Philadelphia parks system has new mission

    Philadelphia’s Department of Parks and Recreation says the city will have the nation’s premiere park and recreation system. The department will depend on volunteers to achieve that lofty goal.

    Philadelphia’s Department of Parks and Recreation has issued a mission statement outlining the goals of the newly merged departments. It says the city will have the nation’s premiere park and recreation system. The department will depend on volunteers to achieve that lofty goal.
    Caption: View: Museum to City Hall, Philadelphia
    Credit: by Flickr user Tony the Misfit

    Listen:
    [audio: 090622pcparks.mp3]

    Commissioner Mike DiBerardinis has been meeting with citizen groups that oversee neighborhood parks to learn what they want from the city’s new Parks and Recreation department. He has not said what has come of those meetings, which continue to take place.

    Many park programs are run by outside organizations like the Parks Alliance and the Horticultural Society. Fairmount Park director Mark Focht says the parks have always relied on volunteer labor.

    Focht: All the historic properties in the Fairmount system are run by volunteer organizations. None are staffed with park employees. Similarly in Recreation, many of their athletic programs are run by the athletic advisory councils, made up of volunteer citizens.

    The Parks and Recreation vision statement also vows to create department-wide sustainable practices.

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