EDUCATION sessions block 9

Wednesday, October 26  |  11:15am-12:30pm


Data Driven Decisions: Using Trends and Demographics to Understand Your Market - Jeff Bransford, PROS Consulting 

As park and recreation professionals, it's important to stay abreast of emerging trends to create effective and meaningful programs and services that resonate with the community. This interactive session will review the latest recreation participation trends to ensure you're up to speed on "what's hot" and "what's not." The session will also discuss how to obtain and use demographic and economic data to track changes in your local market and make informed programming decisions.                                   


Room 213A


Room 216AB

Natural Resource Management Challenges and Successes in an Urban Environment - Christa Rogers, Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation                

Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Department owns and manages over 7000 acres of Nature Preserve all within 20 miles of downtown Charlotte, NC.  While the preserves are managed for wildlife habitat and biological diversity, there are challenges to traditional management practices in urban areas.  The Department’s Natural Resources Section has existed for over 20 years and has experienced many challenges and developed innovative strategies for being successful in projects from prescribed fire to wildlife and timber management.                  

Open Streets: This way to car(e) free streets- Al Bangoura, Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation and Scott Curry, City of Charlotte Department of Transportation

Open Streets Initiatives temporarily close streets to automobile traffic, so that citizens can walk, bike, jog, dance, skip, play and enjoy lots of other social activities that connect people and places.  In essence, Open Streets transform our streets into parks and playgrounds. Gil Penalosa, Executive Director of 8-80 Cities, said it best,  “People traffic replaces car traffic, and the streets become ˜paved parks’ where people of all ages, abilities, and social, economic, or ethnic backgrounds can come out and improve their mental, physical, and emotional health.” Open Streets are part of a growing livable cities movement, and Open Streets events are increasingly more common in towns and cities seeking new and fun ways to achieve environmental, social, economic, and public health goals. Open Streets is about connecting communities in new and exciting ways!                                     


Room 213D


Room 211AB

CrossFit: An Inclusive Workout for All Abilities -  Shawn Whitman and Kelly Hawkins, Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation 

CrossFit has become a fitness epidemic and it’s here to stay. There are many varying opinions and misconceptions about CrossFit and how it can be utilized. Most people believe CrossFit is only for the elite athlete. This session will take a look at the definition of CrossFit, “constantly varied, high-intensity, and functional movements,” and explore how these aspects and the nine functional movements of CrossFit can be adapted for all abilities despite any physical, developmental, or behavioral limitations. We will provide insight into how CrossFit can be adapted and scaled to fit all ages, body types, physical abilities, and levels of cognition.


Room 218AB

Getting them to Listen: Tools for Communication at All Levels - Teresa Penbrooke, NCSU, GreenPlay, and GP RED

Are you trying to move forward but running into walls?  Do your budget hearings feel like a nightmare?  Does it feel impossible to make decisions about new programs, staff or facilities? Communication is always an issue but how do we overcome that?  This session looks at tools and strategies to help with identification, articulation and communication of messages, resources, statistics, and economic impact findings to get your ideas and goals across.  We’ll cover helpful techniques like agenda restructuring, community needs assessment, mission-based planning, the Acceleration Review process, the Pyramid Methodology, Level of Service Analysis, benefits-focus, state and national strategic planning efforts and more, and provide sample documents and resources to help you get your message heard at all levels.



Room 212AB

Ready, Set, Go Live! - Chamreece Diggs and Tracy Pegram, High Point Parks and Recreation   

This session will go through the process of implementing a registration/reservation software. We will cover what you may expect from your vendor, credit card processor, other departments and the end users both within your department and you at home users.                                         


Room 213BC

SWAP Shop - Nick Reeves, Salisbury Parks & Recreation and Gary Mills, Kannapolis Parks & Recreation                                      

Come together with fellow parks and recreation professionals to ask questions and share experiences and advice related to all things parks and recreation. Questions and answers will be provided by attendees. The Swap Shop is a great way to follow up on any topics discussed earlier during the conference or to address topics not previously discussed!