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Giving thanks

Thanksgiving provides a wonderful opportunity to show gratitude to the Seattle Parks and Recreation heroes who go above and beyond in ensuring that we have the first-rate park and recreation system we have come to love and depend on. From volunteers who put in countless hours coaching youth sports leagues, to community groups who help care for and advocate for their neighborhood parks, to our employees who go the extra mile to get the job done, we are grateful for the time and commitment of so many in our community in helping us reach our goals of supporting healthy people, a healthy environment and strong communities.

Below are a few highlights of the countless groups deserving a big “thanks!” this holiday season.

Volunteers make the difference:

Last year, 37,722 people volunteered for Seattle Parks and Recreation, providing 231,675 hours of service. Volunteers donated precious time and energy to improving our trails, restoring our urban forest, coaching sports teams, and much more!

We are especially grateful to all the volunteers who came out on Green Seattle Day to help clean, restore, and beautify our parks, beaches and open spaces! Volunteers battled invasive weeds, installed native plants, repaired trails, removed trash, and a host of other activities. Thank you all for your hard work!

Recreation staff support community members in need:

As Seattle continues to experience a homelessness crisis, we are committed to ensuring access and opportunities for those living unsheltered. To that end, we have opened showers at several of our community centers to people experiencing homelessness. Last year, we had more than 1,000 usages of our free shower program.

Thank you to our Recreation staff at Delridge, Rainier, Miller, and Green Lake community centers for making this program a success! Staff have supported the program by conducting outreach to local partners to solicit donations, by ensuring shower facilities remain clean and welcoming for all, and by helping to launder, fold and distribute towels upon request.

“Jorge”, a community member receiving services at Delridge Community Center says, I am very thankful that I can come and shower and go to work the next day feeling refreshed. I am sure my boss and coworkers do too”.

Night Maintenance Team helps our buildings shine:

Thanks to the 2014 voter-approved Seattle Park District, we’ve added a Night Maintenance Team, which works on a variety of repairs, upgrades, and other preventive maintenance to better preserve our facilities. And because this team works at night, facilities such as our pools and community centers don’t have to be closed, and people can use them during the day!

The team is made up of a carpenter, electrician, plumber, painters, laborers, and a crew chief, and their work significantly reduces building system failures by replacing worn parts and making improvements that help ensure building health and safety for the public and the environment. To date, the team has completed 45 projects since its inception in 2015!