What Your Congress Feedback Says About You

By Matt Brubaker | Posted on November 10, 2014

We asked and you answered! More than 1,000 attendees completed the post-conference survey and shared what they thought about their experience at the 2014 NRPA Congress in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The survey is your chance to tell us what we did right and where we can improve so that we can continue to make the NRPA conference a valuable experience for all in the park and recreation field. We asked some interesting questions so I’m sure many of you are interested to see how others answered the questions and how the results breakdown.  

So, here are some of the highlights.  

Record breaking attendance

More than 7,200 people filled the Charlotte Convention Center from October 14 – 16. That makes this year’s conference the highest attended in the last six years. 

Who are you and what do you do?

Attendee’s professional level breaks down as 45 percent at the Executive Management level, 43 percent are Middle Management and 12 percent are Staff level. Of all these, only 9 percent do not play a role in the purchasing process for their agency. People from all over the globe were in attendance, with all 50 US states represented, plus Germany, France, India, China, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Japan, Australia, United Kingdom, Canada, Turkey and more!

Are you getting enough bang for your buck?

Based on financial and time commitments, 41 percent of attendees believe that what they got out of the conference was on par with what they paid and 54 percent believe the value of their experience exceeded what they paid. Eighty-eight percent of attendees were satisfied with their overall experience.

“This was my first NRPA Congress. It was wonderful - great sessions, exhibit hall. I learned so much and am excited to go back to work to share everything.”

What great ideas are you taking home?

"If you don't like change, you'll like irrelevance even less."

“Diversity is our strength, not our weakness.”

“How to involve home school organizations into daily programming.”

“Implementing a Walk with the Doc Program for my active adult community”

Will we be seeing your smiling face in 2015?

Most people are still undecided. Of those surveyed, 41 percent are unsure if they will attend the 2015 Conference. However, 36 percent are already planning to attend. Here are some comments:

“Yes. Close proximity to our City, and hope to be a Gold Medal finalist again.”

“Maybe. Depends if I get chosen to attend by my employer or able to volunteer again.”

“Maybe. Depends on supervisor's approval and financial support.”

“Maybe. Don't like the idea of it being in Vegas. Perception will be we are just going there to party.”

“Yes. I always try to attend, as I find the Congress very useful.”

Here is a visual summary of some of the other statistics that stood out:




We would like to thank everyone who came to Charlotte for the conference and everyone who completed the survey. Your feedback is essential for the planning of future events like the 2015 NRPA Congress in Las Vegas, Nevada. We can’t wait to see you there!

Oh, and if you are curious the winner of the iPad drawing is Chuck Burgess, Recreation Manager of Buffalo Grove Park District in Illinois. Congrats Chuck!


Are you surprised by any of the results of the post-event survey? Share in the comments below or tweet us @NRPA_News


Matt Brubaker is the Marketing Manager for NRPA.