Catch up on the latest news and happenings around the state.



In this Issue...

Photo of the Month — Share Your Photos Too!

Singleton Community Playground 2021

Over the course of the past 2 years, Manson Parks constructed the first inclusive playground in the Lake Chelan Valley! Donations and volunteer support poured in for this project, and this past summer we were finally able to open up the new Singleton Community Playground here in Manson, WA.

We received project funding from the Tom and Meg Names Family Foundation ($100,000), Lake Chelan Rotary ($10,000), Community Foundation of North Central Washington ($8,465), Chelan-Douglas Developmental Disabilities Program ($8,223), and MANY more!

The entire construction process relied on volunteers, from tear-down of the old outdated equipment, to design, pouring the new sidewalk border, installation of the new equipment, and spreading the Engineered Wood Fiber. Lake Chelan Rotary provided most of the volunteers, and we truly could have not accomplished this monumental task without their help. It was a labor of love, and it has already served thousands of families from the Lake Chelan Valley and beyond!

Want to share a special image with WRPA members and supporters. Submit your own photo of the month by emailing us at [email protected].

Submit Now Button

Return to Top

How Do You Recreate?

Red Top Rockhounding

Thank you to Robin Pittman, director of Manson Park and Recreation District, for this month's photo.

"My family discovered rock hounding over the past summer. I have to say, I never thought I’d be someone with a passion for rocks, but my 6 and 9-year-old kids opened my eyes to a whole new kind of recreation. Road-tripping, hiking, spending time with the family (4-legged family members too!), exploring, getting outdoors, picnicking, orienteering,  teamwork, camping, and treasure-hunting, rockhounding is all of this and more! Aside from the price of gas, it’s very inexpensive too! The attached photo was taken at the agate beds on Red Top Mountain near Blewett Pass."

Want to let others know how you are staying happy, healthy, or fit? Submit “How Do You Recreate” photos to [email protected].

Submit Now Button

Return to Top

#WRPA2022: Registration Is Now Open
Join Us at Next Year's In-Person Conference: Apil 13–15, 2022

WRPA 2022 Conference Logo

Early bird registration for the 75th Annual Conference & Tradeshow is now open! 

This year will be our first in-person meeting in more than two years and we can't wait to come together and celebrate our profession. We invite you to join in the fun, network with your peers and learn new skills.

We look forward to welcoming you back!

Return to Top

Parks & Great Outdoors Legislative Day – January 20, 2022
Highlight from the WRPA Legislative Committee

Special thanks to WRPA's Legislative Committee for helping to prepare another amazing Legislative Day.

Join the Washington Wildlife & Recreation Coalition and the Washington Recreation & Park Association at our annual Parks and Great Outdoors Legislative Day!

Help us advocate for our state's premier outdoors fund, the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP), and tell your legislators why Washington's parks, wildlife habitat areas, and working lands deserve to be funded.

Never met with a legislator before? Don't worry; we will make sure you have everything you need, including pre-event training. And we'll even schedule your meetings for you!

This event will be held virtually. Questions? Email [email protected].

Also, be sure to sign up for our two Pre-Legislative Day Trainings:

Return to Top

Viki DowneyThis is a selfie Viki provided after one of her winter swims. She swims in Lake Chelan EVERY day, rain or shine or snow or hail. 

Spotlight Professional: Viki Downey
Aquatic Supervisor, Manson Parks & Recreation District

Viki Downey is the Aquatic Supervisor and the local valley’s quintessential superhero! She has spent her working years in water safety and has been with Manson Parks for more than 24 years. Among many other accomplishments, she created a lifeguard training program and free swimming lesson program here in Manson. She has saved countless lives, both directly and indirectly, and inspires nearly everyone she meets.

Viki has this piece of advice for fellow parks and recreation professionals, "Work Hard. Be kind. Include all."

Read more about Viki in the full spotlight.

Return to Top

Submit a Nomination for a WRPA Award Today
Recognize Your Team for All of Their Hard Work

Each year, WRPA looks forward to honoring Washington's exceptional people, parks, and programs. The WRPA Awards Program honors individuals and organizations for their contributions to the field of recreation and parks.

We have a variety of awards to help you gain recognition and this year we have made the nominations process much easier.


The deadline for submissions is January 31, 2022!

Return to Top

Looking to Become a Strong Park & Recreation Leader?
Learn About the Mickey Corso Professional Leadership Grant

Mickey Corso (1942–1990), a WRPA past president, was the epitome of excellence in recreation and park leadership as well as in life. As a tribute to Mickey and to the professional leadership he provided in the industry, his family, friends, and co-workers established the Mickey Corso Professional Leadership Grant.

Each year, this grant is awarded to a small group of deserving professionals. The grant can be used for post-graduate trainings such as NRPA schools, graduate courses, or other opportunities relating to recreation and park leadership. Learn more and apply today.

If you would like to contribute to the Mickey Corso Leadership Grant and make a difference for recreation and park students and professionals, you can donate online today.

Return to Top

Call for Local Success Stories
WRPA wants to share your 2020 successes!

WRPA is bringing back the Success Story Program.

2021 has not quite been the year we were hoping for. However, WRPA is proud to see so many professionals from our industry are who still hard at work making this pandemic a little easier for our communities.

If you or your agency have a particular story you would like to share on the WRPA Blog please send it to our Communication Committee Chair, Carl Strong at [email protected] to be considered for publication in the WRPAToday Bi-Monthly Newsletter.

View all of the past Success Stories on the Blog.

Return to Top

Calling All WRPA Members: Submit a Board Nomination
Due February 1, 2021



We are excited to announce that the 2021 Call for Nominations is now open.

The following Board positions are up for election:

  • Vice President
  • King County Regional Director
  • Easter WA Regional Director

As a WRPA member, you are invited to take part. Learn a little more about WRPA's election process by reviewing the WRPA Bylaws then submit a nomination for yourself or for a colleague!

A More Inclusive Future: WRPA is committed to building a diverse and welcoming organization that centers on equity and inclusion. Our Board of Directors is working to challenge and undo any racism, hetero/cis-normativity, ableism, sexism, xenophobia, ageism, classism/elitism, and other forms of oppression that may exist within our institutional policies or practices. We strongly encourage nominations for people with the lived experience to help us achieve our goals.

Return to Top

Has Your Agency Been Considering a Seasonal Ice Rink?
City of Olympia Member Highlight

WRPA Communication Committee member Sylvana Niehuser recently had an interview with Scott River, the director of recreation and facilities at the City of Olympia, to learn more about what it took for their agency to get their annual ice rink. 

Oly on Ice has been operating since 2018 and has received one of WRPA's spotlight awards for Innovative Outreach. Read more about the process and some of the things your agency should consider before opening your own seasonal rink.

Return to Top

NRPA Parks & Recreation Magazine Highlight
"Pandemic Empowered: Creative Solutions in a COVID-19 World"
November 18, 2021, Department, by Sarah Krug and Michael A. Mulvaney

In March 2020, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and subsequent stay-at-home orders brought the world to a surreal halt. Businesses shut down, transportation was immobilized, and people across the globe sheltered in place. More than a year later, the world is still grappling with the effects of COVID-19, and the park and recreation profession is no different. In fact, during the pandemic, participation in many outdoor recreation-based pursuits has been at an all-time high for many communities. This increased demand — coupled with ever-evolving safety guidelines, protocols, staff, and budgetary constraints — has created additional challenges for many agencies.

Read the full NRPA article to learn more.

Return to Top

WRPA Blog Highlights
Read the Latest Industry News

Washington Community Forestry Council (WCFC) Recruitment

Take Our Survey: RCO Acquisition-Development Funds

New! Discover Pass Free Days 2022

Call for 2021 Success Stories

RCO Needs Your Feedback About Recreation

Call to Action: Help The Washington Invasive Species Council

Return to Top

Thank You to Our Renewing Members!
Information Pulled December 16, 2021

Agency Members:
  • City of Bonney Lake
  • City of Quincy
  • Colfax Parks & Recreation
  • Puyallup Parks & Recreation
  • Tumwater Parks & Recreation
Other Member Types:
  • Patrick Burke, South Kitsap School
  • Brad Case, Ellensburg Parks & Recreation
  • Corey Delikat, Port Angeles Parks & Recreation
  • Kyle Ehlers, City of Des Moines
  • Ray Finn, The Evergreen State College
  • Suzette Hart, Pushing Boundaries
  • Jodi Hoctor, Ellensburg Parks & Recreation
  • Jayna Lafferty, Lake Stevens School District
  • Dale Schneewind, South Kitsap School District

Return to Top

Recent Job Postings


See what new opportunities await you in the field of recreation and parks by checking out WRPA's Job Board!

Visit the WRPA Job Board Today!

Return to Top

WRPA 2022 Event Calendar
Date Event Location
January 6 Pre-Legislative Day Training: What Can Park Sales Tax Do For You? Online
January 10 Leg 101 - Easy, Safe, and Sane Legislative Engagement for Parks Professionals
January 20 2022 Parks & Great Outdoors Legislative Day Online
March 9
Certified Playground Safety Inspector - 2022 Spring Course & Exam
April 13–15 WRPA Annual Conference 2022 Bellevue, WA

Return to Top

Volunteer Opportunities

Thank You, 2021 Sponsors!

WRPA is membership-driven. We achieve only what we ourselves commit to doing. By sharing your energy and expertise, you will make WRPA an even more effective professional resource.

In fact, without you, we would not be able to offer any programs! Consider volunteering and helping our organization grow. Learn more about opportunities that have recently become available!

Join a WRPA Network

WRPA has several dedicated groups or "Networks" that meet on a regular basis and communicate online. These networks provide WRPA members with the opportunity to make personal, ongoing connections with other professionals. By joining a network and using the online platform, you too can increase your passion for the work you do every day.




Return to Top

Washington Recreation and Park Association

[email protected] | Tel: (206) 361-8869 |

View This Email In Your Browser

View The WRPAToday Newsletter Archives