New Survey: Parks and Recreation Hosts Favorite Spring and Summer Outdoor Activities

(May 3, 2021)

Park and recreation pros are ensuring the health, safety and well-being of their communities

As communities everywhere gear up for warmer weather, all the while following important state and local coronavirus (COVID-19) guidelines, 6 in 7 U.S. adults say they plan to participate in a variety of outdoor activities typically hosted by their local parks and recreation this spring and summer, according to a newly released National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) poll. The top park and recreation-sponsored outdoor activities based upon age group include:

  • Baby Boomers: Attending picnics and barbecues
  • Gen X: Going to the park
  • Millennials: Visiting a beach or lake
  • Gen Z: Swimming

Other popular outdoor activities include using local trails for:  

  • Hiking
  • Biking
  • Walking

“People are very eager to spend time outdoors, especially given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic,” said Kevin Roth, NRPA vice president of research, evaluation and technology. “While everyone must be mindful of the COVID-19 guidelines as they relate to physical distancing, large events and gatherings, people of all ages should feel safe when visiting a local park or open space where public health and safety are a top priority.”

Park and recreation professionals nationwide are committed to ensuring the health, safety and well-being of the communities they serve. This includes keeping local parks, open spaces and other critical infrastructure safe and accessible during the COVID-19 pandemic. To help guide and assist park and recreation professionals with this important work, NRPA hosts a variety of COVID-19 resources on its website that includes information on using parks safely and more. To learn more about parks and recreation’s response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, click here.

To view the interactive charts with the survey results, click here.

To view the full-size infographic, click here.

To learn more about NRPA, visit


About the National Recreation and Park Association
The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) is the leading not-for-profit organization dedicated to building strong, vibrant and resilient communities through the power of parks and recreation. With more than 60,000 members, NRPA advances this mission by investing in and championing the work of park and recreation professionals and advocates — the catalysts for positive change in service of equity, climate-readiness, and overall health and well-being. For more information, visit For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit