February 16, 2022

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 March 1, 2022.

If you have news or an article to share, please send it to the editor by February 28.

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

NACPRO's Sponsors

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Job Announcements

NEW - Assistant Park and Recreation Director
City of Fort Worth, Texas
$105,378 - $139,625 Annually
Closing Date: Mar 14, 2022

Superintendent of Fleet & Facilities
Lake County Forest Preserves
Lindenhurst, Illinois
$83,191 - $124,784 Annually
Closing Date: Open until filled

Director of Landscape Maintenance
Forest Preserves of Cook County
River Forest, Illinois
$120,016 Annually
Closing Date: March 3, 2022

Parks Services Manager
City of Carlsbad, California
$112,767 - $163,409 Annually
Closing date: Open until filled

Landscape Architect
Metroparks Toledo, Ohio
Salary commensurate with experience
Closing Date: Feb 20, 2022

Conservation Science Manager
Metroparks Toledo, Ohio
$68,137 - $95,393 Annually
Closing Date: Feb 20, 2022

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

Outdoor recreation use in the COVID era

What trends in park visitation are you seeing in your districts during the COVID era? Many parks and trails received record visitation in 2020 and 2021. Have these trends continued? How have they changed over time?

Could provide attendance numbers for 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021, the percent change for each year, and the total percent change from 2019 to 2021 that can be attributed to people participating in outdoor activities.

NACPRO will be compiling the data and sharing it with the membership. Send your data and questions to:

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

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. Elva Espinoza
Executive Secretary
Los Angeles County Dept of Parks & Recreation, California

Mr. Adam Witcraft
Assistant Director
Atlantic County Parks, New Jersey

Mr. Jim Cassidy
Park Ranger Sergeant
Metroparks Toledo, Ohio


Member News

Lake County Forest Preserves Receives $50k Gift for Net-Zero Energy Project
Courtesy of Lake County Forest Preserves

ILLINOIS - The Lake County Forest Preserves received its first naming gift to support a new Environmental Education Facility at Edward L. Ryerson Conservation Area in Riverwoods. Medline, a global healthcare manufacturer and distributor based in Northfield, provided a $50,000 grant to help fund the construction of the net-zero energy facility.

Ryerson has been a center of the Forest Preserves environmental education and programming since it was acquired in 1972. Programs offered here are all based on nature and the environment and designed for all ages. When the new facility is complete, it will replace aging classroom cabins that currently host thousands of school children each year. The new facility is designed to produce enough renewable energy to meet its own annual energy consumption.

“We are grateful for Medline’s support as we work to adopt and promote sustainable building technologies and net-zero energy,” said Alex Ty Kovach, executive director of the Lake County Forest Preserves. “Sustainability is core to our mission as a land conservation organization, and reducing energy use across all District operations is identified in our 100-Year Vision for Lake County as a priority for both organizational sustainability and environmental benefits.

Read more:


Mobile Recreation Program to Serve Park-Poor Areas
Courtesy of Planetizen

CALIFORNIA - It takes time and money to acquire land and build new parks. In fact, it typically takes years before new parks can be provided due to financial, bureaucratic and political issues, and other constraints. Mobile recreation may sound strange at first, but it may be an appropriate strategy to meet the urgent need for additional recreational opportunities in under-resourced areas. The typical mobile recreation approach involves recreation staff going to parking lots or other underutilized spaces in park-poor neighborhoods and bringing along play resources like basketball hoops, soccer goals, skate ramps and their associated protective gear.

In his article, Preston Shoemaker reports that the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) has just launched "Park On the Move." The program will feature DPR staff traveling in vans loaded with equipment for skateboarding, basketball, and soccer, as well as items for other recreational activities. They will go to and set up at various locations in high park need communities, including schools, parking lots, and other spaces. This initiative is supported in part by the National Football League (NFL) through its Super Bowl Legacy Grant program.

Read more:


Research and Resources

Ready to Act on Climate Change?
Courtesy of Parks and Recreation Business

By Savannah Donovan

ILLINOIS - The Urbana Park District has a deep-rooted history of environmental education and stewardship. More recently, the district’s internal Green Team has been promoting environmentally responsible choices in the workplace. In late 2019, however, the team decided it was time for a more comprehensive and deliberate approach to reducing and offsetting carbon emissions. The district wanted to create its own climate-action plan, despite lacking direct experience or a roadmap.

The Green Team co-chairs organized a 13-person steering committee comprised of staff members across all three departments (recreation, planning and operations, and administration) to lead the process. Steering committee members joined because they were passionate about climate change, or because they would be essential to the plan’s ultimate implementation and success. Involving staff members from all facilities and departments was crucial, as it allowed for a more comprehensive understanding of challenges and opportunities throughout the district.

Read more:


From stormwater to farms, U.S. cities put empty lots to use
Courtesy of Reuters

By Carey L. Biron

WASHINGTON, (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - The Brightmoor neighborhood in Detroit, Michigan was already decaying when the recession hit more than a decade ago, said resident Luis Cuenca, leading droves of people to simply walk out on homes they could no longer afford.

By 2010, one in every four homes here in Brightmoor was vacant, according to the local research group Data Driven Detroit. Soon, the demolitions followed - as did the chance to do something different with the empty spaces left behind here.

Empty lots often lead to other parts of a city falling into neglect and disrepair, revitalization experts say, and as vacancy has increased here across the United States over the past decade, cities have struggled with how to respond.

In January, the federal government confirmed that a $350 billion federal pandemic aid package can be used to address vacancy here, freeing up significant funding for local officials.

Read more:


Soft solution to erosion control designed to provide resiliency
Courtesy of Coastal Observer

By Chris Sokoloski

SOUTH CAROLINA - Morgan Park in Georgetown will soon be home to a “living shoreline” that is expected to help slow erosion while at the same time attracting fish, oysters, shrimp and birds.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, living shorelines use plants or other natural elements — sometimes in combination with harder shoreline structures — to stabilize estuarine coasts, bays, and tributaries.

Read more:


In the News

NRPA Launches Inaugural Business Council

The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), the nation’s leading advocate for parks and recreation, today announces the launch of its Business Council — a collaboration that will strengthen the connections between the essential role of parks and recreation and the business sector.

The NRPA Business Council brings together the business sector and park and recreation professionals to solve common challenges together, fuel innovation, foster activism and advocacy, and promote research to enhance the quality of life for all.

Read more:


Outdoor Recreation Leaders Applaud New Bill to Bolster Rural Communities
Courtesy of the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable

Leading outdoor recreation organizations are fully supporting U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer (D-NY) and Senator Michael Bennet’s (D-CO) newly-introduced Rural Outdoor Investment (ROI) Act. This bill provides much-needed capital for rural communities seeking to build and plan for recreation economies.

The Rural Outdoor Investment Act will provide much-needed planning, infrastructure, and business support to communities as they attract a remote workforce, grow jobs, welcome visitors, and strengthen their economies through outdoor recreation.

If passed, the ROI Act’s funding could not come at a better time. Outdoor recreation participation sky-rocketed during the pandemic and shows no signs of receding. At the same time, economic studies continue to show that rural communities that plan for and invest in recreation businesses, access, and infrastructure are more resilient and grow faster with more sustainable economic development.

Read more:


From Food to Fitness, Commercial Activities on the Rise in Seattle Parks
Courtesy of the Urbanist

By Natalie Bicknell Argerious

WASHINGTON - To ensure that City governing rules more accurately reflect current permit practices and better communicate park vending opportunities to the public, Seattle Parks and Recreation has requested City Council to amend the City’s municipal code. The motion was unanimously approved on Wednesday, February 2nd, by the Public Assets and Homelessness Committee, advancing it to a full council vote.

Seattle Parks hopes the amended language will help to continue an increase in commercial activities in parks, a trend Seattle Parks staff cited as being on the rise even before the Covid pandemic put a new spotlight on outdoor dining and recreation. During their presentation to Council, Acting Superintendent Chris Williams stressed that when consistent with the department’s values of “healthy people, healthy environment, and strong communities,” commercial activities are encouraged in public parks because of the activation they provide and the revenue they raise.

Seattle Parks vendor permitting program serves as an important small business incubator, especially for people who are traditionally underrepresented in entrepreneurship.

Read more:


Creating Partnerships for People and Wildlife
Courtesy of NRPA

By Naomi Edelson

In many cases, local and regional park systems currently manage or desire to manage plant and animal species for conservation. These imperiled species would benefit through sharing of monitoring and management expertise and resources. Furthermore, State Wildlife Action Plans require feedback from many, including local partners so that the needs of the entire conservation community are met. While there are examples of collaboration between such state and local entities, there are numerous opportunities for growth for both parties, and because the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act is making its way through Congress, we hope potential opportunities for collaboration through increased funding are in the future.

Not only do we need all levels of government in the conservation sphere to be working together, but also we need all outdoor enthusiasts to work together to create the political will to support these agencies’ work. This means we need hunters, birders and gardeners alike motivated to work together to conserve wildlife and their habitats, unified by a common desire to enjoy the outdoors, hike, paddle, and to pass on a love of nature to youth. Local and regional parks provide critical close-to-home opportunities as well as reach audiences that are underserved in their typical outreach through recreation and education programs, whereas state wildlife agencies typically fall short in these areas, focusing primarily on rural audiences (e.g., hunters and anglers) that generally lack the range of the full diversity of the United States.

Read more:


The Rock Island Trail is a 144-Mile On track to Be Game-Changer for Missouri
Courtesy of the Rails to Trails Conservancy

By Cindy Barks

MISSOURI - After years of advocacy, Governor Mike Parson's announcement stating that Missouri would officially take ownership of the 144-mile Rock Island Railroad corridor marks the final step in railbanking the corridor, which is now destined to be preserved—and enjoyed—as the Rock Island Trail.

All along a 144-mile stretch of Missouri’s old Rock Island Line, rural communities formerly known as railroad towns have been looking forward to a new possibility: a multiuse trail that would revitalize the long-unused train tracks.

The planned Rock Island Trail would intersect the Katy Trail, a popular 240-mile rail-trail route that traverses the rolling terrain along the Missouri River. It also would link up with a recently opened 47-mile segment, the Rock Island Spur of Katy Trail State Park, which connects the Katy Trail to the greater Kansas City area. In all, supporters envision a loop of nearly 400 miles that would span the entire state, from Kansas City to St. Louis.

Read more:


Tyler Technologies Acquires US eDirect
Courtesy of Tyler Technologies

PLANO, Texas - Tyler Technologies, Inc. announced today it has acquired US eDirect, a market-leading provider of technology solutions for campground and outdoor recreation management.

Through this acquisition, Tyler will add US eDirect's Recreation Dynamics product to its digital government and payment services. Recreation Dynamics is a large-scale, enterprise-grade cloud transaction management system focused on the government recreation and tourism industry. Powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS), the solution manages transactions related to campground accommodations, tours and events, passes and memberships, recreation rentals, outdoor licenses, and parking and entry.

"The acquisition of US eDirect augments our current outdoor solution portfolio, allowing us to offer an extensive 'all in one' outdoor recreation solution that will seamlessly integrate with our NIC payments platform," said Elizabeth Proudfit, president of Tyler's NIC Division. "We look forward to welcoming the US eDirect team into the NIC and Tyler family and building on our 20 years of experience in outdoor recreation with a new comprehensive and scalable solution for our public sector clients."

Read more:



Workshop: Developing High-Impact Park Partnerships
Courtesy of the City Parks Alliance

Wednesday, March 30, 2 - 5 pm ET

Partnerships involve mutual effort and investment to accomplish shared goals that are unattainable without such collaboration. Partnerships can be complex and challenging, but they can leverage resources and expertise from the public, private and nonprofit sectors and bring innovative solutions to various challenges when managed well.

Join City Parks Alliance for this skill-building workshop, which will focus on fundamental principles for creating more effective and well-managed partnerships across both agencies and sectors, as well as guidelines for developing effective agreements.

Register now as an individual or a team to be a part of this collaborative learning experience. We offer discounts for CPA members and city teams!

For more information:


Webinar: Walking Towards Peace - Veterans Healing on America's Trails
Courtesy of the Federal Lands Transportation Institute Training Newsletter

Date:  February 17, 2022
Time:  1:00 to 2:30 pm ET
Cost:  Free
Organization:  American Trails

Author Cindy Ross shares current research and perspectives of professional therapists and provides information on organizations devoted to healing veterans in the outdoors. Through the veterans’ collective stories of wartime traumas and their present lives, what becomes clear is that anyone suffering from any form of PTSD may discover the powerful comfort and healing that can be found in the outdoors.

Retired Special Forces Army Ranger, Travis Johnston, will also take part in the webinar. Travis is highlighted in Cindy’s new book, Walking Towards Peace: Veterans Healing on America’s Trails, in which this webinar is about.

For more information:


Webinar: Festivals and Events - The Devil is in the Details
Courtesy of the Federal Lands Transportation Institute Training Newsletter

Date:  February 24, 2022
Time:  1:00 to 2:30 pm ET
Cost:  Free
Organization:  American Trails

Festivals and events are a terrific way to raise funds, create relationships, and generate awareness. However, they can be very time and labor-intensive. During this webinar, learn how to pick the optimum event dates, develop sponsor packages, find sponsors and volunteers, sell tickets online, build a great website, use social media to promote the event, and keep things running smoothly before, during, and after your event.

For more information:


Webinar: Introduction to Trail Assessment Using UTAP and HETAP
Courtesy of the Federal Lands Transportation Institute Training Newsletter

Date:  March 3, 2022
Time:  1:00 to 2:00 pm ET
Cost:  Free
Organization:  American Trails

Beneficial Designs (BD) is a leader in the development of trail assessment. Starting with the Universal Trail Assessment Process (UTAP) which is done by hand, then introducing the High-Efficiency Trail Assessment Process (HETAP) which uses one of two carts developed by Beneficial Designs. This webinar will discuss the assessment work that BD does and how the data is collected and can be viewed by the user.

For more information:


2022 National Outdoor Recreation Conference
Courtesy of the Federal Lands Transportation Institute Training Newsletter

Date:  May 2-5, 2022
Location:  Knoxville, TN
Organization:  Society of Outdoor Recreation Professionals (SORP)

The National Outdoor Recreation Conference brings together recreation resource planners, land managers, organizational partners, researchers, consultants, innovators and leaders in outdoor recreation from across the U.S. and North America. The average conference attendance is ~400, including over 50 presenters. In order to optimize networking opportunities as well as prioritize the health and safety of attendees within the conference venue, we plan to cap attendance at 500.

For more information:

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