Becoming a Park Champion

By Jayni Rasmussen | Posted on February 14, 2017

Tags: Advocacy

With the 115th Congress underway, it’s time to meet the legislators leading the Congressional committees handling the legislation that is most important to parks and recreation. When it comes to advocating for the future of our field, it’s key that we connect with these members to ensure they continue to value the importance of parks and recreation. Every member of Congress has a say in the federal policies that affect your agency and community, but the members on these key Congressional leadership and committees are especially focused on the issues on our platform.  

You can help us make an impact by bringing these members of Congress to see your parks and programs first-hand! Become a Park Champion by inviting your members of Congress to an event already on your calendar.  While any event that highlights your great work is a perfect opportunity for a Park Champion event, here are some strategic event topics if your member of Congress sits on a priority Congressional committee

House Committee

Senate Committee

NRPA Policy Platform Issue


House Natural Resources Committee

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee

Land and Water Conservation Fund  (State Assistance Fund)

Host an event in a park that was made possible thanks to LWCF.

House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee

Senate Environment and Public Works Committee

Active Transportation Options

Host an event that highlights your parks and recreational trails, such as your Safe Routes to Parks projects. 

House Committee on Education and the Workforce

Senate Agriculture Committee

Child Nutrition Reauthorization

Do you participate in the USDA summer meals and after-school meal and snack program (SFSP and CACFP)? Invite your member of Congress to visit your program and help serve a meal or snack.

House Energy and Commerce Committee

Senate Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions (HELP) Committee and Senate Finance Committee

CDC Funding, Prevention and Public Health Fund

You’re helping to keep your community healthy, so show your members of Congress your health and wellness programming and recreation centers.

House Appropriations Committee

Senate Appropriations Committee

All issues

Any event! The appropriations committees help determine how the policies on our platform our funded.


Even if your member of Congress doesn’t sit on a priority committee or you don’t currently benefit from the federal policies on our platform, I still encourage you to invite your members of Congress to a Park Champion event. It’s easy to get started!

Step #1: Sign the Park Champion pledge.

Step #2: Check out the Park Champion Advocacy Toolkit and get a step-by-step walk through to help you invite your members of Congress to an event.

Step #3: Watch the archived Park Champion webinar recording and hear from a Park Champion about their experience inviting members of Congress to their parks.


Jayni Rasmussen is NRPA's Advocacy and Outreach Specialist.