Seattle Parks and Recreation seeks nominations for annual volunteer service awards

Seattle Parks and Recreation is seeking nominations for the Denny Awards, which honor volunteer service to the city’s parks system. The deadline for nominations is Monday, Oct. 14, 2013.

The awards will be presented at a recognition ceremony on Tuesday, Dec.3, 2013 at the Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI), 860 Terry Ave. N.

The Denny Awards acknowledge and honor the crucial role volunteers play in neighborhood parks, community centers, and recreation programs throughout the city. In 2012, more than 40,000 volunteers donated over 426,000 hours of service to Seattle Parks and Recreation. Their service is valued at between $8 and $10 million annually.

They do everything from pulling invasive ivy and planting native trees in our parks to coaching kids’ sports to working as docents at selected parks to serving on various advisory councils and boards.

“Volunteers are one of our most important resources,” said Acting Superintendent Christopher Williams. “Without the help of the community, we could not run the first rate park and recreation system that Seattle depends on.”

The name of the awards reflects the early commitment by the Denny family to the preservation of parkland and open space for public use and enjoyment. David T. and Louisa Denny donated land that became the first Seattle park, Denny Park, in 1864.

Denny Awards nominees should meet the following minimum qualifications. The nominee must have:

  • Demonstrated exceptional stewardship to parks and/or recreation;
  • Provided stellar leadership related to enhancing and preserving parks and/or recreation programs;
  • Demonstrated a significant personal commitment of time and effort to assist Seattle Parks and Recreation, and
  • Gained respect of community peers for efforts to help Seattle Parks and Recreation.

The nomination form for the award, specific criteria and related information (included with this news release) are available by contacting Karen O’Connor, Seattle Parks and Recreation, 206-684-7241, or karen.o’ To download an electronic version of the nomination form, visit:




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Volunteers wanted for Love Parks Day

Seattle Parks and Recreation, Seattle Parks Foundation, Green Seattle Partnership, EarthCorps and six corporate sponsors, including REI, have teamed up to host Love Parks Day on Friday, July 26, at Lincoln Park. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., volunteers will clean the park and remove invasive vegetation species.

The goal is to have 200 volunteers who will work with Seattle Parks and Recreation crews and Friends of Lincoln Park who have identified projects throughout this 135-acre park.

Not only will volunteers have the opportunity to invest in the future of one of Seattle’s most beautifully forested parks, but partners and sponsors will provide exclusive Love Parks tee-shirts, water bottles, lunch and snacks for those who pre-register.

In addition, everyone who volunteers gets a raffle ticket for a surprise give-away gift provided by REI. And REI staff will lead outdoor yoga to help volunteers get stretched out and ready before work begins, as well as during the lunch break.

Lincoln Park is one of the city’s largest and most popular parks. It is home to ballfields, playgrounds, trails, shoreline, and forest. To preserve Lincoln’s forests for future generations, we must act now. Invasive species like English ivy and Himalayan blackberry are choking out native vegetation and are bringing an early death to many of Lincoln’s old trees.

EarthCorps provides all gloves and tools needed to perform the work. The volunteer event will happen rain or shine, so please come dressed for the weather. It is recommended that volunteers wear long pants, bring a long sleeved shirt, and wear sturdy closed toe shoes.

We are grateful to REI, The Seneca Group, Wells Fargo, Safeco Insurance Foundation, the Seneca Real Estate Group, NBBJ, and Pacific Continental Bank for their generous support of this event.

Seattle Parks’ Lifelong Recreation sponsors “Remember the Hungry,” a volunteer opportunity for people with early stage memory loss

Seattle Parks and Recreation’s Lifelong Recreation Program is partnering with Northwest Harvest’s Cherry Street Food Bank on First Hill to offer “Remember the Hungry,” a monthly volunteer opportunity for people living with early stage memory loss.

This is an opportunity to provide a community service in a supportive group setting from 10 to 11:30 a.m. on these third Tuesdays: April 16, May 21 and June 18. Volunteers will work packaging and sorting food for Cherry Street Food Bank, which serves more than 5,000 people every week.

Please register ahead of time, as the program is limited to six participants on each Tuesday. For more information and to register, please call Mari Becker at 206-684-4664 or email her at

For more information on Parks’ Lifelong Recreation Program, please go to

Parks works in partnership with the Associated Recreation Council (ARC) to bring high-quality, accessible and affordable recreation opportunities to the people of Seattle. For more information on ARC, please see

Seattle’s Japanese Garden is seeking new tour guides

The Japanese Garden at Seattle’s Parks and Recreation’s Washington Park Arboretum has opened applications for training to become a volunteer tour guide.

Tour guides will give free guided tours to garden visitors and must learn the techniques of effective guides, elements of the Japanese Garden, Japanese history and culture, and the history and unique features of the Seattle Japanese Garden.

Training will be held on five consecutive Wednesdays, March 13 through April 10, 2013, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The fee for the training program is $100. A limited number of scholarships are available. The deadline for application is January 18, 2013.

Located within the Washington Park Arboretum, the Japanese Garden is a 3.5-acre formal garden designed and constructed under the supervision of world-renowned Japanese garden designer Juki Iida in 1960.

The Japanese Garden offers public tours free with admission on weekend days at 12:30 p.m., and 2:30 p.m., April through October. All tours start from the main gate, and are led by Arboretum Foundation Unit 86 Docents. These tours provide an educational introduction to the culture and history of the Seattle Japanese Garden.

For details, and to download an application, please visit                                                

For questions, contact:

Seattle Parks Seeks Communications Intern


Seattle Parks and Recreation is the steward of more than 6,200 acres of public lands, or approximately 10 percent of the total acreage within the City of Seattle. The department had more than 1 million registered users for our classes and programs in 2009. Seattle Parks and Recreation manages more than 430 parks, 26 community centers, 4 environmental learning centers, 10 swimming pools, 27 wading pools and 3 water play areas. We create community through people, parks and programs. 


Unpaid intern, Volunteer, Part-Time


Communications Strategic Advisor


If intern wishes to receive academic credit for the internship, it will be the intern’s responsibility to make arrangements with his or her school. Seattle Parks and Recreation will provide the necessary job description and performance review upon request.


This internship will assist the communications strategic advisor and the director of communications in ensuring high-quality publications through writing, editing and some production, and promoting the department’s programs and services through marketing vehicles, including press releases and social media. The intern will have the opportunity to design their work based on the outcomes they hope to achieve from the position.

Responsibilities may include:

  • Writing PSAs, press releases, e-newsletters, communication plans and letters
  • Developing flyers, forms, displays and PowerPoint presentations, etc.
  • Contacting media online professionals to initiate or follow up with outreach attempts
  • Assisting with photo and video opportunities
  • Working with programs to develop stories and generate media interest
  • Maintaining files and preparing written recommendations for future projects
  • Updating, maintaining and improving the department’s social media sites


  • Must be a student seeking a college degree or a recent graduate
  • Excellent written, verbal and visual communication skills required
  • Strong organizational and interpersonal skills a must
  • Good organizational and time management skills
  • Ability to manage multiple projects and meet deadlines
  • Must be self-sufficient, a self-starter and ready to learn
  • Willingness and ability to contact and work with members of online media
  • Ability to think creatively and to share ideas


This position requires sitting for extended periods of time while on the computer and telephone. The candidate also assists with gathering of supplies for some community events or presentations as well as creating displays and hanging signage.


  • Solid communications experience
  • The opportunity custom-design your own internship to meet your individual academic and career needs
  • Flexible hours, with appropriate notice, the supervisor will work to schedule hours around exams and other deadlines
  • The opportunity to interact with other professionals in the business, government and academic and nonprofit sectors
  • A great professional recommendation for your valuable work
  • Knowledge that you are making a difference in your community


  1. What are your career goals?
  2. What do you expect out an internship with Seattle Parks and Recreation?
  3. What special qualities will you bring to this internship?
  4. What is the time frame (day/month to day/month) that you expect to serve, and what days and hours are you available to work?

 Please send a cover letter, resume and answers to supplemental questions to:

Joelle Hammerstad by Friday, Sept. 17. No phone calls, please.

 Joelle Hammerstad

Communications Strategic Advisor

100 Dexter Ave. N

Seattle, WA 98109

Parks and Green Spaces Levy Oversight Committee Meeting

The Parks and Green Spaces Levy Oversight Committee will hold its next meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, September 29, at 100 Dexter Avenue N, the Parks Administration Building at Denny Way and Dexter Ave. N.  Please note that the Committee is meeting on Tuesday, instead of Monday, its regular meeting day. 

The agenda includes updates on the Levy acquisition and development programs, a discussion and recommendation regarding the 2000 Pro Parks Opportunity Fund balance, and a discussion of the 2008 Parks and Green Spaces Levy Opportunity Fund criteria. 

The Parks and Green Spaces Levy is a $146 million package of park development and acquisition projects approved by Seattle voters in November of 2008. For more information on the levy, please see For more information on the Oversight Committee, please see