NRPA in Action >> PRORAGIS Update
Water—The Lifeblood of Parks and Recreation
In whatever form, be it ocean, lake, river, pond, pool,
water park, splash pad, or spray ground, water is a common resource that draws
users to our parks and enhances our recreation. In the first week of July with
temperatures in the 100s throughout the eastern U.S., any form of water was a
relief. Since the Renaissance began in Europe in the 14th century
and even in the earliest Chinese dynasties, both private gardens and public
parks with clean, fresh water were prized places.
It is no different today. Public parks are often provided
water features if they are not a natural part of the park setting. In the early
1900s, many public parks had beach access to rivers, lakes, streams, and oceans.
By the late 1940s to the mid 1970s, outdoor pools were built by the thousands.
Initially, they were a function of housing developments and homeowners’
associations and later of public parks.
The late 1970s saw the beginning of the indoor swimming pool boom, which
continues today, coupled with fitness and other programs and class activities.
Water parks became the facility of choice in many locations by the mid 1980s,
and the 1990s began the development of splash pads and spray grounds, which
were less expensive to build and operate. The above table shows the current
percentage indicating the incidence of various water facilities and resources.
These are aggregate percentages of responses from profiles
created in each of the operating years indicated. Thus the three numbers for
indoor swimming pools indicate that approximately one third of the departments that
responded operate indoor pools. This may not be a high statistical confidence
level, but it is probably a good indicator of the incidence of indoor pools
operated by agencies.
Note that outdoor pools and lake/river access are both above
the 50-percent level, and the incidence of spray grounds and splash pads is
above 40 percent.
More on Aquatic Program Providers!
Did you know NRPA partners with top
leading aquatic safety program providers?
As park and recreation agencies
across the country examine ways to stay competitive and find efficiencies, NRPA
member discount programs are a solution to help agencies operate
effectively. We wanted to ensure that NRPA agencies had more choices and
more flexibility, while still delivering access to state-of-the-art training
courses and cutting-edge resources and tools.
NRPA has partnered with the
American Red Cross, Ellis & Associates, and Starfish Aquatics
Institute. Each has designed savings on their lifeguard training and
swimming instruction programs exclusively for NRPA members. Our
partnerships give members more opportunities to save on their total training
costs. We encourage you to compare the significant savings on these
NRPA is committed to collaborating
in future partnerships to help provide members with a wide range of value-added
offers and special savings. NRPA evaluates all discount opportunities to
ensure that members get the maximum benefit.
For more information about the
Aquatics Discount Programs, please visit www.nrpa.org/Membership/Endorsed-Business-Provider/Aquatic-Program-Discounts.