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Seattle Parks and Recreation staff speak at national conference

Seattle Parks and Recreation staff were excited to be invited to speak at this year’s National Recreation and Park Association annual conference. From equity in partnerships to tracking web analytics to engaging the LGBTQ community, Seattle Parks and Recreation has a variety of content experts that were able to share professional case studies and best practices with their colleagues from across the country.

Check out staff presentations from this year’s conference below and get a taste for what our department does behind the scenes.


Integrated Marketing Communications: Serving Delicious Content to Digital Omnivores
Presented by Shelly Smith, Web Manager, and Katie McVicker, Communications Aide
The press release may be dead, but we’re not in mourning. We’re dancing on its grave. We’ve learned how to turn our website, blog and social media channels into an irresistible meal that offers something for every digital palate and brings real results. We’ll teach you how to transcend the meat-and-potatoes marketing fare that communications professionals of yesteryear came to rely on. You’ll learn how to improve customer service, control your message and promote a positive image for your organization without relying on a press release or the media. We’re in the self-serve information age and digital omnivores are everywhere. Learn how to deliver delicious content in dynamic and meaningful ways that keep them coming back to your digital table over and over again.

Find online presentation materials here.


More than Unicorns and Rainbows: Engaging LGBTQ Teens
Presented by Randy Wiger, Recreation Program Coordinator

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) teens are coming out ever earlier it seems, yet too many face heavy burdens as young people, so much so that every year some take their own lives. One burden we can change is to make our Recreation programs ever more welcoming to these vulnerable populations. Do you know how well your teen programs are serving LGBTQ youth? Find out how your programs and facilities can become ever safer and welcoming places for all teens, including LGBTQ teens.
Find online presentation materials here.

Social Equity in Public-Private Partnership Agreements
Presented by Jesús Aguirre, Superintendent

As more communities look to public-private partnerships (P3’s) to leverage public dollars, many park and recreation professionals are becoming concerned about the potential loss of public access and social equity in our parks, plazas, and open spaces.  Private sector managers of public open spaces often have the ability to establish policies regarding entrance fees, hours of operation, scheduling of special events, and closing parks to the general public during special uses.  As a result, residents and visitors may not just feel excluded from traditionally public spaces, but actually may be excluded.  Using case studies from around the U.S., this session will explore how park and recreation agencies can promote social equity and ensure that the “public” remains foremost in public-private partnership agreements.