreation Response (ORR) initiative.

For more information:


Engaging Diverse Groups in Building Community Resiliency through Stewardship
Courtesy of NRPA

As leaders in connecting communities to nature, it is vital that park and recreation professionals are inclusive and welcoming in their work. Advocates, stewards and volunteers are key to the success of ecologically balanced park projects and spaces, but these stakeholders must reflect the communities these spaces serve.

NRPA’s Engaging Diverse Groups in Building Community Resiliency through Stewardship will help professionals communicate about nature and natural resources thoughtfully with their community while building mutually beneficial diverse partnerships that focus on nature with equity at the forefront of their approach.

Download the guide:


New Life Jacket Loaner Station opens at Phil Moore Park
Courtesy of

By Meghann Stamps

KENTUCKY - Tuesday, September 7th, at Phil Moore Park in Bowling Green, Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources showed off their brand new Life Jacket Loaner Station.

Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources and Parks and Recreation teamed up together to build this new station when they noticed more and more people taking to the water for fun over the course of the pandemic.

“We all know because of Covid that everybody was locked out, and it pushed people to the outdoors,” said Boating Education Coordinator for Kentucky Marcus Bowling. “So, we noticed over the last two years that we had a large number of individuals buying kayaks at Walmart, Rural King, or wherever and going to the water. We decided that we wanted to partner and start an initiative for life jacket loaner stations.”

Read more:


Manatee County Parks uses technology to save money and manpower
Courtesy of Parks and Recreation Business

By David Shurmur

FLORIDA - In January 2019, Manatee County moved into the 21st century of field painting with its first GPS, robotic field-painting robot. It was purchased for the Premier Sports Campus, a 75-acre, natural-turf facility that brings in high-level clients and tournaments, such as U.S. Soccer, the USL Showcase, and the Developmental Academy Showcase, to name a few. After 2 years of using this technology, officials have seen the benefits this could bring to all of their athletic facilities and have since purchased two more robots, making the days of measuring and pulling string a thing of the past.

It is an investment to purchase or lease a turf tank robot, but the return is greater than the cost. The county uses less paint and time to mark a field compared to “traditional” painting methods. For example, for an event that requires 20 fields to be painted, it would take two to four employees a full week of 8+-hour days to complete the work. Now, with the robot, the same job is done in 2 to 3 regular work days with one staff member operating the robot. In addition to labor, there has also been a savings in paint costs; a typical soccer field can be completed using about three gallons of paint instead of six.

Read more:


In the News

The Milwaukee River Greenway took decades to build. But it has become the wilderness in our own backyard.
Courtesy of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

By John Gurda

WISCONSIN - The wonder hasn't worn off. Every time I visit the Milwaukee River Greenway — on foot, by bike or in a canoe — I’m amazed that this sprawling urban wilderness exists. Any community would be overjoyed to have nearly 900 acres of public green space and an eight-mile stretch of equally public river frontage within its corporate limits. The remarkable fact about this particular wilderness is that it begins just one-and-a-half miles from Milwaukee’s City Hall. Accessible to all and protected in perpetuity, the Greenway is one of our community’s greatest natural treasures.

There are better-known expanses of urban green space in North America, places like Central Park in New York, Golden Gate Park in San Francisco and Stanley Park in Vancouver, but those civic jewels are largely tamed and heavily trafficked. Our Greenway is still so wild that in its center you can easily imagine that you’re nowhere near a major city, or even a small town.

Read more:


Disability Community Shut Out of Plans for Carousel House Recreation Center
Courtesy of Hidden City

By Kimberly Haas

PENNSYLVANIA - The days appear to be numbered for Philadelphia’s only recreation center dedicated to residents with physical or cognitive disabilities. Old photos of Carousel House at 4300 Avenue of the Republic depict a happy place, bustling with all kinds of physical and social activities. Images today paint a different story, at least on the outside. Surrounded by a 12-foot chain link fence, the playful circular building is showing some wear. Missing sections of its oversized white lattice trim and multi-colored signage proclaiming the building’s name are either broken or gone. The City decided to permanently close the center in June. Demolition is now on the horizon.

What has also transpired during Carousel House’s three decades is a change in attitude and law regarding services for the disabled community, codified by the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990. “A key concept of the ADA is integration,” said Rocco Iacullo, staff attorney for Disability Rights PA. “Our philosophy, in keeping with the ADA in both letter and spirit, is that Philadelphia needs to insure that its recreation programs are accessible to all citizens.”

Read more:



Trail Academy Pro 4-Part Series in October 2021
Courtesy of American Trails

American Trails is partnering with Santa Cruz Mountain Trail Stewardship (SCMTS) and offering learning credits for FREE to attendees of their Trail Academy Pro Training Series!

This is a recurring series on Wednesdays in October 2021 from 6:00 - 8:00 pm: October 6, October 13, October 20, October 27

Trail Academy Pro dives deep into complex topics like scouting, mapping, and progressive trail development to take you from trail zero to trail hero in a matter of weeks.

When you sign up for Trail Academy Pro, you'll get more than just learning credits. This four-week immersive course also includes 1:1 online support from SCMTS' expert trail building team, and fun homework assignments to help you test your skills.

Learn everything you need to plan, build and maintain sustainable trails using today's best practices in just a few weeks.

For more information:


Webinar: Feasibility Study of the 90-Mile Multi-Use Ohlone-Portolá Heritage Trail

Date: September 15, 2021
Time: 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm ET
Cost: Free
Organization: American Trails

A Spanish expedition in search of Monterey Bay led to the accidental "discovery" of San Francisco Bay in 1769 from atop a ridge in today's San Mateo County in California.

To mark the 250th anniversary of this event, an effort was undertaken to tell the story of the expedition and of the native people who greeted the Spanish warmly, but whose lives and culture were nearly eradicated within a few short years. The goal of the feasibility study was to designate a 90-mile multi-use trail on public lands that traces the steps of the Spanish expedition and highlights the native people they encountered.

California State Parks gave the Planning Merit award to San Mateo County Parks Department for the Ohlone-Portolá Heritage Trail at the California State Parks Trail and Greenways Conference in 2020.

For more information:


Webinar: Best Practices for Designing lnclusive Water Play Destinations
Courtesy of PlayCore

Date: Thursday, September 16
Time: 2:00 - 3:15 p.m. EDT
Registration Code: COMMUNITY

Water is a powerful medium that naturally inspires social interactions, offers sensory-rich opportunities, and ignites joyful experiences that enrich the mind, body, and spirit. Celebrate the many research-based health benefits of water and empower communities to effectively make the case for aquatic play destinations for people of all ages and abilities! This session will review design best practices to create multigenerational water play destinations that are more usable, to more people, to the greatest extent possible. By thoughtfully addressing the developmental needs of the whole child, communities can provide meaningful opportunities for physical, cognitive, communicative, social/emotional, and sensory development for all children. Design considerations and implications will be demonstrated through inspiring case examples to help communities champion water play as a valid solution to healthier, happier communities.

For more information:


Webinar: Civilian Climate Corps

Date: September 22, 2021
Time: 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm ET
Cost: Free
Organization: Society of Outdoor Recreation Professionals (SORP)

A part of a proposed American Jobs Plan calls for $10 billion to launch a new large-scale 21st century CCC to combat the 21st century problem. The Civilian Climate Corps, as it would be called, would employ thousands of young people to address the threat of climate change, strengthen the country's natural defenses and maintain its ailing public lands. A number of congressional bills related to a civilian climate corps have been introduced recently. Join our panel in sorting through what's on the table, what's on the horizon, where there is alignment with outdoor recreation, and potential steps to implementation.

For more information:


Webinar: Strategies for Civilian Climate Corps Program Investments

Date: September 23, 2021
Time: 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm ET
Cost: Free
Organization: American Trails

Investment in a Civilian Climate Corps (CCC) could be transformational in addressing climate impacts on our trails, supporting local sustainability initiatives, and engaging passionate young adults in climate-impact projects. There are currently more than 130 nonprofit and state-run Service and Conservation Corps across the country. These programs have decades of experience completing trail and infrastructure projects. They have been partnering with community stakeholders, nonprofits, and resource management agencies for many years on advocacy, developing service-learning career pathways, and providing disaster relief. With proposals for a CCC moving forward, there is a new opportunity for Corps and partners to strategize how to get more work done with a climate-resiliency focus. This webinar will highlight two successful Corps projects, demonstrating the potential of a national CCC initiative that's supported by diverse partner funding, resources, and local community input.

For more information:


Webinar: Rails-with-Trails - Best Practices and Lessons Learned

Date: September 28, 2021
Time: 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm ET
Cost: Free
Organization: American Trails

Many communities across the United States recognize the benefits of developing shared use paths and other trails to make transportation network connections for bicyclists and pedestrians and to increase physical activity and improve health. A new report from the U.S. Department of Transportation, Rails-with-Trails: Best Practices and Lessons Learned, examines safety, design, and liability issues associated with the development of shared-use paths and other trails adjacent to active railroad and transit rights-of-way. It explores lessons learned from the experience of rails-with-trails, and suggests best practices to enhance safety and security for railroads, transit, and trail users. During this webinar, the authors will share findings, recommendations, and lessons learned.

For more information:


SHIFT Summit

Date: October 18-20, 2021
Location: Grand Junction, CO
Organization: GP RED (Research, Education, and Development)

The 2021 SHIFT Summit theme is Ensuring Access to Nature – For Human Health and the Environment, with a focus on advancing equitable access to preventive health through nature and the outdoors. The health benefits of nature are now well documented. This Annual Summit brings together researchers, funders, educators, retailers, and conservationists, along with outdoor recreation, health, military, and nature therapy professionals who share experiences, evidence, and ideas for better linking of both humans and nature. The Summit is based on sound science combined with experiential, health, stewardship, and land management aspects to balance equitable reciprocity and access to the places, flora, and fauna that we all need to exist and thrive.

For more information:


2021 Virtual National Trails Workshop

Date: November 1-4, 2021
Location: Online
Organization: Partnership for the National Trails System

Join PNTS from the convenience of your home or office for presentations and interactive sessions focused on:
- Conserving Trail Lands
- Collaboration and Engagement
- Strengthening Organizations and Partnerships

For more information:

NACPRO | PO Box 74, Marienville, PA 16239 | (814) 927-8212