Five Tips to Help You Get Grant Funding

Kellie May | February 5, 2015
NRPA is excited to announce the availability of $1.8 million to local park and recreation agencies to support their out-of-school time programs thanks to the Walmart Foundation. This grant program builds on the success we all had in 2014 increasing meals to children in low income communities and implementing healthy eating and physical activity standards. Read more

My Two Cents on Revenue School (and clichés)

Paul Gilbert | January 6, 2014

We have a lot of clichés in our professional lives. But they are all really different ways of saying that we are going to think about things in a fresh manner and seek to increase the performance of what we are doing. So aside from all the worn out phrases, how do we do this within the field of parks and recreation?

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The Bench With the View: A Business Lesson for Parks and Recreation

August 9, 2013

What’s a park bench have to do with business models for parks and recreation? In this blog Jeff Price, Business Manager for the City of Everett Parks and Recreation Department in Washington tells how pricing differentiation on memorial benches was a win/win business decision for the agency and how this can be just one of many business models that work for parks and recreation.

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Think You Can't Make Significant Money on Black Friday? Think Again: A Speed Session Preview

July 8, 2013

We are back with your next Speed Session preview for the 2013 NRPA Congress and Exposition.  Who doesn’t love shopping on Black Friday?  Think that “holiday” is just for retail?  Think again. In this blog post, written by Jenise Jensen, Administrative Manager – Recreation, in the Town of Breckenridge, CO she shares a secret - Black Friday can be for park and recreation agencies and can bring your agency big bucks without breaking your budget! Get the scoop in this blog and for the full story, make sure you attend Congress and her Speed Session on Oct. 9. 

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From Gravel Lot to Garden of Possibilities

June 17, 2013

Community gardens can be powerful things. They can bring communities together, provide fresh and healthy produce to those that may have no access to fresh fruits and vegetables, they can connect generations and pass on traditions and so much more. Often run by local parks and recreation, community gardens have the power to improve communities. Recently, we visited Rosemont Park District in Illinois and saw first hand how the Grow Your Park grant from NRPA and the Darden Foundation is changing not only the landscape of this small town, but is also bringing generations and the community closer. 


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The Long Strange Disappointing Transportation Trip

June 28, 2012

After almost three years and nine extensions, the House and Senate have finally struck a deal that will likely result in Congress passing a bill by this Saturday – the day the bill is set to expire. Unfortunately, many of the carefully crafted bi-partisan reforms and compromises included in the Senate passed bill (S. 1318 or MAP-21) have been removed.  Read what this deal means for parks and recreation.

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A Different Kind of Picnic In the Park

June 25, 2012

Nearly 20 million children receive free or reduced-priced lunches at school each year. However, during the summer months fewer than 3 million children partake in free summer lunch. This is a gap of more than 16 million kids who can receive a free healthy lunch each day school is out, but don’t. Why is this? Read this moving blog by NRPA's Jimmy O'Connor on how park and recreation agencies are serving to fill this gap this summer, helping improve lives and communities.

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Are Earmarks Truly Dead

June 4, 2012

Park and recreation agencies, like many other local government agencies, have benefitted from federal earmarks.   But the federal earmark ban that took effect two years ago has made it difficult local governments to fund  many local projects, such as park and recreation projects.   Discussions on the Hill, now have many wondering whether earmarks are truly dead. Read the latest from NRPA's Public Policy team to learn more about this issue.

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Parks and Re-Creation--An Interview with Dan Biederman

April 24, 2012

Daniel A. Biederman, president of Biederman Redevelopment Ventures, is well known for his work as a transformer of urban parks. While he is most famous for revitalizing Manhattan’s Bryant Park in the 1990s (primarily through corporate sponsorships), he has also

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Show Me the Money

March 15, 2012
NRPA Board Chair, Robert C. Johnson, discusses economic models, one of the three main areas of focus for NRPA in 2012.  In his post he welcomes your feedback on what's working in the field. Read more

Financing the Future of Urban Parks and Recreation – 8 questions to ponder

March 6, 2012
NRPA and the Urban Institute released a new report, “Financing the Future: The Critical Role of Parks in Urban and Metropolitan Infrastructure.” The report, written by noted author, urban planner, and former mayor of Ventura, California, William Fulton, analyzes discussion from a roundtable held in Washington, DC in the fall of 2011 with national experts including park directors, mayors, and urban planners. Read more

Walking and Bicycling Trails – The Crossroads of Federal Transportation Policy and Local Recreation Infrastructure

March 1, 2012

Editor’s Note: NRPA recently asked Mr. Christopher B. Douwes, Trails and Enhancements Manager with the Federal Highway Administration to provide some factual background and insight on the Transportation Enhancements (TE) and Recreational Trails Program (RTP) initiatives and the role they play in promoting active transportation.  

As Congress considers its priorities for 2012; one piece of pressing business is the reauthorization of the Surface Transportation Act. The current law, known as SAFETEA-LU is set to expire March 31, and the House and Senate have announced plans to debate and vote on their respective reauthorization packages in the coming days and weeks.  

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Connecting the Links

November 30, 2011

By now you have seen several posts in this blog talking about the process that goes into funding park and recreation programs. Very likely not everyone knows all that goes into the proverbial sausage-making, with some Members of Congress having more influence than others, all the behind the scenes squabbling, and the obvious disorganization trying to create something that actually looks organized when it’s finished. Actually, you might not want to know the details. If laws really are like sausages, maybe it is better not to see them being made. In any case, here’s a quick lesson on this often not-so-appetizing process.


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Down But Not Out

November 9, 2011
The full Senate Environmental and Public Works (EPW) Committee unanimously approved its bipartisan two-year highway reauthorization bill (S. 1813) today by an 18-0 vote. The bill, known as Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (or MAP 21), as drafted will dramatically reduce the available funding for Transportation Enhancements (TE), the Rails to Trails Program (RTP) and Safe Routes to Schools (SR2S) by consolidating them into the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) fund. Read more

The End of Thinking Outside the Box

October 7, 2011
At the special roundtable, “Financing the Future” hosted by NRPA and the Urban Institute on September 27th in Washington, D.C., one comment in particular came through loud and clear: There are no more boxes to think outside of anymore. How true. In a full day of frank and passionate exchanges among not only parks professionals and advocates, but also mayors of U.S. cities, speaker after speaker offered ideas, insight, and counsel for what ails the financing of parks and recreation in America. Not everyone agreed with each other, and that was good. Much common ground was identified, which more than ever is crucial for moving forward. Read more

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