More On Saturday's "Love Your Parks" Summit, Which Clearly Has Inspired Mike Rawlings

Categories: City Hall, Events
Mike_Rawlings_Merten.jpg
Sam Merten
Mike Rawlings, Park Board prez and poet
And speaking of the city of Dallas's parks ...

No doubt you've forgotten all about the August 19 save the date sent by the city -- an invite to this weekend's first-ever Dallas Parks Stakeholders' Summit at the Music Hall at Fair Park. Hence, the just-sent reminder that follows, in which, turns out, the Saturday-long jam has been rebranded the Dallas Parks Stakeholders' "Love Your Parks" Summit. All the details follow, but most important: Mayor Tom's scheduled to speak at 9 a.m., after which attendees will get to visit with their respective council members. Register here.

Says Park and Rec Board President Mike Rawlings in stressing the need to re-engage the citizenry in parks urban and otherwise:
"Walt Disney once said he didn't want the public to see the world where they live when they were at Disneyland. He wanted them to feel they were in another world. Parks can do that for you too. They are places to get lost in the beauty of play, in the serenity of the grounds, in the escape of the outdoors where the boundaries are large and the horizon is distant."
I believe he cribbed that from my dream journal.
Summit Addresses Essential Role of Parks and Recreation Programs In Shaping Dallas' Urban Vitality

Building strong citizen alliances and partnerships is what the City of Dallas Park and Recreation Board hopes will happen at the board's first Dallas Parks Stakeholders' "Love Your Parks" Summit that gets under way at 8 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 6 at the Music Hall at Fair Park.

A keynote address by Mayor Tom Leppert begins at 9 a.m. followed by the opportunity for attendees to visit with their respective City Council members at 9:45 a.m.

Park Board President Mike Rawlings said the Summit will bring individuals and citizen groups together to learn about the benefits of parks and recreation programs within their communities. He added that the forum will educate citizens about the critical need to invest in urban parks and recreation programs and encourage them to become parks and recreation advocates.

"Parks are among the most important resources our city has to offer. Well-maintained parks contribute to the economic, social, health and environmental vitality of our city," Rawlings said.

Stakeholders will learn more about the essential benefits of parks and recreation through educational sessions led by acclaimed park and recreation experts. Attendees can attend two of 19 classroom-like learning sessions which examine issues and opportunities critical to the parks and recreation field. Topics will include public-private partnerships, effective friends groups, citizen advocacy, capital projects funding, and grants writing.

The Summit is free and citizens can register at a City of Dallas recreation center or online at http://dallasparkssummit.eventbrite.com/. To register by phone, call Fair Park at (214) 670-8400.

Lee Kleinman, Park Board member and event organizer, anticipates the forum attracting members of established and newly organized friends groups, sports and athletic clubs, homeowners and neighborhood associations, environmental coalitions, and community social and civic organizations.

The Park Board joins with the Dallas Park and Recreation Department, Dallas Parks Foundation, Center for Nonprofit Management and Volunteer Center of North Texas to present the Summit. Event sponsors are Herb's Paint and Body Shops, Brown Reynolds Watford Architects, Pacheco Koch, Austin Industries, Jasper Quintanillo Engineers.

"Walt Disney once said he didn't want the public to see the world where they live when they were at Disneyland. He wanted them to feel they were in another world. Parks can do that for you, too. They are places to get lost in the beauty of play, in the serenity of the grounds, in the escape of the outdoors where the boundaries are large and the horizon is distant," Rawlings said.

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