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2020 Legislative Priorities

WRPA Announces 2020 Legislative Priorities! 

WRPA is excited to announce the 2020 Legislative priorities. Some of the initiatives include:

  • Strongly Support $50,000 Allocation to Update Outdoor Recreation Sector Economic Analysis
  • Protect Funding for Dedicated Accounts within the Capital Budget
  • Efforts to Address Mental Health, Homelessness, Affordable Housing
  • And much more!
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WRPA Award Nominations Are Now Open

Learn more about the awards program and congratulate past winners!

      

WRPA wants to honor Washington's exceptional people, parks, and programs. We know that you work hard as a park and recreation professional to enhance the lives of the people in your community. We want to celebrate that hard work!

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. 

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Congratulations City of Shoreline

 

Shoreline Earns CAPRA Accreditation

The City of Shoreline is celebrating becoming just the third city in Washington State to earn national accreditation through the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) and the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA). This esteemed accomplishment places Shoreline in the good company of Tacoma and Bellevue as they join the top 1% of Parks and Recreation agencies across the country.

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Congratulations Metro Parks Tacoma

Metro Parks Tacoma has won the prestigious 2019 National Gold Medal Award for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management, the top achievement in the industry.

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Pierce Outdoor LIFE Program

Agency Member Feature: Pierce County Parks & Recreation

Juvenile Court + Parks & Recreation + Cooperative Extension + Community Partners = No Child Left Inside

The Pierce Outdoor LIFE (Leadership Instruction & Field Experiences) Program is an outdoor adventure intervention offered as a "positive probation" alternative for court-associated youth age 13-17. The program is coordinated by Pierce County Parks & Recreation, Pierce County Juvenile Court, and the Washington State University Cooperative Extension and Community Partners. At-risk youth often struggle with school attendance, unhealthy relationships, crime, and violence due to poor social skills, lack of understanding of their learning style, interpersonal conflict, and unresolved personal issues. This program provides positive risk-taking opportunities for teens, replacing negative risk-taking behaviors and building a healthy connection between the youth, nature and their community.  

 

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2019 WRPA Award Recipients

Congratulations, Award Recipients!

This spring, we want to honor the amazing people, parks, and programs that received an award at the awards banquet during the 72nd Annual WRPA Conference & Tradeshow. The WRPA Awards Program honors individuals and organizations for their contributions to the field of recreation and parks in Washington State. A variety of awards were handed out to WRPA members and public citizens. 

There are three categories recognized for WRPA's Awards Program: Professional Awards, Citation of Merit Awards, and Spotlight Awards. In addition to these categories, WRPA also acknowledges Mickey Corso Leadership Grant recipients.  

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City of Lacey Loses Longtime Parks Advocate and Leader

Lacey, WA, April 26, 2019

The City of Lacey is saddened by the recent passing of Jim Sheler, who served as the city’s first Parks and Recreation Director from 1974 until retirement in 2009.  “Jim established an incredible legacy for our community and indeed the greater South Sound,” said Lacey Mayor Andy Ryder. “He was an untiring force in laying the foundation for one of the finest municipal park systems in the region.”
 
When Sheler arrived at Lacey, the fledgling city had been incorporated for only eight years.  Its newly-created parks department had no permanent employees, no dedicated budget, and only three parks—Wonderwood, Lake Lois, and Homann—comprising a total of 54 acres. 
 
Over the next 35 years, Sheler oversaw expansion of the city’s park system to 26 locations encompassing more than 500 acres—including Rainier Vista Community Park, Woodland Creek Community Park, Huntamer Park, the Regional Athletic Complex, and Lacey’s community and senior centers.  Sheler also initiated the city’s highly-regarded comprehensive recreation program, which serves more than twenty thousand participating residents and visitors annually.  By the time of his retirement, Lacey’s parks department employed thirteen people, and had an annual budget of $3.2 million.
 
In 2010, the Washington Recreation and Parks Association (WRPA) honored Sheler with its Distinguished Service Award, which recognizes outstanding commitment and contributions to the field of parks and recreation.
“Jim was truly passionate about Lacey and building a park’s system that would benefit and be enjoyed by all ages,” said City Manager Scott Spence.  “He was the personification of outstanding public service, and one of the most dedicated professionals I’ve had the pleasure of working with.”  

A public Celebration of Life will be held on Friday, May 3, at 1:00 p.m. at Mills & Mills Funeral Home, 5725 Littlerock Road SW, Tumwater, WA 98512.  Contributions to the “Lacey Parks & Recreation Jim Sheler Memorial Fund” can be made in-person or via postal mail to Lacey Parks & Recreation, 420 College Street SE, Lacey, WA 98503.