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Register for the 2015 WRPA Annual Conference & Trade Show
"Transforming Lives Transforming Communities"
April 29-May 1 in Tacoma, Washington
Happy New Year! Remember to register by Friday, Jan. 9 to book with the super early bird rate. What do you get when you register? Three days of transformative educational sessions, empowering keynote speakers and innovative experiences in a city that is experiencing its own transformation. Enjoy this unique event blending stories of community change, recreation, and public mission into an integrated educational experience. Session details will be posted soon!
Check out the tracks:
Business & Administration
Foot Golf Tournament and 18 Hole Golf Tournament
Key Note Speakers
"Leaving a Legacy" Mike Smith
"Leadership Cookbook — Building Diverse Relationships One Pot at a Time” Kostas Voutsas
Learn more and register.
WRPA Annual Award Nominations — Coming Soon!
The Washington Recreation and Park Association celebrates people, parks and programs with an annual award program honoring individuals and organizations for their contributions to the field of parks and recreation. We will begin accepting award nominations in early February. Details on the nomination process along with nomination deadlines will be announced at the end of January. In the meantime, general information on the awards program is available on the WRPA website. Please be aware that email communication with Council Members or City staff is a public record and is subject to disclosure upon request.
Professional Development Program — 'Standing the Heat' with Jamie Sabbach
Register before Jan. 9 to receive the early bird rate!
"Standing the Heat" will examine a range of contemporary adaptive leadership concepts and questions whether we are prepared to challenge conventional thinking. Join us on Feb. 5 as Jamie Sabbach speaks on enabling agencies to position themselves for long term health and effectiveness.
Learn more and register.
Certified Playground Safety Inspector Spring Program — Registration is open!
WRPA is dedicated to promoting children's right to play in a safe and challenging play environment. Join us in the challenge to have at least one person from every community across Washington become a Certified Playground Safety Inspector. The CPSI program offers the most comprehensive and up-to-date training about playground safety.
Our spring program will take place March 3-5 at the Hilton Garden Inn in Bothell.
Learn more and register.
WRPA Member Highlights/Happenings
New Positions Added to the WRPA Job Board
The following job opportunities recently became available:
View the WRPA Career Center to see more.
- Assistant Park Ranger, City of Bellevue
- Recreation Program Coordinator, City of Unalaska
- Assistant Recreation Specialist, City of Mercer Island
- Aquatics Coordinator, Multnomah Athletic Club, Portland, Oregon
The Fresh Face of HERC
The committee of WRPA formerly known as Higher Education and Relations Committee has received a new name: Student Connections Committee or the SCC.
Not only is the name new, but the way the committee is looking to bridge the gap between students involved in recreation and recreation professionals is getting a facelift as well.
The goal of this committee is to be a strong resource, support network and liaison between Eastern, WSU, Western and Central Washington universities' Recreation, Tourism and Sports Management students and WRPA. The committee works to help make students aware of WRPA, the benefits our association has for them and provides information about how they can continue on as professionals in our amazing field. The committee plans to be actively connected to the university students and professors to get a pulse on what will most benefit them.
Beginning at the Annual Conference, you will notice that the student offerings will have a new twist based on feedback the committee has already received from college professors. This will include beginning with a slate of three highlighted sessions specific for Recreation Students or Young/New professionals to the field on Thursday.
Starting with a revamped Student Summit (to be renamed) welcoming students, giving them some conference 101 and skills on how to successfully network with the professionals throughout the conference (so please be open and willing to interact with the students throughout the week; they might need to get a photo with you or get your business card).
An Outdoor Recreation/Tourism panel session speaking to those students who are interested in other avenues of the profession outside the municipal arena.
The new and improved Professional Networking Session (formerly Speed Networking and Mock interviews) where students will get advice from professionals on what they look for when they hire staff for full-/part-time and seasonal positions. This is also an opportunity for professionals who are looking to connect with students who are enthusiastically still looking for summer employment.
We will update you as these exciting changes continue to develop. Please contact Kevin Witte or Sarah Sandquist if you have interest in being a part of any of these listed sessions. And if you have not already, like the SCC Facebook page to see what we are up to!
The NRPA's Ethnic Minority Society Comes to Washington State
WRPA is excited to announce our affiliation with the Ethnic Minority Society as a state member! The EMS mission is to "unite the communities of ethnic minorities in the field of parks and recreation." Our membership will afford individuals with technical information, advocacy and professional networking opportunities, but more importantly, access to the Mentor Program where new and young professionals are paired with middle and senior managers and retired professionals.
Last year, NRPA's EMS completed two Community Service Projects in Houston and Charlotte, awarded one scholarship to an undergraduate majoring in Parks & Recreation, brought back the "Grapevine" newsletter and added a website. EMS has become more inclusive and diverse in its membership and is looking for new members and state affiliates to further diversify their efforts.
If you're interested in becoming a member of the state affiliate or would like more information, please contact Kelly Guy, Seattle Parks Recreation Division Director, at Kelly.firstname.lastname@example.org or at (206) 684-7157. As the state affiliate EMS lead, Kelly will be working on a meet & greet, informational session for the upcoming WRPA April conference.
Liability concerns prompt some municipalities to ban, limit sledding
As anyone who has grown up around snow knows, part of the fun of sledding is the risk of soaring off a jump or careening around a tree. But faced with the potential bill from sledding injuries, some cities have opted to close hills rather than risk large liability claims.
Rule change will ease sailing on the beach
Kite buggies, blo-karts, kite boards: these wind-powered vehicles, or land sailers, could be coming to state park lands in Pacific and Grays Harbor counties. The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission is considering changing a rule that currently prohibits the use of these vehicles on beaches the agency manages. Now, the commission is looking at allowing them but likely only under certain conditions, including seasonal and area-by-area based restrictions.
Apps help parents organize youth sports
The Boston Globe
As the holidays end and parents get back into the routine of shuttling kids from school to winter-sports practice, they're getting help from mobile applications that are ushering local sports leagues into the digital age. To gain an edge over competing clubs, the Colorado Premier Basketball Club in Littleton, Colorado, adopted an app called TeamSnap, which users can check into on their smartphones to mark player availability, look up game locations and who's bringing snacks.
WRPA Event and Education Calendar
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