Parks and Recreation agencies provide vital support for creating and sustaining active communities across the United States. In New York City, Parks Department properties promote physical activity, community engagement, and cultural awareness. Over 5,000 Parks sites cover 14% of New York City, and range from athletic fields and playgrounds, to nature centers and beaches, to public monuments and historic museums. The department also hosts a variety of fun, free events for residents of all ages. Additionally, they serve as an invaluable member of the PARCS Study, as their teamwork and insight allow us to engage with community residents across the city and improve public spaces.
To celebrate all the department does for its’ communities and bring awareness to their services, July has been dubbed “National Park and Recreation Month.” Each year has a distinct theme, and 2017 is focused on the “Power of Play.” Play and physical activity promote both physical and mental health, and can offer an opportunity to get in touch with both community members and the outdoor environment. During July, the Parks Department is encouraging residents to document and share why play and parks are important to them.
To participate, simply post your pictures and stories on social media, using the hashtag “#PlayOnJuly.” You can also share the infographic, here, to increase awareness on the importance of play in one’s life.
For more information on the “Power of Play,” visit the National Recreation and Parks Association website here. Now, time to go outside and play!