See you in New Orleans!
See You in New Orleans!
T-minus four days until we begin our annual gathering, this time in one of America's truly great cities  New Orleans.  From food, architecture, music to hospitality, the Big Easy is easily one of my favorite places, and I hope to see many, if not all, of you there. While you're there, I encourage you to take advantage of the myriad of culinary offerings the city is known for. I've recently had some stellar bites at Parkway Tavern, St. Roche's Market, Cochon, Peche, Cavan and Compere Lapin. After dinner, get a beverage to-go and walk off your meal with a stop at the historic Louis Armstrong Park and Congo Square on your way to the Lafitte Greenway, or stroll through the grand dames of public space in NOLA City and Audubon Parks. And, don't forget the new kid on the block, the stunning Crescent Park along the Mississippi.
Of course, the real reason we'll be together is to celebrate the impact parks and recreation have on people's lives and to learn from each other on how innovators inside and outside our field are continuing to deepen our impact. To help curate some of the sessions that may be of interest to you, I've created a list of highlights below.

Laissez les bon temps rouler!
Kevin O'Hara
Vice President of Urban and Government Affairs
2017 NRPA Annual Conference

Urban Directors Meeting

Tuesday, September 26 | 4:15 p.m. - 5:15 p.m. | The Russel Marchand Center


Director's Corner Education Sessions

New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, Rivergate Room
The Directors' Corner education sessions are intended to attract directors and upper-level professionals who want to discuss cutting-edge issues and topics with their peers and learn how others are dealing with similar challenges they are facing.
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
1:00 p.m. 2:15 p.m. 
2:35 p.m. 3:50 p.m.
Wednesday, September 27, 2017
9:15 a.m. 10:30 a.m.
Thursday, September 28, 2017

Designing for Resilience 
1:30 p.m. 2:45 p.m.


These thought-provoking keynote speakers will leave you inspired and driven to continue to make your communities great places to live.


matt-iseman-200.gifNRPA Opening General Session featuring Matt Iseman
Tuesday, September 26 | 9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. | Great Hall

To say Dr. Matt is a jack of many trades is a slight understatement. He's the host of American Ninja Warrior, the new Celebrity Apprentice, a physician, comedian, actor and former Princeton baseball pitcher. To add to that list, he is also this year's NRPA Annual Conference keynote speaker. Join us for Dr. Matt's inspiring keynote presentation that is guaranteed to remind you of the important role parks and recreation plays in shaping the lives of all people, of all ethnicities, ages and abilities.


pettitt-200.gifConversations That Matter: Because Everyone Deserves a Park
Wednesday, September 27 | 8:00 a.m. 8:45 a.m. | Great Hall | Keynote Speaker: Jessica Pettitt

Humor is a great equalizer and is often the quickest way to diffuse conflict and move toward real connection. With a background in stand up comedy, Jessica Pettitt, frames even difficult subjects in an engaging and welcoming way. You will be inspired to stand up and take action as Jessica Pettitt leads you down the path to understanding you are good enough to make the changes you seek. Challenging long held assumptions about the type of people who drive change and are successful, Jessica eradicates excuses and provides strategies to communicate openly and actively seek success.


Add These Sessions to Your Itinerary

Drones in Parks: Part 1. Policy, Drone Zones and Resources for Land Managers

A topic as complex as drones in parks couldn't be covered in just one episode, so we we're launching a three-part series on Open Space Radio to tackle this topic by interviewing experts in the field with three different perspectives.

Part 1: Policy, Drone Zones and Resources for Land Managers
Part 2: Ways Park Managers Are Handling Drones
Part 3: Opportunities and the Future of Drones in Parks


In part one, Open Space Radio host Roxanne Sutton chats with Chad Budreau, Public Relations and Government Affairs Director for the Academy of Model Aeronautics.

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