Volunteer with Seattle Parks and Recreation


Join Seattle Parks and Recreation at a Volunteer Information Fair to learn about our volunteer opportunities. Our volunteers coach youth sports, help us plant native trees in our parks, serve on various advisory councils and boards, and provide countless other services that allow us to have the first-rate park and recreation system that Seattle loves and depends on.

We will be hosting a Volunteer Information Fair on January 25 from 12 to 3 p.m. at Rainier Community Center (4600 38th Ave. S), and on February 2 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Northgate Community Center (10510 5th Ave. NE). You can find out what opportunities are available, learn more about the jobs that volunteers do, ask questions and get registered as a volunteer on site. Plus, we will be serving a free lunch!

Representatives from several of our units will also be on hand to describe their volunteer needs, including the Green Seattle Partnership, our Environmental Learning Centers, Community Advisory Councils, Adopt a Park and more.

If you have questions or would like to sign up for this event, please call Cheryl Brown at 206-615-0619.

Seattle Parks and Recreation Martin Luther King, Jr. Day closures

20741989465_3f7df9da17_kMany Seattle Parks and Recreation facilities will be closed Monday, Jan. 16, in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

These facilities and services are CLOSED:

  • Community centers
  • Teen centers
  • Environmental Learning Centers
  • Indoor swimming pools
  • Small craft centers
  • Moorage Operations Office

These facilities are OPEN on regular schedules:

  • Boat ramps
  • Interbay, Jackson Park, Jefferson Park and West Seattle golf courses
  • Amy Yee Tennis Center

Youth to lead annual MLK march on Jan. 14


Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” –Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Seattle Parks and Recreation invites the public to join a youth-organized march to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Saturday, Jan. 14. Participants will gather at 11 a.m. at Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Park, 2200 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way, 98144. Teens will lead the march to Rainier Community Center, 4600 38th Ave. S, 98118.

The theme of Seattle Parks and Recreation’s Teen Program’s 2017 annual youth march is Honor the Cause: First Class Citizenship for all Mankind. Teens, families and community members from throughout the city will speak out against injustice via a peaceful demonstration. The goal for the march is to celebrate the contributions Seattle youth make in creating a better city and to honor the work that youth do to keep Dr. King’s dream alive every day.

At the event, participants will hear from keynote speaker Eddie Rye, Jr. and everyone will have the opportunity to participate in three different workshops. Following these activities there will be a group discussion, games, trivia, and a free meal.

The event is free of cost to all teens and community participants and will include food, live music, a safe environment and plenty of fun!

The link to the event page is: https://www.facebook.com/events/1016557558473533/

206 Forward-Youth Advocates of Seattle will be hosting a poster making pajama party on Friday, January 6 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Rainier Beach Community Center (8825 Rainier Ave. S). The public is invited to attend to create custom posters to be used in the MLK march on January 14.

For more information, please contact Cindy Sandino-Chang, Seattle Parks and Recreation, at 206-551-7316 or cindy.sandino-chang@seattle.gov.



South Park Community Center to close for one week for floor-resurfacing project


South Park Community Center will be closed from December 26 through January 2 so that the gym floor can be resurfaced. The community center will re-open on Tuesday, January 3.

South Park Community Center is located at 8319 8th Ave. S in Seattle’s South Park neighborhood.

For a list of other Seattle Parks and Recreation community centers, please visit https://www.seattle.gov/parks/find/centers/community-centers-a-z

Seattle Parks and Recreation issues RFP for Volunteer Coordination and Leadership for the Green Seattle Partnership

Seattle Parks and Recreation (SPR) is seeking proposals for consultants to provide volunteer coordination and leadership for the Green Seattle Partnership (GSP) program in 2017, with the possibility of an extension for 2018.

The Green Seattle Partnership was formed in 2004 with a memorandum of understanding between the City of Seattle and Forterra; the partners created a 20 Year Strategic Plan with benchmarks and goals to restore all 2,500 acres of Seattle’s forested parkland by 2025. Now halfway through the initial 20-year strategic plan, Seattle’s forested parklands are well on their way to being restored to verdant, valuable and beneficial spaces for communities to enjoy. SPR is responsible for the support of the GSP’s efforts to engage the community and manage the citywide restoration of forested parklands.

Through this Request for Proposal (RFP) process, SPR is looking for a partner or partners who can develop long-term volunteer resources for the continued care of SPR’s GSP sites, focusing recruiting efforts on underrepresented community stakeholders. This is an exciting opportunity to work with SPR to recruit for, organize, and lead volunteers in forest stewardship activities; lead education activities for participating volunteers; organize volunteer appreciation efforts, and provide general Forest Steward Support among other tasks.

The RFP can be downloaded by clicking here, or you can request a copy and direct questions to:

Project Manager: Jon Jainga, Manager II
Seattle Parks and Recreation
1600 S. Dakota St.
Seattle, WA 98108

Proposals are due to Mr. Jon Jainga by 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2016. Proposers must submit one original unbound, two bound copies, and one electronic CD copy of the response.

15th annual Polar Bear Plunge set for Jan. 1 at Matthews Beach


Start off the New Year with a splash!

Seattle Parks and Recreation and the Meadowbrook Community Center Advisory Council are co-sponsoring the 15th annual Polar Bear Plunge at noon on Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017 at Matthews Beach, 9300 51st Ave. NE. The Polar Bear Plunge is a FREE event. Registration begins at 10 a.m., and the plunge starts at noon sharp.

A 2017 Commemorative Badge of Courage will be given to all heroic Polar Bear participants who immerse themselves neck-deep in the water. The patch will show the world that participants braved the frigid waters.

As in previous years, younger polar bears and anyone else who needs a little more room can take part in the Polar Cub Club part of the event immediately preceding the main plunge. For the truly hearty, double-dipping is allowed.

Seattle Parks and Recreation offers a few tips for enjoying a fun, safe swim:

  • Make the plunge even more special by dressing up in a costume!
  • Come early, and carpool or take the bus (you can plan your trip at http://tripplanner.kingcounty.gov/).
  • If you have heart problems or other serious medical concerns, we recommend that you consult your healthcare professional before taking the Polar Bear Plunge. If you can’t go in the water, come and watch!
  • Don’t drink alcohol–it doesn’t warm you up, and it accelerates hypothermia.
  • Stay in the water for no longer than 15 minutes—you lose body heat 25 times faster in water than in air.
  • Keep your outer clothing on until you’re ready to get in the water. After the plunge, remove wet clothing before getting into dry clothes.

The Polar Bear Plunge was the first official event of its kind in the Seattle area and has inspired other, similar events throughout the region. Janet Wilson, Aquatic Center Coordinator at Meadowbrook Pool, started the event on Jan. 1, 2003. About 300 people participated in that first Polar Bear Plunge, and since then the attendance has soared to more than 1,900 brave bears. Like the plunge on Facebook here.

Board of Park Commissioners to hold regular meeting

The Board of Park Commissioners will hold their regular meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 8 in the Kenneth R. Bounds Board Room at the Parks Administration Building (100 Dexter Ave. N).

The Board of Park Commissioners will hold a study session on the draft People, Dogs and Parks Strategic Plan. Seattle Parks and Recreation staff will present the updated draft Plan, followed by an opportunity for the Commissioners to confer with professionals to address questions on animal behavior, environmental impacts and experiences from other urban park systems.The Board will also discuss the written and verbal testimony they have received, as well as proposed modifications to the plan based on public comment. The People, Dogs and Parks Strategic Plan is located here.

There will not be a vote and there will be no public testimony at this meeting.

The Board of Park Commissioners Agenda is available here.

The Seattle Board of Park Commissioners is a nine-member citizen board created by the City Charter. Four members are appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the City Council; four members are appointed by the City Council; and one member is a young adult appointed by YMCA Get Engaged. The Board generally meets twice a month, normally on the second and fourth Thursday, to advise the Parks and Recreation Superintendent, the Mayor, and the City Council on parks and recreation matters.

Seattle Parks and Recreation winter holiday closures


Many Seattle Parks and Recreation facilities will be closed or on modified schedules in observance of winter holidays:

  • Community centers and environmental learning centers will close at 5 p.m. on Dec. 24 and 31, and will be closed Dec. 25 and 26, and Jan. 1 and 2.
  • Teen Centers and Late Night programs will be closed on Dec. 24, 25, 26 and. 31, and Jan. 1 and 2.
  • Indoor swimming pools will close at 3 p.m. on Dec. 24 and 31, and will be closed Dec. 25., 26, and Jan. 1 and 2.
  • Small Craft Centers will be closed on Dec. 24, 25, 26, and Jan. 1 and 2.
  • Golf courses will close at 2 p.m. on Dec. 24 and 31 and will be closed on Dec. 25. Golf courses will be open on Jan. 1. (Schedules subject to change. Some courses may be open later than 2 p.m. Please call specific courses directly before your trip. Contact information can be found at http://premiergc.com/-contact-us.)
  • Amy Yee Tennis Center will be open from 7 a.m. – 3 p.m. Dec. 24, 7 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. on Dec. 26, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Dec. 31, and 7 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. on Jan. 2. The center will be closed on Dec. 25 and Jan. 1.
  • The Moorage Operations Office will be open Dec. 22-23, Dec. 28-30 from 12 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Dec. 31 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. The office will be closed Dec. 24 and 25.

REVISED: Seattle Parks and Recreation seeks names for two new park sites in the Yesler and Fremont neighborhoods

The deadline for submitting suggested names for the planned Yesler Neighborhood Park is being extended to Feb. 1, 2017. Seattle Parks and Recreation (SPR) is collaborating with the Seattle Housing Authority (SHA) on outreach regarding the naming process. Over the next two months, SHA will be communicating with Yesler residents, external organizations, and residents and businesses in the surrounding neighborhoods to solicit park name suggestions.

Please submit suggestions for Yesler Neighborhood Park names to the Parks Naming Committee by Feb. 1, 2017.

Yesler Neighborhood Park: The scope of this project is to develop a 1.7-acre neighborhood park that is part of the Yesler Terrace Master Planned Community. The intent of the park is to serve as a gathering place for current and future residents of Yesler Terrace as well as people who live and work in the surrounding community. The 2008 Parks and Green Spaces Levy provides $3,000,000 for a new park at Yesler Terrace. Additional funding has been secured from the Seattle Housing Authority, State of Washington Recreation Conservation Office Recreation Grant, RAVE Foundation, Stim Bullitt Park Excellence Fund, Wyncote Foundation, and Pendleton and Elisabeth Carey Miller Foundation. The overall budget now totals $4,330,000. More information can be found here.

Nominations for Troll’s Knoll Park Development were due to the parks Naming Committee on Nov. 16, 2016.

Troll’s Knoll Park Development: This project utilized existing public land to create a new park in the heart of Fremont. The park is a model design of a sustainable park space and provides a critical pedestrian link to other areas of Fremont, particularly bus stops and the developing neighborhood business district in northern Fremont. The Parks and Green Spaces Levy Opportunity Fund allocated $685,000 to this project. More information can be found here.

About the Parks Naming Committee and Park Naming Policy:

The Parks Naming Committee is comprised of one representative designated by the Board of Park Commissioners, one by the Chair of the City Council Parks, Seattle Center, Libraries and Waterfront Committee, and one by the Parks Superintendent. Criteria the committee considers in naming parks include: geographical location, historical or cultural significance, and natural or geological features. The Park Naming Policy, clarifying the criteria applied when naming a park, can be found at http://www.seattle.gov/parks/Publications/namingPolicy.htm

The Parks Naming Committee will consider all suggestions and make a recommendation to Seattle Parks and Recreation Superintendent Jesús Aguirre, who makes the final decision.

Please submit suggestions for park names for Yesler Neighborhood Park in writing by Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017, and include an explanation of how your suggestion matches the naming criteria. Send to Seattle Parks and Recreation, Parks Naming Committee, 100 Dexter Ave. N, Seattle, WA 98109, or by e-mail to paula.hoff@seattle.gov.

Pathway of Lights returns to Green Lake on Saturday, Dec. 10


Seattle Parks and Recreation presents the Pathway of Lights at Green Lake on Saturday, Dec. 10, 2016 from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m., rain or shine.

Join thousands of families, friends and neighbors for this beloved Seattle tradition. Travel the 2.8-mile path around the lake, taking in the warm glow of the luminaria, music and refreshments. Visitors are encouraged to bring their own lights and candles to add to the ambiance.

Local musicians will perform at three sites around the lake:

  • Green Lake Community Center on the east side
  • The Aqua Theater on the south side
  • The Bathhouse Theater (Seattle Public Theatre) on the north side

This fun event is free, but community members are encouraged to bring non-perishable food donations to benefit neighbors in need through the FamilyWorks food bank. Food donation bins, as well as warm drinks and treats, will be available at the locations listed above.

Volunteers are needed to help place and light the thousands of luminaria and to clean up after the event. Individuals, businesses, community organizations and school and scout groups are welcome to participate. Setup takes place from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. and cleanup from 7:30 to 9 p.m. If you’re interested in volunteering, please contact Vicki Allgood at 206-684-0780 or vicki.allgood@seattle.gov.

This Seattle tradition is presented in partnership with the Green Lake Advisory Council and with help from community partners, PCC Natural Markets, the Green Lake Masonic Lodge #149, Seattle City Light, Green Lake Chamber of Commerce, FamilyWorks, and the Associated Recreation Council.

Become a fan of the Pathway of Lights Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/GreenLakePathwayofLights, to get updates about the event. For more information, please contact Green Lake Community Center at 206-684-0780 or email Chris Easterday at chris.easterday@seattle.gov.

Entertainment lineup: