Latest News

March 24th, 2017 - GRPA New Executive Director

We would like to welcome our new Executive Director, Steve Card, from Dalton Parks & Rec. His first day on the job will be April 10th. His email address is: scard@grpa.org He is going to be a great addition to our team!

March 15th, 2017 - Webinar Links & Physical Meeting Dates - Mandatory Swim & Track Meetings

SPECIAL REGISTRATION REQUIREMENTS SO YOU & YOUR ORGANIZATION CAN GET CREDIT - PLEASE BE SURE TO FOLLOW the Information below: 1. Enter First Name: (ex. Craig) 2. Enter Last Name + Org: (ex. Sowell-Tift County) Webinar must be on your front screen to show present; you must remain on phone to show present. GRPA ANNOUNCES DATE FOR THE 2017 WEBINARS & PHYSICAL MEETINGS- The Georgia Recreation and Park Association member agencies are required to attend mandatory Swimming and Track Meetings for the current year which their teams plan to compete in District and State. All participating agencies are required to attend one of the three statewide meetings to cover the rules and regulations for the state swimming or track meet. Agencies that do not attend must pay a fine of $200 to the GRPA office. In an effort to assist Agencies that continue to compete from one year to the next, the SAC host Sites and the GRPA Professional Development Committee are launching several online webinars to assist members in meeting this requirement. The first of these meetings has been scheduled. If the participant/s log out early they will not receive credit for attending. As GRPA advertises the online webinars, they will be targeting Agencies in GRPA who continually participate in Swimming or Track. Webinars will include SEPARATE SESSIONS for both Track and Swimming. Those agencies that register for the GRPA SAC Webinars to meet the mandatory meeting compliance in regards to Track and Swimming for GRPA will be sent the presentations once we have received the GoToMeeting Report and determined who actively participated. IN ORDER TO RECEIVE CREDIT FOR BOTH TRACK & SWIMMING MEETING ATTENDANCE, BOTH WEBINARS AND/OR PHYSICAL MEETINGS FOR EACH SPORT WILL NEED TO BE ATTENDED. It is highly recommended you have your team’s coach(es) attend as well. The webinars are scheduled to last approximately 1 ½ hours with an additional 30 minutes for questions and answers (Overall time roughly 2 hrs. with Questions). State Host and GRPA SAC staff will be available to answer questions. SPECIAL REGISTRATION REQUIREMENTS SO YOU & YOUR ORGANIZATION CAN GET CREDIT - PLEASE BE SURE TO FOLLOW the Information below: 1. Enter First Name: (ex. Craig) 2. Enter Last Name + Org: (ex. Sowell-Tift County) Webinar must be on your front screen to show present; you must remain on phone to show present. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. View System Requirements GRPA SAC MANDATORY SWIMMING MEETING/WEBINARS GRPA SAC MANDATORY SWIMMING WEBINARS Join us for a webinar on Apr 11, 2017 at 10:00 AM EDT. Register now! https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6423557317218198785 Join us for a webinar on Apr 27, 2017 at 2:00 PM EDT. Register now! https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/853801946323769345 Join us for a webinar on May 09, 2017 at 10:00 AM EDT. Register now! https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8288180603856792833 Join us for a webinar on May 25, 2017 at 2:00 PM EDT. Register now! https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4716663371631096577 GRPA MANDATORY SWIMMING -PHYSICAL MEETINGS 1. Wednesday, April 5th, 2017 at 1:00 pm, Tift County (after SAC meeting) - Craig Sowell, Carla Wilson, & Cara Gordon 2. Thursday, June 8th, 2017 at 1:00 pm, Site #1: Tift County Recreation Department, TCRD Office, 401 Victory Drive N Tifton, GA 31794. Contact: Craig Sowell, craig.sowell@tiftcounty.org . 229-388-2599 (cell) / 229-382-3262 (office) 3. Thursday, June 8th, 2017 at 1:00 pm, Site #2: Cumming Aquatic Center, 201 Aquatic Circle Cumming GA 30040 Contact: Carla Wilson, cwilson@cityofcumming.net 404-597-0250 (cell) / 770-781-1781 (office) GRPA SAC MANDATORY TRACK MEETING/WEBINARS GRPA SAC MANDATORY TRACK MEETING Join us for a webinar on Mar 30, 2017 at 10:00 AM EDT. Register now! https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5719195874812998147 Join us for a webinar on Apr 11, 2017 at 2:00 PM EDT. Register now! https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4228458218665895425 Join us for a webinar on Apr 27, 2017 at 10:00 AM EDT. Register now! https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5677798162516521473 PHYSICAL MEETINGS 1. * Wednesday, March 29th at 1:00 pm (North Track Mtg) , Jackson County Parks & Recreation, 441 Gordon Street Jefferson, GA 30549. Contact: Bobby Martin, rmartin@augustaga.gov 706-826-1354 2. Wednesday, April 5th, 2017 at 2:30 pm , Tift County (after SAC meeting), Craig Sowell Tift County Recreation Department, TCRD Office, 401 Victory Drive N Tifton, GA 31794. Contact: Craig Sowell, craig.sowell@tiftcounty.org . 229-388-2599 (cell) / 229-382-3262 (office) 3. Thursday, April 6, 2017 at 11:00 am (South Track Mtg), Statesboro Recreation Dept, 1 Max Lockwood Drive, Statesboro GA 30461 Statesboro Rec #: 912-764-5637, Contact: Bobby Martin, rmartin@augustaga.gov 706-826-1354 Speakers for the online webinars/sessions and live sessions will include the Current GRPA Chairman, State hosts for Track along with the State Swim Meet Hosts. The webinars are scheduled to last approximately 1 ½ hours with an additional 30 minutes for questions and answers (overall time roughly 2 hours with questions). Thank you for your patience as GRPA helps enhance your educational opportunities via the web. GUIDELINES FOR WEBINARS: 1. Mute your phones. Ask questions at the end of the presentation or use the Chat Feature. 2. In order to get credit, you must stay on the webinar for 45 minutes minimum and GoToMeetings must be at the front of your computer screen or else the report collected at the conclusion of the presentation will show that you were not present for any time when GTM is behind other items (email, etc.). 3. If you call on your phone and log in to your computer and then exit from one device, GTM will show that you are not present. You must stay logged in to both devices. 4. Webinar registration info to be distributed by Districts.

February 24th, 2017 - 12U Boys Class B State Tournament

January 24th, 2017 - GRPA Mandatory Swim and Track Meetings for 2017

2017 GRPA Mandatory Swim and Track Meetings

December 8th, 2016 - 2017 GRPA Leadership II

Please see the attached application for additional information.

December 8th, 2016 - 2017 GRPA New Initiative Grant

Any agency that did not receive one of these grants in 2016 is eligible to apply. One $1,000 grant will be awarded in each district.

November 15th, 2016 - 1st Annual GRPA Heart & Sole 5K Run/Walk

You are cordially invited! 1st Annual GRPA Heart & Sole 5K Run/Walk Saturday, February 11, 2017 - 8:30am Clayton County International Park at the Beach - Jonesboro, GA The Georgia Recreation and Park Association was formed in 1945 as a private, non-profit institution to support and promote the recreation and park industries within the state of Georgia. It is the only state organization that serves as an advocate for quality recreation and park areas, facilities, programs and services at the local level. This event will raise money for the GRPA Leadership courses and programs. These programs benefit current and future recreation professionals who want to be involved within committees and organizations within GRPA. Participants can register online by clicking here: GRPA Heart & Sole 5K or by paper application found on at www.grpa.org .For paper registrations, checks can be made payable to: Georgia Recreation and Park Association (GRPA) with memo “Leadership” and mailed to Jefferson Parks and Recreation Department - 2495 Old Pendergrass Road, Jefferson, GA 30549.

July 22nd, 2016 - Kennesaw State University Facility Visit. Presented by the Athletic/Aquatics Network

July 15th, 2016 - USA Diving Olympic Send-off to Rio

USA Diving will host its official team ‘Send-off’ in Atlanta, prior to departing for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio. The ‘Send-off’ will take place from July 19-23 at the Coach Herb McAuley Aquatic Center on the campus of Georgia Tech. It will be Team USA’s final public appearance on American soil. In addition to the 2016 U.S. Olympic Diving Team, members of the 1996 U.S. Olympic Diving Team are headed to Atlanta to join the festivities. All sessions are free to the general public. USA Diving will provide memorabilia for autographs. Open Practice and Autograph Session Schedule Wednesday, July 20 Water Training Practice Session: 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Water Training Practice Session: 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. *will feature special ‘Dive-in’ commentating by Cynthia Potter and Greg Louganis Autograph Session (H20 Café): 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. Friday, July 22 Water Training Practice Session: 2:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. Saturday, July 23 Autograph Session (H20 Café): 8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. Water Training Practice Session: 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. For additional information on the open practices, autograph sessions and parking please visit: http://www.crc.gatech.edu/aquatics/ We hope to see you there!

July 1st, 2016 - Call for Nominations

GRPA is now accepting applications from members who would like to serve on the GRPA Board of Trustees. Only officer positions are available this year since neither of the Trustee positions expire until next year. Complete the attached application and submit it to the GRPA office no later than 4:00pm on August 12th. You can nominate someone else or you can nominate yourself but all signatures must be included on the application.

June 1st, 2016 - Georgia Games Aquatic Events

Please see the attachments for additional information on the upcoming Georgia Games Aquatic Events.

May 17th, 2016 - Pest Manager Training to be Held in Marietta

Earn 5 hours of recertification credits June 17 in Marietta At the Pest Manager Training held on Friday, June 17 at the Country Inn & Suites at Windy Hill in Marietta, pest managers can learn about current issues while earning up to 5 hours of recertification credit! Attendees can earn 5 hours Commercial Pesticide Credit (to divide over any categories), 5 hours Georgia Structural HPC credits, 5 hours ISA arborist CEUs, and 5 CFE credits (category 1) from the Society of American Foresters. Register online, see an agenda or find more information at https://pmtmarietta.eventbrite.com Register early and save! The registration fee is $64 until June 9 and $69 afterwards. Register early – these classes often fill up! Hope to see you at the Pest Manager Training Friday, June 17 in Marietta!

May 10th, 2016 - May is National Water Safety Month

Georgia is listed among the top ten states in the Nation for unintentional drownings for children under the age of fifteen. We, as parks and recreation professionals, can do more to help prevent these tragic losses of life. The GRPA Athletics/Aquatics Network has prepared a toolkit to help you develop your own water safety program. The time is drawing near for many people to be in around bodies of water so the time is now! Feel free to use each of the attachments below. If you would like the receive the sample proclamation in Word format, please contact the GRPA office.

March 10th, 2016 - Class B/C State Track Meet - Hotel Options

Please see attached list of hotels for the 2016 GRPA Class B/C State Track Meet.

March 3rd, 2016 - 2016 GRPA Programmers Network Workshop

This year's programming workshop will be held on April 19th in Gwinnett County's George Pierce Park Community Recreation Center. A broad range of recreation programming topics will be covered throughout the day. Registration for this annual workshop is just $25 which covers all instruction, breakfast, and lunch. Don't miss this great opportunity!

February 9th, 2016 - Four CEU Sessions to be Offered during Spring BOT Meetings

Once again, there will be four CEU sessions offered during our Board of Trustees meetings. Tuesday - 3/15 - 4:30-5:30pm - Improving Staff Development through Professional Development - Koboi Simpson 5:30-6:30pm - Dinner Tuesday - 3/15 - 6:30-7:30pm - The Customers Perception is Your Reality - Ben McDaniel/Missy Bailey/Holli Browder Wednesday - 3/16 - 9:00-10:00am - Supervisory Leadership - Cajen Rhodes Wednesday - 3/16 - 10:15-11:15am - The Undeniable Divide-Creating One Department, One Culture - James Albright There is no fee for these sessions but registration is mandatory by Wednesday, March 9th. Address: UGA-Griffin Campus - Stuckey Hall 1109 Experiment Street Griffin, GA

February 9th, 2016 - Swimming/Track Orientation Meeting/Webinar Schedule Released

Per the rules and regulations included in the GRPA Athletic Manual, any agency wishing to participate in the state track meet or the state swim meet is required to attend one of the orientation webinars or meetings. While it is mandatory for a staff person to attend, it is also recommended that your team’s coach also attend to make them aware of the GRPA rules. Please see the attachment for a listing of all webinars and meetings. They have also been added to the GRPA calendar on the website.

December 18th, 2015 - GRPA Leadership I Program

The 2016 GRPA Leadership I Program will be held April 11-13 at Rock Eagle. If you have never completed the GRPA Leadership series, you are definitely encouraged to apply. The deadline to submit your application to the GRPA office is Friday, March 4th. The application is attached.

December 18th, 2015 - New Program Grants to be Offered Again in 2016

The GRPA Board of Trustees has once again approved funds to award seven $1,000 new program grants to GRPA agencies. There will be one grant awarded in each of the seven districts. For additional information and instructions on how to apply, please see the attached flyer. Don't forget - the deadline to apply is Friday, January 29, 2016.

December 10th, 2015 - CAPRA Agency Accreditation Workshop

The Athens-Clarke County Leisure Services Department will be hosting the workshop at the Lyndon House Arts Center on January 26, 2016. For additional information, please see the attached flyer.

December 10th, 2015 - Call for Sessions - 2016 GRPA Conference - Athens, GA

The Georgia Recreation and Park Association is now accepting session proposals for the 2016 Annual Conference & Trade Show that will be held in Athens, GA on November 7-10. The attached session proposal form can be completed and sent to the GRPA office no later than March 18, 2016.

November 30th, 2015 - Playground Maintenance Safety Training

Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation will once again partner with the US Play Coalition in 2016 to offer a comprehensive program for managing safe playgrounds. For additional information and registration material, please click on the attachment.

October 19th, 2015 - Call for Sessions - Park Pride Annual Parks and Greenspace Conference

Park Pride is accepting presentation and pre-conference event proposals for the Annual Parks and Greenspace Conference at the Atlanta Botanical Garden on Monday, March 21, 2016. Breakout sessions, hands-on workshops and pre-conference events* will focus on this year's conference theme, "Parks & Play: A Conversation for All Ages." Successful presentations will offer a unique and innovative opportunity for attendees to explore play. Breakout sessions are 75 minutes in length and offer lecture-style presentations, panel discussions, or hands-on workshops on Monday, March 21st. Presenters are encouraged to budget at least 10 minutes for questions and answers with participants. Approximately 8-12 proposals will be accepted for the breakout session presentations. If appropriate, similar or complementary presentations may be combined into panels for a more diverse dialog.

October 15th, 2015 - State Volleyball Tournament

November 13th-14th Deadline to register: November 9th

October 1st, 2015 - Gainesville Parks and Recreation Earns National Reaccreditation in Parks and Recreation

Gainesville Parks and Recreation continues to join the ranks of elite park and recreation agencies and departments across the country by earning reaccreditation through the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) and the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA). This marks the 4th time that Gainesville Parks and Recreation has earned the honor since 2000 under the leadership of Accreditation Manager Brenda Martin. The distinguished accomplishment was awarded during the 2015 NRPA Annual Conference in Las Vegas, NV. CAPRA accreditation is the only national accreditation for park and recreation agencies and is a measure of an agency’s overall quality of operation, management and service to the community. This mark of distinction indicates that an agency has met rigorous standards related to the management and administration of lands, facilities, resources, programs, safety and services. As part of the accreditation process, Gainesville Parks and Recreation had to demonstrate compliance with 151 recognized standards and document all policies and procedures. Often the process helps identify efficiencies and heighten areas of accountability, all of which translate into higher quality service and operation to benefit the community. Dr. Susan Daniell, Parks and Recreation Board Chair stated “National Accreditation and the CAPRA seal is proof that we do what we say we do, and we do it well. We want our community and its citizens to know how proud we are to have served them well.” The process for accreditation involves a formal application, self-assessments, a site visit by a team of trained visitors that results in a written report, and a hearing with the commission to grant accreditation. Once accredited, the agency must uphold the standards by submitting an Annual Report and is reviewed again in five years. The Commission is comprised of representatives from NRPA, the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration, the National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials, the International City/County Management Association, the Academy for Leisure Sciences, the Armed Forces Recreation Network and the Council of State Executive Directors. Currently there are 135 accredited agencies nationwide including 10 from Georgia.

September 11th, 2015 - From Tennis Balls to Tennis Courts

Did you know that almost all of the 125 million tennis balls sold in the US each year end up in our landfills- and are expected to take 450 years to decompose? This is because tennis balls have required a separate grinding/recycling process, and there has never been an economic rationale to create that. Yes, Golden Retrievers, elderly walkers and school desks can use some used balls- but not nearly enough. Discarded tennis balls has – up until now – been a black hole in our commitment to recycling. Last week Ace Surfaces and Advanced Polymer Technology, the manufacturer of Laykold, the official tennis court surface of the Miami Open since 1984, installed the first of the Tennis Ball Courts at Tenafly Racquet Club in Tenafly, NJ. “It’s time for the tennis industry to wake up and be a part of the solution”, says Andreas Schulze Ising, CEO of Advanced Polymer Technology. Tennis balls that have bounced their last on the court will now leave a legacy for the bounce of future generations of tennis balls as they can now be ground up and incorporated as a component in tennis court construction and resurfacing. And the surfaces are the best in the business, combining excellent playability with durability, while offering a shock-absorption that is unmatched, even by clay courts. Up to 10,000 tennis balls are incorporated into a single cushioned court surface and can provide a 21% force reduction. By lessening the impact traditional hard courts have on a player's joints, these courts will extend the tennis careers of players of all abilities, protect young players whose bodies are not fully developed, and perhaps pull a few seasoned players out of a too early retirement. "Many years of ideas, discussions, trials and product development culminate in these high performance tennis courts" said Franz Fasold, owner of Ace Surfaces and the mastermind behind the implementation of the recycled tennis ball courts. “The Laykold Masters 5 and Laykold Masters 8 are designed to be world class and the systems can be installed as new construction or overlay existing, cracked tennis courts.” Retour Tennis, who provides a specialized tennis ball collection bin for public and private facilities to begin a recycling program, has partnered with Rebounces, a tennis industry supplier focused on recycling, to enable communities and clubs to contribute to these new efforts. How to Recycle Your Tennis Balls Individuals, clubs or organizations can simply collect 200 balls, request a pre-paid shipping label at http://tennisballrecycling.com, and send the box of tennis balls to Rebounces. The balls are then sorted and consolidated prior to their final trip to be ground. For more information about how to begin recycling tennis balls, go to www.retourtennis.com.

July 22nd, 2015 - Gwinnett County Lifeguards Win State Competition Fourth Year in a Row

For the fourth year in a row, Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation (GCPR) took first place at the annual Georgia Recreation and Park Association State Lifeguarding Competition held on Lake Oconee in Greene County on July 20. GCPR lifeguards come from several different park aquatics facilities throughout Gwinnett County. These lifeguards were selected for the Gwinnett County State Team based on their outstanding lifeguarding, CPR/AED, first aid, teamwork, and athletic skills. These guards practiced and honed their abilities throughout the summer with quizzing, skill practice sessions, conditioning and studying written materials. The team consisted of Jordan Rubin, a college student, works his summers as a lifeguard at Rhodes Jordan Pool in Lawrenceville. Nyota Edijidimo, a high school student, and Ronnie Taylor, a college student, both work at Mountain Park Aquatic Center in Lilburn. Daniel Lammons and Reagan Balog, both upcoming seniors in high school, work their summers at Collins Hill Aquatic Center alongside Philip Jenny, a recent high school graduate preparing for his first year of college this fall. The competition consisted of several events evaluating teamwork, athletic ability and lifeguarding knowledge. The Gwinnett County team proudly earned 27 points with high finishes in the majority of the events. The team took first in both the triathlon and rescue events, second in the CPR and swim events and third in the rescue paddle board event. The team was supervised and coached by Aquatics Coordinators Christine Greenfield and Jason Cutchins. “Winning four years in a row has never been done in the history of the state competition. We are extremely proud of the lifeguard team for their victory at state. Our lifeguard team takes great pride in their training and skill execution and they were excited to use it in a competition setting,” said Christine Greenfield. Photo caption: Left to right, Daniel Lammons, Jordan Rubin, Philip Jenny, Nyota Edijidimo, Ronnie Taylor, Reagan Balog

July 10th, 2015 - Four CEU Sessions to be Offered During Fall BOT Meetings

In an effort to maximize the opportunities for our members to earn CEU's, four CEU sessions will be offered during the fall Board of Trustees meetings in Griffin on September 22nd and 23rd. While there is no charge to attend the sessions, pre-registration is required. Please see the attached registration form for a listing of sessions. A free dinner will also be served to the participants between the two sessions on Tuesday evening. Don't delay...register today by filling out the form and returning it to the GRPA office!

June 17th, 2015 - GRPA members receive exclusive discounts on Youth Sports Congress registration

The National Alliance for Youth Sports has teamed up with the Georgia Recreation and Parks Association to offer their members special pricing on registration for the 2015 Youth Sports Congress in New Orleans, La. The Youth Sports Congress is the perfect conference for any youth sports administrator who wants to improve personal and professional skills as well as strengthen their organization, all while maintaining their Certified Youth Sports Administrator (CYSA) credential, or earning the CYSA at the Academy for Youth Sports Administrators. GRPA members can lock in reduced pricing of $449 plus save an additional $50, bringing their registration cost to $399 per person. An additional discount for multiple attendees from the same organization is available. This price is only valid until November 1, but there is an option to “pay later” to lock in the current reduced prices for GRPA members. To take advantage of this limited-time offer, register for the Youth Sports Congress today at https://www.nays.org/congress/registration/ and enter promo code PEACH at checkout. Founded in 1981, the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) is America's leading advocate for positive, safe sports and activities for children. Each year NAYS holds the Youth Sports Congress, a four-day comprehensive educational training discussing cutting edge topics in the field of youth sports. Held in conjunction with the Athletic Business Conference + Expo, the Youth Sports Congress also has a trade show, keynote speakers and receptions to provide attendees opportunities to grow their professional network. Learn more at www.nays.org.

June 16th, 2015 - New Fireworks Law Takes Affect on July 1, 2015

The Georgia Legislature passed HB-110 this year that allows for the sale and use of fireworks in Georgia. This may impact some of you that have 4th of July events in your parks. Alpharetta has put together the attached fact sheet that provides more information on the new law.

June 3rd, 2015 - 2015 GRPA Golf Tournament

The 2015 GRPA State Golf Tournament for youth and adults will be played in Dalton on July 14th at Nob North Golf Course. The entry deadline for the tournament in July 8th. For additional information on the tournament, please see the attached flyer.

May 22nd, 2015 - OUT-OF-SCHOOL TIME EXPO

We are holding the first ever Out-of-School Time Expo in the southeast this August. This all day event will include free CEU sessions, hand-on learning labs, an exhibit hall and four different types of credentials. This event is open to all out-of-school time providers! Those who operate/provide summer camps, afterschool programming, sports leagues, etc. The Learning and Educational tracks will revolve around: Youth Development/Empowerment, HEPA Standards, Laws/Regulations, Safety/Risk Management and Therapeutic/Inclusion. We are currently seeking sponsors and vendors who specialize in program supplies, education, STEM, music/arts, health and wellness, field trip destinations, entertainment providers, food services, and afterschool/summer camp organizations.

April 28th, 2015 - Georgia Youth Sports Administrators Join Inaugural CYSA Leadership Committee

The National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) is proud to announce the formation of an inaugural CYSA Leadership Committee. The committee consists of three Certified Youth Sports Administrators (CYSAs) from Georgia (Lisa Davol from Oconee County, Steve Mellinger from Glynn County, and Pat Sebring from Athens-Clarke County), and other CYSAs from around the world, dedicated to operating youth sports programs with integrity and professionalism. The CYSA Leadership Committee is the first of its kind and brings together youth sports administrators to further promote the need for education and professional standards of those overseeing youth sports programs. The Committee will also help guide policy and standards in youth sports programming and administration. The inaugural CYSA Leadership Committee has 26 founding members from municipal park and recreation agencies, Boys & Girls Clubs and U.S. military youth sports programs. “It is an awesome feeling to be a part of the inaugural CYSA Leadership Committee with many other CYSA professionals,” said Steve Mellinger, program manager at Glynn County Recreation and Parks Department. “Together, we are taking the first steps of our ultimate goal of having at least one CYSA in every community.” Pat Sebring, youth sports program supervisor at Athens Clarke County adds, “I’m excited to be a part of this inaugural committee as I enjoy sharing ideas and learning from others’ experiences.” Youth sports administrators play a crucial role across the youth sports landscape. They are responsible for tasks like upholding the program’s youth sports philosophy, volunteer and parent management, conflict resolution, assessing insurance and risk management, program evaluation and marketing. The CYSA curriculum, offered through the Academy for Youth Sports Administrators, has certified more than 3,000 professionals and educates youth sports administrators on these topics and more. “The CYSA credential sets the standard of professionalism required to provide quality youth sports programs for all participants,” said Lisa Davol, deputy director of programs at Oconee County Parks and Recreation Department. “CYSA professionals acquire a vast knowledge of youth sports principles needed to ensure sports have a positive impact on youth.” Administrators with the CYSA credential are highly regarded because they complete the necessary training and continuing education requirements to fulfill the duties of their position. Training for these professionals is the key to raising the level of professionalism in youth sports and setting the standard for successful youth sports in each community. “The CYSA Leadership Committee is a game changer for today’s youth sports,” said Lisa Licata, director of professional youth sports administrator programs at NAYS. “There needs to be a CYSA in every community – a leader equipped to handle these topics, oversee the community’s entire youth sports operation and enforce a positive youth sport philosophy on behalf of the children. We are happy to have Steve, Pat and Lisa as a part of the CYSA Leadership Committee.” The CYSA Leadership Committee is an initiative of the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS), America's leading advocate for positive and safe sports and activities for children. The non-profit 501(c)(3) organization is based in West Palm Beach, Fla. Today, NAYS offers programs and services for everyone involved in youth sports experiences, including professional administrators, volunteer administrators, volunteer coaches, officials, parents and young athletes. For more information, please visit www.nays.org.

April 24th, 2015 - $3 Million to Develop and Enhance Parks, Outdoor Recreation Facilities in Eight States

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell and Director of the National Park Service Jonathan B. Jarvis today announced $3 million to assist eight cities in constructing and enhancing parks and other outdoor recreation facilities in disadvantaged neighborhoods. Projects range from the renovation of an athletic complex in Detroit, Michigan to construction of a new skate park in Madison, Wisconsin. The grants, part of a new competitive grant program called the Outdoor Recreation Legacy Partnership, are funded through the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). For more than 50 years, the Land and Water Conservation Fund has invested revenue from federal offshore oil and gas royalties into more than 40,000 outdoor recreation facilities and conservation projects in every state. “These eight projects are models of what we have been able to accomplish through the Land and Water Conservation Fund over the past half century,” Jewell said. “We are reinvesting revenues from offshore oil and gas development into parks and open spaces, giving back a portion of what we have taken from our lands and waters. These investments will bring badly needed outdoor spaces and recreational opportunities to urban areas where people – especially young people – will benefit from improved places for healthy outdoor activities.” “Supporting local communities as they create and improve spaces for outdoor recreation through the LWCF Outdoor Recreation Legacy Partnership grants allows the National Park Service to meet our goal of connecting all Americans to spaces where they can enjoy the great outdoors and establish meaningful relationships in their communities and with their public lands,” said Jarvis. Congress created the Outdoor Recreation Legacy Partnership program, administered by the National Park Service, to complement the agency’s existing Land and Water Conservation Fund State and Local Assistance Program. The new program seeks to identify and highlight new ways of providing opportunities for expanding outdoor play in areas with great need, as well as promoting the development of new or enhanced partnerships for outdoor recreation in urban communities across the nation. President Obama and Secretary Jewell have urged Congress to reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which is due to expire this year, and to provide full, permanent funding of the $900 million authorized under the law. The grants announced today are: • Mobile, AL -- $386,525 – The City of Mobile will transform Three Mile Creek from a degraded urban stormwater conveyance into a community asset that will connect diverse neighborhoods and provide new recreation opportunities. The grant will support the initial construction of a planned 12-mile greenway system in a low-income, minority area with limited recreation resources. The .75-mile multi-use trail segment will also include a fitness circuit/parcourse, lighting, benches, and educational/interpretive signage. • Denver, CO -- $250,000 – The City of Denver and private partners will preserve 4.5 acres in the Montbello neighborhood of northeast Denver to provide a unique, natural open-space park in a densely developed residential area, restore habitat for wildlife, and offer low-impact recreation and science education opportunities primarily to youth. The grant will support enhancements to the currently vacant urban site, which is at risk of development, including restoration of native shortgrass prairie and installation of a soft surface walking trail, seating and nature play areas, display gardens, science stations, and way-finding and interpretative signs. • Bridgeport, CT -- $375,000 – The City of Bridgeport and private partners will transform a 4-acre project area comprising Johnson Oak Park and the grounds of the Jettie S. Tisdale School in the East End neighborhood of the city. The neighborhood is predominantly minority and low income and is underserved in terms of recreation resources. The project will address issues of physical safety, criminal activity, and other recreation needs. The grant will support the first phase of planned enhancements including a picnic grove, spray pad, playground equipment, a fitness zone exercise area, and playing fields. • Atlanta, GA -- $280,000 – The City of Atlanta and private partners will create a new 9.2-acre community park adjacent to and inclusive of a portion of Proctor Creek in northwestern Atlanta. The surrounding neighborhoods are minority and low income and lack safe and accessible recreation opportunities. The grant will support the first phase of development of the planned park, which includes installing a 1,400-foot pedestrian and bike trail that will also provide the access to the park; three new adult fitness stations and three children’s play stations; benches; and unstructured spaces for picnicking and play. • Detroit, MI -- $325,000 – The Michigan Department of Natural Resources and private partners will renovate and revitalize the 50+-acre Athletic Complex at Belle Isle Park. The complex is located on the 982-acre island park in the Detroit River, which was designed by Frederick Law Olmstead and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The grant will support rehabilitation of some of the outdoor facilities at the complex, which cannot be used/are underutilized due to their deteriorated condition, including fields for baseball/softball, soccer, lacrosse, and cricket; tennis and basketball courts; a trailhead and discovery playground; and sidewalks connecting the various facilities to each other and the rest of the complex. • Minneapolis, MN -- $500,000 – The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board will develop a new 3.5-acre park on a former industrial site on the Mississippi River in northeastern Minneapolis. Sheridan Memorial Park will be located in an area that is underserved by recreation opportunities and characterized by significant low-income and minority populations, a larger youth population, and above-average rate of negative health issues. The grant will support development of a playground, a multi-purpose field, a picnic area, picnic shelter/restroom building, pathways connecting to a regional trail network, and an environmentally restored riverfront. • Portland, OR -- $500,000 – The City of Portland, Verde, and private partners will develop a 25-acre park on a former brownfield in the Cully neighborhood of northeast Portland. The neighborhood, one of Portland’s larger and more populous neighborhoods, is predominantly minority and low-income and has limited outdoor recreation opportunities as compared to other regional areas. The grant will restore habitat and support development of an accessible playground, walking trail with exercise equipment, scenic overlooks, off leash dog area, Intertribal Gathering Garden (open to the public), and a youth soccer field at Thomas Cully Park. • Madison, WI -- $295,308 – The City of Madison will continue re-development and revitalization of a vacant/underutilized former industrial area by constructing its first skatepark at the newly-opened Central Park in Madison’s Near East Side. Youth and young adults have played an active role in the design and realization of this project, which will offer a legal, safe and attractive destination for people of all skate skill levels. Construction of the 20,000-square foot skatepark will also include necessary support facilities such as lighting, walkways, landscaping, fencing, benches, an underdrain system, and drinking fountain.

April 14th, 2015 - 2015 GRPA Lifeguard Competition

The 2015 GRPA Lifeguard Competition will be held on July 20th at Old Salem Park on Lake Oconee. For information on the competition, see the attached. Multiple teams are allowed from GRPA agencies so register them today!

April 1st, 2015 - SHOW YOUR GRPA PRIDE!!!!!!

Don't be the last GRPA member to get your "Property of GRPA" t-shirt or sweatshirt. Sizes are available from adult small through XXXL. Simply fill out the attached order form and send it in to the GRPA office by mail, fax, or e-mail and your shirts will be mailed out to you.

March 6th, 2015 - GEORGIA YOUTH SPORTS ADMINISTRATORS EARN PROFESSIONAL CERTIFICATION

Acie Farrey, Cyndee Bonacci, Rickey Gilliard, Patricia Sebring and Darrell Holmes from Georgia recently joined recreation professionals from across the country by successfully completing the Academy for Youth Sports Administrators online program. By completing the Academy, these individuals earned the professional title of Certified Youth Sports Administrator (CYSA). “The Academy was great and very informative,” said Farrey, a therapeutic recreation specialist with Cobb County P.A.R.K.S. in Marietta, Ga. “I learned a lot of things about managing sports that I can use with our Special Olympics program.” Also earning the CYSA credential were Gilliard, the sports director for the Liberty County Recreation Department; Sebring, a youth sports supervisor for Athens-Clarke County Leisure Services; Holmes, a facilities manager for Rockdale County; and Bonacci, a volunteer in Lawrenceville. The Academy for Youth Sports Administrators is a comprehensive certification program that offers cutting-edge information on critical topics for youth sports administrators today. The Academy’s primary goal is to provide attendees with a foundation, tools and resources needed to positively impact the youth sports experience for all children in their communities. Some of the topics covered at the Academy are youth sports philosophy, professional development, volunteer management, child abuse and bullying prevention, parent management, conflict resolution, insurance and risk management, program evaluation and marketing. The professional youth sports administrator is charged with ensuring that every child has a quality youth sports experience. It is essential that every community have at least one CYSA who understands the core/foundations of positive youth sports so that regardless of locale, youth sports are guided by a similar, positive philosophy. The Academy is one of many programs provided by the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS), which is America's leading advocate for positive and safe sports and activities for children. The non-profit 501(c)(3) organization is based in West Palm Beach, Fla. Today, NAYS offers programs and services for everyone involved in youth sports experiences, including professional administrators, volunteer administrators, volunteer coaches, officials, parents and young athletes. For more information, please visit www.nays.org.

March 2nd, 2015 - Georgia SportsTurf Managers Association offers Free Spring Field Day

Please see the attached brochure for more information.

February 27th, 2015 - Georgia Department of Public Health Offers Grant - Coaching Boys Into Men

The Department of Public Health (DPH) with the support of funding from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is issuing this electronic Request for Awards to establish a contract with parks and recreation departments and high school athletic programs to implement Coaching Boys Into Men, a program designed to promote respectful behavior among its players and help prevent relationship abuse, harassment, and sexual assault. DPH’s Sexual Violence Prevention in the Office of Adolescent and School Health/Chronic Disease Prevention Section will provide oversight. The awards are open to the athletic divisions of governmental Parks and Recreation departments and high school athletic departments in the state of Georgia. The deadline to apply for the grant is Thursday, March 12th. For additional information, please see the attachments.

February 27th, 2015 - Harlem Globetrotters Invading Atlanta

The Harlem Globetrotters will be in Atlanta at the Phillips Arena on March 7th and at the Gwinnett Center on March 14th. Attached are ticket order forms for your teams to both of the games.

January 30th, 2015 - Schedule Released for Swimming/Track Orientation Meetings

Per the rules and regulations included in the GRPA Athletic Manual, any agency wishing to participate in the state track meet or the state swim meet is required to attend one of the orientation meetings. While it is mandatory for a staff person to attend, it is also recommended that your team’s coach also attend to make them aware of the GRPA rules.

January 27th, 2015 - Playground Maintenance Safety Training

Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation Department will again be partnering with Clemson University and the US Play Coalition to bring the Playground Maintenance Safety Training course to Georgia. For more information, please see the attached form.

January 26th, 2015 - Marketing Roundtable Conference Call

The NRPA Administrator's Network will be hosting a free Marketing Roundtable on Thursday, January 29th at 11:00 a.m.. Call in numbers and access code information is below: Phone number : 712-432-1500 Access Code : 654950# The call will be facilitated by Michael Kalvort and Jessica Ireland of the Virginia Beach Parks and Recreation Department.

January 5th, 2015 - Extra Copies of the 2015 GRPA Athletic Manual

If you would like additional copies of the manual for your staff, the order form is attached. Complete the form and submit it to the GRPA office along with payment.

December 18th, 2014 - Gwinnett Youth Sports Expo

This year’s event is free to attend, but you still must register as spaces are limited. You can register by going to www.gwinnettparks.com and clicking online registration. There is still time to become a sponsor or vendor: Sponsor - Premium location and most exposure! only $500 and a silent auction item. (Returning sponsors will receive a 20% discount.) With your sponsorship, you’ll receive a premium booth placement in the Expo Exhibit Hall plus company name and/or logo in media releases and promotional materials. Online registration code: EXPO20155 Vendor only $100 and a silent auction item. (Returning vendors will receive a 20% discount.) Vendors will receive a booth space in the Expo Exhibit Hall and a program listing. Online registration code: EXPO20154

November 19th, 2014 - Roswell's Rain Gardens Offer Innovative Solution to Water Pollution

We’ve all seen water rushing across a parking lot after it rains, and we’ve probably not thought much about it. But stormwater flow across hard surfaces like parking lots and roadways is a key way that pollutants enter our local waterways. And it’s one of the main reasons the City of Roswell has built innovative structures called “rain gardens” to improve the water quality of Crossville Creek, a stream that runs through Roswell Area Park. A rain garden is a shallow depression or basin in the ground that is designed to capture and filter stormwater runoff and the pollutants it carries. Rain gardens are planted with deep-rooted native plants, grasses, and shrubs to remove sediments and pollutants before they enter our groundwater and waterways. “Rain gardens mimic the natural absorption and pollutant removal that happens in a forest, meadow, prairie or other natural area,” said Alice Champagne, Water Resources Manager for the City of Roswell. “It’s a low-tech, effective, sustainable, and aesthetically beautiful way to safeguard our waterways.” The City targeted four areas within Roswell Area Park because many of the park's impervious areas (parking lots) drain directly into Crossville Creek. The creek is included on the Federal Clean Water Act's list of impaired waterways in Georgia for fecal coliform bacteria. "When we found out Crossville Creek was impaired, we knew we had to come up with a way to protect that waterway from further damage. We also wanted to reduce the volume and velocity of stormwater contributing to stream bank erosion and flooding," said Champagne. "Rain gardens are called a 'Best Management Practice, or BMP' in our line of work because they address all those concerns quite effectively." The total project was just under $200,000, which included a partial grant from the federal government for 55 percent of the cost. Roswell’s Water Resources Division plans to continue to monitor downstream of Roswell Area Park and compare new data to previous data. In addition, rain gardens will be incorporated into future City projects wherever appropriate. "We're placing informational signs at the rain gardens to help educate our residents and visitors," said Champagne. "We’re excited for the community to see these gardens and the improvements they will make. We can all be proud of this long-lasting solution.

November 18th, 2014 - Tim Coley Receives 2014 GRPA Mike Daniel Award

During the recent GRPA Annual Conference & Trade Show, Henry County Director Tim Coley received the 2014 GRPA Mike Daniel Excellence in Programming Award. Mr. Coley holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Recreation Administration from West Georgia and has worked in the parks and recreation field for 29 years; 11 years as a Director for Henry County Parks and Recreation, 7 years as Youth Athletic Supervisor for Forsyth County Parks and Recreation Department, 7 years as Athletic Supervisor for Clayton County Parks and Recreation Department and 4 years as Intramural Grad Assistant at West Georgia College while attending college. Mr. Coley returned home to Henry County where he grew up, and to the County Parks and Recreation Department where he played and later worked part-time while attending High School and College. Mr. Coley has been a member of Georgia Recreation and Parks Association since 1987. Under his leadership, Henry County Parks and Recreation has hosted the GRPA Day Camp Workshop, District Meetings and District Athletic Tournaments. He has attended Grounds Day, Annual Conferences and participates in both District and State Awards. Programming and Special Events boomed when Mr. Coley became Director of Henry County Parks and Recreation. He helped increase tourism with 52 various tournaments, Military Display Tours and the Traveling Vietnam Wall Display; unveiled a unique Veteran’s Wall of Honor Monument that sits atop a hill at Heritage Park, opened a Military Museum and formed a Special Event Division. Mr. Coley also acquired a software registration system and developed the idea of Henry County’s award-winning calendar. He supports the Therapeutic Division in their award-winning Special Olympics and Wheelchair sports programs. Thinking outside the box, he also included extreme sports such as Inline Hockey, BMX, Tennis and Paintball. The idea of having Day Camps, Teen Camps and Sports Camps increasing to five locations, originated from Mr. Coley. Mr. Coley believes the Therapeutic Recreation program is one of the Department’s best kept secrets. The department consistently wins state awards for the teams and the programs while giving each participant a sense of self-achievement and confidence as well as physical fitness. Mr. Coley helped to secure a van to transport special needs participants to events. Mr. Coley supports many Therapeutic special events including a Special Olympic Invitational Softball Tournament, Special Populations Day at the Fair and numerous fund-raisers. The Special Olympic Program features year-round sports training and competitions that include alpine skiing, equestrian, athletics, aquatics, basketball, bocce, bowling, cycling, fans in the stands, golf, kayaking, soccer, softball, tennis, volleyball and sailing. Under his leadership, special events went from nearly non-existent to offering a special event monthly. He booked the popular series of outdoor movies on a 60-foot screen, Fall Festival, Flashlight Easter Egg Hunt, Memorial Day Services, Veterans Day Services, Zac Brown Band Inaugural Concert for the Heritage Event Center, Simply Southern Jubilee and BBQ Competition, Battle of Atlanta, Folktales and Moonlight, Christmas Festival, Rock-n-Roll Chili Bowl, Drive In Movie, Haunted Trail and Halloween Town. In July, the Department held the Georgia Independence Day Festival “Where It’s Always July 4th, 1776.” The festival was held over two days and included re-enactors who portrayed people from the year 1776, and were first to hear of America gaining its independence from the British. The highlight of the event is the big fireworks display. Mr. Coley’s dedication and commitment to his profession are evident in every program and facility he helped design. His creativity, sense of humor, charismatic personality and passion for people only adds to his ability to effectively work with staff, volunteers and citizen groups, as well as government and business leaders in the community. He administers parks, grounds, recreation, cultural affairs and community services. He has developed a vast knowledge of politics and created strong partnerships in the community. Mr. Coley claims his greatest source of pride is his staff and he boasts that they are the people who give up personal and family time in the evenings, weekends and holidays to work so that our citizens can have recreation opportunities. His motto, “We work when people play.” Mr. Coley is most deserving of GRPA’s Mike Daniel Award because of his enthusiasm and professional contributions to the field which were major traits of the award’s namesake, Mike Daniel.

November 17th, 2014 - Detrick Stanford Named 2014 GRPA Distinguished Professional of the Year

The highest award given to any professional member of the Georgia Recreation and Park Association (GRPA) is the Distinguished Professional Award. At the recent GRPA Annual Conference & Trade Show, Clayton County Director Detrick Stanford was the recipient if this prestigious award for 2014. Mr. Stanford has been in the parks and recreation profession for over 17 years. He received his Bachelor of Science Degree from Georgia Southern University and Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Troy State University. He also currently serves as Policy and Planning Liaison for the Clayton County Board of Commissioners and has held positions as Financial Administrator in DeKalb County, Georgia Parks Bond/Greenspace Office. As a committed advocate for the leisure services profession, Detrick serves in a myriad of ways, including the following positions: member of the NRPA Board of Directors since 2009; NRPA Chair-elect; 2012-2013 President of GRPA; served on the Board of Regents of the Supervisors’ Management School 2010-2013; 2014 Chair of the NRPA Congress Program Committee; and currently serves on the following NRPA Board Committees – Finance and Executive Committees. Detrick has been active with the National Recreation and Park Ethnic Minority Society (NRPEMS) for over 12 years. Most recently, Detrick is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated, which is a distinguished civic-service organization that was founded in 1906 on the campus of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. Detrick’s professional and community achievements and recognitions are plentiful and well deserved. While working for DeKalb County Government, he was awarded the 2003 Innovative Programming Award, where he served as Special Services Manager. When working for DNR-State Parks and Historic Sites Division Detrick was credited for the successful development and implementation of the agency’s Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Plan (2005-2010). As Director of the Clayton County Parks and Recreation, Detrick successfully led his department through CAPRA national accreditation, which reviews 144 standards that are nationwide best practices. Detrick was selected among his peers as a Regent to NRPA’s Supervisors’ Management School where he provided instruction to supervisors and managers from across the country. Most recently, Detrick was accepted into the first Black Collegiate Fraternity (Alpha Phi Alpha). Mr. Stanford is the consummate professional that serves at the local, state, and national levels. He is admired and respected by his staff and members of the state association. The entire GRPA membership congratulations him on this well-deserved award!

October 30th, 2014 - Schedule Released for 2014 Presidents Assembly

The schedule is now set for next month's President's Assembly. All meeting and housing information can be found on the attached schedule.

October 21st, 2014 - Volleyball State Invitational

Please come and enjoy a tournament full of fun and great competition as the City of Bremen Parks and Recreation Department hosts the State Invitational volleyball tournament! November 21 - 22

October 20th, 2014 - GRPA District 3 Awards

In 1995 Georgia Recreation and Parks Association Third District began recognizing and honoring professional individuals, agencies and volunteers that have rendered significant service and have made worthwhile contributions to the field of recreation, parks and leisure services in their communities. The GRPA Third District encompasses 33 southwest Georgia counties. Each year there are between 29 - 33 member agencies and over 115 individual members. In 2011 and 2013 no awards were presented as the District elected to begin to present awards every other year. On September 26, 2014 in Columbus, GA the District with over 160 members and distinguished guests present,; honored several volunteers, individuals, and agencies for their time, energy and efforts to recreation, parks and leisure in their community’s for the year. For their support and efforts on behalf of recreation, parks and leisure service opportunities Special Recognition Awards were presented to Suzan Prince, Valdosta-Lowndes County Recreation Authority; Midtown, Inc. Columbus Parks and Recreation Department; and Brockey Brock, retired. Volunteer Award Recipients were Barbara Justice and Julie Wagenti, Columbus Parks and Recreation Department and L.L. Litman, Albany Recreation and Parks Department. The Administrative Support Award recipient was Yvette Roberts, Albany Recreation and Parks Department. Receiving the 2012 D.L. Lastinger “Parks Maintenance” Award was Tommy Groce, Columbus Recreation and Parks Department, Population Category 20,001 and more. The recipient of the Mary Roth “Programmers” Award was Lisa Castile, Columbus Parks & Recreation Department, Population Category 20,001 and more; while the recipients of theWilliams “Cut” Edwards “Athletics” Programming Award were Rusty Hunter, Terrell County Recreation Department, Population Category 20,000 and less and Morris Hicks, Albany Recreation and Parks Department, Population Category 20,001 and more. The Jim “Buck” Goff Distinguished Professional Award went to Craig Potter, Cusseta-Chattahoochee County Parks and Recreation Department, Population Category 20,000 and less and Holli Browder, Columbus Parks and Recreation Department, Population Category 20,001 and more. Agencies awards were presented to Dooly County RecreationDepartment, Agency Director is Jacob Joiner in the Population Category 20,000 & Under; Grady county Parks and Recreation Department, Agency Director is Becky Bracewell in the Population Category 20,001 – 70,000 and the Valdosta-Lowndes County Parks & Recreation Authority, Agency Director is George Page in the Population Category 70,001 & Over. For a complete listing of all award recipients in every award category since 1995 visit the GRPA Third District web page at grpa.org.

August 28th, 2014 - GRPA Silent Auction at GRPA Annual Conference

As we approach conference we are excited to be preparing for our annual Silent Auction. As a reminder all proceeds from the auction support our Leadership GRPA program. This program is vital to our members and future leaders of GRPA. This is where you come in! WE NEED ITEMS. Please talk with your vendors, customers, supporters, etc. and donate items for the Silent Auction. Our goal for this year is quite EXTRAORDINARY as we would like to support both a Leadership I and II class for 2015. Attached to this page is a letter to assist you. If you have any questions, please contact our Silent Auction Chair, Michelle Patrick, with the City of Acworth at 770-917-1234 or mpatrick@acworth.org. Thank you in advance for your support!

August 21st, 2014 - City of Woodstock Initiates Trail Watch Volunteer Program

The City of Woodstock is starting a Trail Watch volunteer program that will add an additional layer of safety on its trails. Woodstock Trail Watch volunteers promote safety and appropriate trail use by providing information and assistance to all trail users. They observe and document trail safety issues requiring attention, serve as a positive presence on Woodstock trails and assist the Woodstock Parks and Recreation and Woodstock Police Departments to keep Woodstock’s trails safe and well maintained. Woodstock Parks and Recreation Director, Preston Pooser says “the Trail Watch Volunteers will assist the City of Woodstock in keeping our 20+ miles of trails safe and enjoyable for all. Volunteers, ages 18 and older, will be trained in first aid, CPR, trail etiquette and reporting procedures. They will not be asked to intervene in potentially dangerous situations, only report them”. Pooser adds, “It’s like “Neighborhood Watch” on our trails. Trail Watch is a volunteer program in which hikers, cyclists, skaters and walkers assist the City in monitoring Woodstock’s trails and parks. Volunteers are identified by a brightly colored vest or t-shirt and a City issued ID card. They serve as “extra eyes and ears” on the trails”. Trail Watch volunteers report safety hazards, suspicious activity and assist trail users. Trail Watch volunteers must be 18 years of age, have a successful background check and attend a mandatory 2-hour training class. For individuals who don’t currently have first aid and CPR Certifications, a full 8-hour course will be offered that will include first aid and CPR. Upcoming Trail Watch Academy Classes are Tuesday August 26, 2014 for individuals with current first aid and CPR certifications. A full 8-hour Trail Watch Academy will be held on Saturday September 6, 2014 for individuals who need to complete their CPR and first aid certifications to participate. Classes are held at Magnolia Hall, 108 Arnold Mill Road, Building C, in Woodstock. Anyone interested in applying for Trail Watch Program and those wanting to sign up for the Trail Watch Academy, are encouraged to call the Woodstock Parks and Recreation Department at (770) 517-6788.

August 14th, 2014 - Rabun Bark Park Opens

Rabun County Recreation Department opened a new Dog Park on August 2, 2014. The Grand Opening of the 10,000 sq. ft. park was a huge success, with approximately 40 dogs and their owners on hand to enjoy the day. The park offers different obstacles for dogs to play and exercise with, a grooming table, fresh water, a waste pick-up station, and benches for owners to rest on. A walking trail also encircles the interior of the park. “The Bark Park was constructed in a vacant corner of one of our Multi-purpose fields,” said Roy Quilliams, Director of Rabun County Recreation Department. “There was very minimal cost involved, as we used existing fence from an old baseball field to enclose the dog park. A local veterinarian donated the equipment inside the park and we have secured several other sponsors to help with operating costs.” Several local pet groomers, businesses, and a veterinarian were on hand to promote the park and answer questions, and Paws For Life, a local humane shelter, had a dog adoption. Hot Dogs were provided to everyone by local restaurant Alpha Dog, and we even had a dunking booth for the kids to enjoy.

August 13th, 2014 - CPRP Prep Course & CYSA Academy to be Offered during 2014 Conference

This year's GRPA Annual Conference is offering more than the traditional slate of educational sessions to delegates. On Monday, November 3rd, a CPRP (Certified Parks and Recreation Professional) Prep course will be offered at the convention center for anyone interested in obtaining their professional certification. Roswell's Katie Troline will lead the class through all of the information needed to pass the certification exam. There is an additional charge for this class and it can be found on the delegate registration form. On Wednesday, November 5th, a CYSA (Certified Youth Sports Administrator) Academy will be offered. If your position involves administering a youth sports program in your community, this course is a must. NAYS' Lisa Licata will be teaching the class, once again. There is also an additional charge for this class. The conference delegate registration form can be found on the GRPA home page and under the annual conference tab.

August 6th, 2014 - Adapted Sports Training, Education and Certification Conference

The ASTECC Conference will provide the opportunity to obtain multiple sport certifications over the three day span. Each certification course is taught by a highly trained professional in the sport field. Transportation will be provided to the training venues. Participants are required to bring a laptop.

July 30th, 2014 - Disc Golf Coming to Spalding County's Wyomia Tyus Olympic Park

Spalding County Parks and Recreation is proud to announce that the Griffin Disc Golf Association has committed to raising $18,000 for the construction of a Championship Disc Golf Course at Wyomia Tyus Olympic Park. Liberty Technology is the first sponsor of the Disc Golf Course the Company’s founder, Mr. Ben Johnson, presented a check to fund a hole for the Course. The Griffin Disc Golf Association was founded by Mr. Jason Stowell and Mr. Kyle Wooddall, two local, passionate disc golf players. For more information on supporting this fantastic project, you may contact the Founders at griffindiscgolfassociation@gmail.com. Pictured in attached photo: Mr. Ben Johnson- Founder of Liberty Technology, Spalding County Commissioner Raymond Ray, Mr. Jason Stowell-Co-Founder/Treasurer Griffin Disc Golf Association, Spalding County Recreation Superintendent Kelly Leger and Spalding County Parks Superintendent TJ Imberger.

July 29th, 2014 - Gwinnett County Lifeguards Win GRPA State Competition for Third Straight Year

For the third year in a row, Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation (GCPR) took first place at the annual Georgia Recreation and Park Association State Lifeguarding Competition held on July 21 in Greene County. Six lifeguards from various GCPR aquatic centers earned spots on the team after proving their lifeguard skills and abilities during the tryouts. Virginia Brinkley, Christina Wang, Alex Wang, Brad Miller, Stephen Brinkley and Victor Barr studied lifeguard materials, swam and conditioned throughout the summer to prepare for the competition. There were 13 teams from across the state competing for the title. The competition consisted of several events evaluating teamwork, athletic ability and lifeguarding knowledge. The GCPR lifeguards dominated the competition by winning five out of the seven events and placing second in the other two. Overall, the team acquired 45 points to secure a first place victory while the second place team had 18 points. The team won the swim relay event with the fastest time, and secured another first with a perfect score during a critical incident event applying their lifeguard skills during a realistic emergency simulation. The team also placed first during the rescue paddle board, rescue relay and triathlon events. The team was supervised and coached by Aquatics Coordinator Christine Greenfield and Aquatics Supervisor Jason Cutchins. “We are extremely proud of the lifeguard team for their victory at state. Our lifeguard team takes great pride in their training and skill execution and they were excited to use it in a competition setting,” said Greenfield.

July 10th, 2014 - 2014 UGA Turfgrass Research Field Day

The UGA College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences has announced plans for their 2014 field day to be held at the UGA-Griffin Campus. This field day is designed for both beginners and veterans interested in turfgrass management, including those who work for golf courses; parks and recreation departments; school athletics and grounds maintenance; professional lawn care services; landscaping; garden centers; sod production; and institutional grounds maintenance.

June 12th, 2014 - Georgia Food Bank Assoc. Promotes Statewide Summer Feeding Program for Georgia's Children in Need

ATLANTA – June 4, 2014 – Sixty-three percent of school-aged children in Georgia rely on national school meal programs to provide them with a daily nutrition throughout the school year. Of those children, nearly 85 percent do not have access to nutritious meals and snacks in the summer. In fact, Georgia ranks 21st in the nation in terms of summer nutrition participation. To promote the statewide summer lunch program, “Feeding for a Promising Future – No Kid Hungry Campaign,” the Georgia Food Bank Association (GFBA) and the Arby’s Foundation, the charitable arm of Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc., will kick off the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) in partnership with Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation at Lucky Shoals Park in Norcross on Tuesday, June 10, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. with these speakers: • First Lady of Georgia, Sandra Deal • Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning Commissioner Bobby Cagle • Georgia Department of Education Nutrition Consultant Paige Holland • Gwinnett County District Two Commissioner Lynette Howard • National Recreation and Park Association Incoming Board Chair Detrick Stanford • Arby’s Foundation Executive Director Kate Atwood • Retired Atlanta Falcon MVP Chuck Smith • USDA Deputy Regional Administrator Erin Swanson-Hall • Atlanta Dream team members “Child hunger is most common, and most severe, during the summer months,” said Danah Craft – executive director, the Georgia Food Bank Association. “The vision of the Summer Food Service Program is to increase the number of children served summer meals throughout the state. Increasing participation and feeding more children in need this summer will help us reach our goal of ending child hunger in Georgia. We are grateful to corporate partners like Arby’s Foundation and Share our Strength for their support.” Since 2013, through the support of the Arby’s Foundation, 21 community and faith based organizations as well as school nutrition departments have received grant funds totaling $662,555 that are administered through GFBA to help increase access and participation in summer feeding for children across the state. SFSP and Seamless Summer Options (SSO) are federally funded U.S. Department of Agriculture programs that are administered by Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning, and its counterpart, the Georgia Department of Education: School Nutrition Programs. The GFBA and its seven regional food bank members partner with 2,300 pantries around the state to distribute more than 103 million pounds of food annually to food insecure families. In addition to that work, it promotes access to the summer feeding programs that serve free meals and snacks to children from one to 18 years of age while school is out of session. Summer feeding sites, located in low-income communities where at least half of the children are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals, can serve all children for free through these programs. Schools, local governments, and private non-profits – including faith-based organizations – can serve summer food at locations where children gather during the summer such as congregations, schools, summer camps, and youth centers. This year, in an effort to have more hungry children in Georgia fed, the GFBA and their partners are implementing amplified communications regarding summer meals and how to access them, across the state. In addition, new locations for feeding sites will provide increased capacity to serve more children. This summer, the expansion of mobile feeding sites will provide more healthy lunches in remote locations statewide. Parents can text “foodga” to 877877 to find a site or visit georgiafoodbankassociation.org for a map. Site locations will be updated weekly throughout the month of June. The June 10 event is the first of three statewide kickoff events for the SFSP which will be held on June 10, 19, and 26, and are a joint endeavor of Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning, the Georgia Department of Education, the Georgia Food Bank Association, The Southeast United Dairy Industry Association and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. For more information, visit the GFBA website or contact michele.chivore@georgiafoodbankassociation.org, (678) 365-4278.

June 6th, 2014 - State Event Information - GRPA State Adult Tennis and Youth/Adult Golf Information

May 27th, 2014 - City of Roswell Announced as 2014 National Gold Medal Award Finalist

ASHBURN, VA., May 23, 2014 – The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration (AAPRA), in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), is pleased to announce the finalists for the 2014 National Gold Medal Awards for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management. This year’s proud sponsor of the Gold Medal Awards program is Musco Lighting LLC. Founded in 1965, the Gold Medal Awards program honors communities in the U.S. that demonstrate excellence in parks and recreation through long-range planning, resource management, volunteerism, environmental stewardship, program development, professional development and agency recognition. Applications are separated into seven classes, with five classes based on population, one class for armed forces recreation communities and the State Park System Class awarded during odd-numbered years. Agencies are judged on their ability to address the needs of those they serve through the collective energies of citizens, staff and elected officials. Four finalists in each class are chosen to compete for grand honors each year. The 2014 Gold Medal finalists are: Class I (population 400,001 and over)  Chicago Park District, Illinois  Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation, Georgia  Maryland-National Capital Park and Planing Commission, Maryland  Mesa Parks, Recreation and Commercial Facilities, Arizona Class II (population 150,001 – 400,000)  Arlington Parks and Recreation, Texas  Bakersfield Recreation and Parks Department, California  Henderson Public Works, Parks and Recreation, Nevada  Plano Parks and Recreation Department, Texas ¬ Class III (population 75,001 – 150,000)  Allen Parks and Recreation, Texas  Carmel Clay Parks and Recreation, Indiana  Roswell Recreation, Parks, Historic and Cultural Affairs Department, Georgia  St. George Leisure Services Department, Utah Class IV (population 30,001 – 75,000)  Carol Stream Park District, Illinois  Eau Claire Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department, Wisconsin  Kettering Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts, Ohio  Willamalene Parks and Recreation District, Illinois Class V (population less than 30,000)  Frankfort Square Park District, Illinois  Lafayette Recreation Department, Colorado  Middleton Public Lands, Recreation and Forestry, Wisconsin  Oak Brook Park District, Illinois Armed Forces Recreation  Fort Carson, Colorado  Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center , California  Naval Air Station Pensacola, Florida  Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Georgia A panel of five park and recreation professionals reviews and judges all application materials. Judges are chosen for their considerable experience and knowledge in parks and recreation on both the local and national levels. This year’s finalists will compete for Grand Plaque Award honors this summer, and the six Grand Plaque recipients will be announced live during the 2014 NRPA Congress in Charlotte, North Carolina, October 14-16. For more information on the Gold Medal Awards, visit www.nrpa.org/goldmedal or www.aapra.org. The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration is a non-profit organization founded to advance knowledge related to the administration of recreation and parks; to encourage scholarly efforts by both practitioners and educators that would enhance the practice of park and recreation administration; to promote broader public understanding of the importance of parks and recreation to the public good; and, to conduct research, publish scholarly papers and sponsor seminars related to the advancement of park and recreation administration. For more information, visit www.aapra.org. The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing park, recreation and conservation efforts that enhance quality of life for all people. Through its network of 40,000 recreation and park professionals and citizens, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit www.nrpa.org. For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit www.parksandrecreation.org. Musco Lighting, LLC is a company that has specialized in lighting systems for sports and large areas for more than 30 years. Musco has pioneered dramatic improvements in energy efficiency and affordable ways to control wasted spill light and glare. Permanent and temporary lighting services range from neighborhood fields to NASCAR super speedways. For more information, visit www.musco.com.

May 23rd, 2014 - Gwinnett Co. Parks and Recreation Announced as 2014 National Gold Medal Award Finalist

(Lawrenceville, Ga., May 23, 2014) – The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration, in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association, is pleased to announce Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation as a finalists for the 2014 National Gold Medal Awards for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management. This year’s proud sponsor of the Gold Medal Awards program is Musco Lighting LLC. Founded in 1965, the Gold Medal Awards program honors communities in the U.S. that demonstrate excellence in parks and recreation through long-range planning, resource management, volunteerism, environmental stewardship, program development, professional development and agency recognition. Applications are separated into seven classes, with five classes based on population, one class for armed forces recreation communities and the State Park System Class awarded on odd numbered years. Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation, which last won the National Gold Medal Award in 2008, is a finalist in the Class I (population 400,001 and over) category. Gwinnett’s park system operates 46 parks and facilities and provides quality recreation and leisure opportunities that serve all ages, interests and levels of physical ability. Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation offers a wide variety of classes, camps, programs, and sports leagues to satisfy nearly every one of Gwinnett’s 859,000 residents. Agencies are judged on their ability to address the needs of those they serve through the collective energies of citizens, staff and elected officials. Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation joins three other finalists in the class that will compete for grand honors this year. “We’ve always known that our park system is top-notch, so it is satisfying to receive affirmation that Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation is considered one of the best in the country,” said Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners Chairman Charlotte Nash. “We have a little something for everyone in our system.” A panel of five park and recreation professionals reviews and judges all application materials. Judges are chosen for their considerable experience and knowledge in parks and recreation on both the local and national levels. This year’s finalists will compete for Grand Plaque Award honors this summer, and the six Grand Plaque recipients will be announced live during the 2014 NRPA Congress in Charlotte, North Carolina, Oct. 14-16. Nash said, “I am proud of the staff and volunteers who work so hard to offer great services to receive this well-deserved recognition and am anxious to learn the final results of the awards competition this fall.” For more information on the Gold Medal Awards, visit www.nrpa.org/goldmedal or www.aapra.org. Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation provides high quality, broad-based parks, facilities, programs and services to create a sense of community, enable a safe and secure environment and enhance Gwinnett's quality of life. The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration is a non-profit organization founded to advance knowledge related to the administration of recreation and parks; to encourage scholarly efforts by both practitioners and educators that would enhance the practice of park and recreation administration; to promote broader public understanding of the importance of parks and recreation to the public good; and, to conduct research, publish scholarly papers and sponsor seminars related to the advancement of park and recreation administration. For more information, visit www.aapra.org. The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing park, recreation and conservation efforts that enhance quality of life for all people. Through its network of 40,000 recreation and park professionals and citizens, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit www.nrpa.org. For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit www.parksandrecreation.org. Musco Lighting, LLC is a company that has specialized in lighting systems for sports and large areas for more than 30 years. Musco has pioneered dramatic improvements in energy efficiency and affordable ways to control wasted spill light and glare. Permanent and temporary lighting services range from neighborhood fields to NASCAR super speedways. For more information, visit www.musco.com.

May 20th, 2014 - GRPA Announces New Partnership with Stone Mountain Park

GRPA is excited to announce a new partnership with Stone Mountain Park that will allow GRPA members to purchase admission tickets into the park at a 30% discount. Stone Mountain Park has much more to offer than just the laser show and is a great outing for the family. It is even a great destination for summer camp day trips. To get more information or to order your tickets, click on the Stone Mountain box on the right side of the GRPA home page just below the Quick Links.

May 16th, 2014 - City of Alpharetta Gets Proactive with New Gun Law

The "Safe Carry Protection Act of 2014" (H.B 60) was approved by the Georgia legislature this year and was signed into law by Governor Deal last month. The law will take effect on July 1, 2014 but the City of Alpharetta is not waiting until July 1st to start educating the participants in their parks and recreation programs. Alpharetta's Recreation Director, Mike Perry and Public Safety Director, Gary George collaborated to create a fact sheet on what the users of their parks and recreation facilities should know about the new law. It attempts to address some of the common questions and misconceptions about current firearms legislation and the recent changes brought about by H.B. 60. A PDF of the document is attached to this story. Please contact the GRPA office if you would like to have it in Word format so you can adapt it to your own community.

April 29th, 2014 - PRORAGIS Workshop to be Offered in Georgia

Did you ever wonder how your capital expenditures differed from an agency similar to yours? Had you ever considered whether your community center space was adequate based upon national standards, or if the number of centers your agency provided was appropriate for the number of citizens? Once your Proragis data is completed, you will be able to compare your facilities with comparable agencies that have similar demographics and acquire valuable reporting alternatives. For those not acquainted with Proragis, participants will learn the benefits that can be gained by being a part of a nationwide professional effort that will document how public parks and recreation services are being provided. Information will be shared on how to be a part of this exciting effort via a step by step instructional format conducted by experienced practitioners. The session will also provide hands on information to those that have already begun the process in their agencies but have specific questions before they complete the process. Participants will also be given information on the new improvements being made to the functionality of the data base and perhaps how best to use the data for the agency’s greatest benefit. Don’t face it alone! Join hundreds of others that have decided to get the assistance of departments from all over the country to help communicate the needs of your department! Pursue Proragis.

April 29th, 2014 - Class B/C State Track Meet Information Released

The 2014 GRPA Class B/C State Track Meet will be held in Carrollton on Friday, May 2nd and Saturday, May 3rd. The information on the state meet is attached.

April 25th, 2014 - How Gamification can be leveraged to engage your community

Gamification is one of the hottest trends occurring in the technology space and many organizations are looking at various ways to deploy it within their company or community. Gamification involves applying game design thinking to non-game applications to make them more fun and engaging, take health for example, this is not a game but if one applies competition or challenges to activities related to improving overall health it can become fun. If one can then socially share that and connect with friends it becomes even more engaging. It’s a trend that can create sustained engagement, not just a one-time visit but daily or even hourly interactions. Recently The Georgia Municipal Association and Georgia Recreation and Park Association launched Active Georgia. This is meant to be a fun challenge to determine the most active city in the state of Georgia, a form of gamification. It’s meant to socially highlight everything active within ones community and connect individuals and families with those activities while also rewarding both the individual and the city. Some of the awards the cities will earn are outdoor fitness stations and nutritional product that can be used at future events. There are also prizes for top participants such as $500 in cash split between the top three point earners. The goal with something like this is obviously participation but to also be a platform that cities can use to collect insights on their community. There is a tremendous amount of corporate and federal funding for community improvements and many of these initiatives require details on data. The great thing about gamification is it can provide you with those details. If you are still interested in getting your city involved in this initiative be sure to sign up at https://www.cmecompete.com/communities/see-walk-cities/ and create your city team to not only compete for prizes but to collect data. If you have more interest in applying it directly to your community, please email info@cmecompete.com.

April 24th, 2014 - Class A State Track Meet Information Released

The 2014 GRPA Class A State Track Meet will be held in Augusta on Friday, May 9th and Saturday, May 10th. The information on the state meet is attached.

April 24th, 2014 - 2014 Georgia State Games Registration is now Open!

Dear All Georgia State Games Past Participants & Sport Enthusiasts: This year’s Georgia State Games Championships are now open for registration! You can register at the website for many sports: www.georgiagames.org - http://www.georgiagames.org. In addition to all of your favorite sports, we have a few of our early events about to begin with registration closing soon. • Shooting – BB Gun – April 19 • Wrestling (FK, FR & GR) – April 25 & 26 • Taekwondo – May 3 & 4 For this year we have a few new exciting sports and events changes: • Girls Lacrosse – June 14 & 15 earlier date • Ultimate Fitness Challenge (a Cross Fit Competition) – July 26 • Open & Masters Swim Meet – August 2 Do not miss out on this year’s Scholastic Sports Olympiad completion. Up to $10,000 in financial grants will be awarded to Georgia Schools in how their students participate in this year’s event. It is easy, see the website for details. Email: info@georgiagames.org for more information. This year's edition of the state's largest multi-sport event will take place on various weekends this summer across the Greater Metro Atlanta Area! The Georgia State Games is a multi-sport festival for Georgia citizens of all ages and athletic abilities, including physically disabled and Paralympics athletes. The Games are recognized by the National Congress of State Games, a member organization of the United States Olympic Committee. More than 10,000 athletes from 500 cities and towns in Georgia competed in last year's Games. More than 1,000 volunteers help make all of these events happen. Interested volunteers can also register at www.georgiagames.org - http://www.georgiagames.org. The State Games concept was developed in New York in 1978 with the Empire State Games. Annually, more than 400,000 athletes compete in State Games nationwide, featuring various sports from the Olympic and Pan American Games programs as well as sports with regional popularity in each state.

April 17th, 2014 - 2014 GRPA Lifeguard Competition

The 2014 GRPA Lifeguard Competition will be held on July 21st at Lake Oconee. Reigning champion Gwinnett County has thrown out a challenge to all departments who employ lifeguards to put a team together and "come get you some"! This friendly competition pits the best of the best in a broad range of contests to see who has the best lifeguards in the state.

April 8th, 2014 - Externship Applications being Sought for NRPA Congress in Charlotte

The Externship Program enables outstanding young professionals 35 years of age and younger in the parks and recreation field to interact with and learn from members of the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration, and other individuals who attend the NRPA Congress and its associated meetings. Up to four Externs are selected each year, of which two are Ernest T. Atwell diversity externships. Externs are paired with Academy members who serve as mentors during the NRPA Congress. Externs may attend selected NRPA Congress meetings, socials and educational sessions with their mentors or on their own. Mentors help introduce Externs to their contacts and widen the young professionals’ networks. After Congress, Externs must write a brief evaluation report including 1) an overview of activities they were involved in during Congress; 2) what they have gained from the program; and 3) strengths and weaknesses of the program, along with suggestions for future improvement Extern Benefits Selected externs each receive 1) reimbursement for the 2014 NRPA Congress registration; 2) up to a $750 scholarship to help cover conference expenses and travel, if the participant’s home department cannot cover costs or can only cover a portion of the costs; and 3) a ticket for the Academy’s annual dinner. Application Procedures Eligible applicants should submit the enclosed application form and supporting materials no later than Thursday, May 15, 2014. Applications must be submitted with two (2) letters of recommendation via e-mail as a PDF. Minimum Eligibility Criteria Must be a current member of NRPA. Must be 35 years or younger, with a degree in parks and recreation or a related field. At least three (3) years of full-time experience in the parks and recreation field, or parks and recreation academia. Current position of at least the “specialist” or “coordinator” level with responsibility for program planning, administration, or supervision; or “doctoral student” Involvement with state, regional and/or national park and recreation associations/societies, and related field organizations. Professional certification is preferred e.g. Certified Park and Recreation Professional (CPRP) or CTRS or be a certified/registered professional under an approved certification/credentialing program Previous Academy Externs are not eligible. Submit completed application to: TRAPS Executive Director Dr. Michal Anne Lord, Ph.D. CPRP, TRS/TXC michalannelord@traps.org Questions? Call the TRAPS office at (512) 267-5550. Sponsored By: American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration

March 13th, 2014 - 2014 Southern Regional Grant Conference

The Georgia Grant Professionals Association will be hosting the 2014 Southern Regional Grant Conference on April 10-11 at the Sheraton Suites Galleria at the intersection of I-285 and Cobb Parkway. Please see the attached flyer for additional information.

February 21st, 2014 - Our World Cafe Workshop

Our World Café is an interactive workshop designed to build and affirm parks & recreation professional’s collective knowledge from around the state to better understand and answer the following questions: • Why are partnerships necessary & important for Parks and Recreation? • What are the characteristics of a successful partnership? • What are the most important ways you could foster a Win-Win relationship with Parks and Recreation partners? Participants will walk away with new possibilities concerning their current and future partnerships and the tools needed to build strategic initiatives to foster these critical relationships for their future success.

February 21st, 2014 - Roswell Wins See.Walk.Cities Competition

In June of 2013, GMA partnered up with cMEcompete to create the first ever state-wide city challenge. “See.Walk.Cities” determined the 2013 most active city in Georgia. The initial goal of the program was to create awareness, support and excitement. “We wanted to get five Cities in Georgia to start with,” said Dan Popovic, founder of cMEcompete. “We also felt this is something new and we could grow it rapidly in the second year.” The program exceeded the original goal, however, with 11 cities participating at various levels. At the end of the six-month trial period, the city of Roswell had the most points, with Dallas coming in second. Both cities were awarded prizes and trophies at GMA’s Mayors’ Day Conference. With so much focus in the country on health and wellness, city leaders play an integral role in the success of creating a healthier nation. Nationwide, more than 20 percent of the U.S. population is obese. That is approximately 62 million Americans, and by 2050, 42 percent of Americans will be obese, based upon current population estimates. That is roughly 131 million Americans. In its first year, “See.Walk.Cities” had 185 individuals join from 11 cities. An online community was set up where participants could join their city team, view community events and a leaderboard. The goal of the program was to socially connect individuals with community fitness events. Participants could enroll in events, track their daily workouts and share inspirational stories of accomplishments. “It’s been fun to see what the various cities are looking to do and how they’d like to use this program to engage their communities,” said Popovic. The winning city was based upon individual accomplishments. As individuals joined, they had the ability to log their daily workouts and enroll in or save events to their profile. The individual’s daily workouts led to a point per mile or a point per half an hour of working out, but they also obtained more points for completing events. The individual’s points rolled up to their city team. The first challenge had two prizes that will go to both Roswell, with 7263 points, and Dallas, with 4546 points. “In its first year, we feel this program had been such a huge success that we have decided to bring it back in 2014 in hopes of getting more cities and further inspiring healthy communities,” said Amy Henderson, director of communications and marketing for GMA. The 2014 challenge kicked off in January and will run through the full calendar year. There will be more prizes for winning cities, and new to this year’s challenge will be a cash prize that will be split between the top three participants that log the most community points. To emphasize that the program is not just about walking, but any form of physical activity, the program will take on the new name, “Active Georgia.” In addition, GMA is partnering with the Georgia Recreation and Parks Association to present the competition in 2014. The competition will not be limited to cities, but counties and joint city-county teams are invited to participate as well. For more information, visit: http://www.cmecompete.com/communities/see-walk-cities/.

February 21st, 2014 - BREAKING NEWS! - Schedule Released for Mandatory Swim/Track Meetings

Per the rules and regulations included in the GRPA Athletic Manual, any agency wishing to participate in the state track meet or the state swim meet is required to attend one of the orientation meetings. While it is mandatory for a staff person to attend, it is also recommended that your team’s coach also attend to make them aware of the GRPA rules. A complete listing of every meeting is included in the attachment. They will also be listed individually on the GRPA calendar.

February 14th, 2014 - Call for Sessions - 2014 GRPA Conference & Trade Show

Attached you will find the 2014 Session Proposal Form for this year's Annual Conference at Jekyll Island. Please pass along to anyone you think would be a potential quality speaker for our conference. This year we are putting a lot of effort into broadening the sessions being offered, especially with our move towards networks rather than sections. With that, you will notice four tracks that are more in line with what NRPA bases their certification on: General Administration/Leadership Programming/Health & Wellness Operations Management Environmental Stewardship/Conservation Our goal this year with the Annual Conference is to offer less sessions per time slot, but those that appeal to a broader range of our professionals. Please remember that just because a proposal is submitted, that doesn't necessarily mean that it will be chosen. Also, please note the Speaker Expense Policy on the second page of the form. You can fill out the attached PDF form and email it back to Kim Watt at kwatt@acworth.org by March 21, 2014. If you have any questions, please contact either of us! Thank you, Kim Watt kwatt@acworth.org Neely Motiejunas nmotiejunas@cherokeega.com Educational Session co-Chairs

February 11th, 2014 - Chattahoochee Technical College Announces Leadership Academy

Chattahoochee Technical College in Marietta will be hosting a leadership academy beginning in August. Please see the attached for additional information.

February 10th, 2014 - BREAKING NEWS! GRPA Announces New Grant Program

The Georgia Recreation and Park Association recently announced a new grant program for its agency members in 2014. Five $1,000 grants are now being made available for agencies initiating new programs in their communities. Brochures were recently mailed out to all GRPA agencies outlining the specifics of the grant program and all agencies are encouraged to apply. At their December 11, 2013 meeting, the GRPA Board of Trustees approved the grant program for 2014 as a means of re-investing back into the membership. The brochure describing the eligibility criteria, application process, evaluation process, and timeline is attached to this story. Important reminder…All grant applications must be submitted electronically to the GRPA office no later than 5:00pm on Friday, March 21st. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact Jimmy at the GRPA office.

January 21st, 2014 - Earn 5 hours of GA Commercial Pesticide Applicator Recertification Credit!

Pesticide Safety & Handling Pesticide Applicator Recertification Training Wednesday, February 12 - Savannah Tuesday, February 18 – Griffin and Cartersville For registration info - www.ugagriffincontinuinged.com Look under Upcoming Events or call (770) 229-3477 or email conteduc@uga.edu Earn five hours of Georgia Commercial Pesticide Credit in multiple categories: Categories 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 31, 32, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, or 41 Registration fee is $50 until one week before training and $60 afterwards For more information, please call (770) 229-3477 or conteduc@uga.edu , or find a registration form and agenda at www.ugagriffincontinuinged.com You can register online. Register early, these classes may fill up! Program sponsored by the Chatham, Spalding and Bartow County Extension Offices and the UGA-Griffin Continuing Education Office

January 7th, 2014 - Georgia Aquarium Announces 2014 Discount Program for GRPA Members

The Georgia Aquarium recently announced it's 2014 discount program for GRPA members. Please click on the attachment to receive your 10% discount coupons or click on the Georgia Aquarium logo on the GRPA home page.

January 6th, 2014 - Gwinnett County to Host Playground Maintenance Safety Training Program

Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation is again partnering with Clemson University to host the 2014 Playground Maintenance Safety Training. For additional information, please see the attached brochure.

December 13th, 2013 - Gwinnett County to host January SAYP meeting

On January 15th, young professionals from across the state will meet at Rhodes Jordan Park Community Recreation Center for the year's first Student & Young Professionals section meeting. If you plan to attend, please RSVP with Ben McDaniel at bmcdaniel@jeffersonrec.com Lunch will not be provided.

December 10th, 2013 - Gwinnett County to Host Youth Sports Expo

Gwinnett County Parks & Recreation (GCPR) in collaboration with Children’s Health Care of Atlanta is holding the Youth Sports Expo on Saturday, February 1 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. at Rhodes Jordan Park. This all day event is the largest sports expo of its kind in the state of Georgia. This year’s keynote speaker is Brian Jordan, former Atlanta Braves and Atlanta Falcons player and founder of the Brian Jordan Foundation. The expo is opened to anyone involved in youth sports, including coaches, team moms, school administrators, athletic associations, and churches. Participants can earn 0.4 CEUs by attending the educational sessions covering everything from the new legal requirements of child abuse reporting, sports injury and concussion, safety and background checks, youth sports management, field and facility management, marketing and advertising, and volunteering. In addition to the educational sessions, participants are encouraged to take advantage of the expo hall featuring product demonstrations, vendor giveaways and a silent auction. The Gwinnett Parks Foundation is also offering a raffle for a customized golf cart from All Pro Carts. Both the silent auction and the raffle proceeds will benefit the Gwinnett County Parks & Recreation Scholarship Fund for youth sports. Doors open at 8:30 a.m. with breakfast provided by Sam’s Club, and lunch provided by Gwinnett Sports Commission. For more information, visit www.gwinnettparks.com or call 770-822-8886. Rhodes Jordan Park is located at 100 East Crogan Street, Lawrenceville, GA 30046.

December 2nd, 2013 - Statewide Trail Conference Set

The first statewide trail conference in 15 years will be held in Athens, GA on April 11th & 12th, 2014. For additional information, please see the attached flyer or visit their Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/georgiatrailsummit

November 19th, 2013 - Georgia Urban Ag Council’s EDGE Expo

The UAC EDGE Expo is for everyone working in every segment of the green industry – and the only place where you can register for training, review and take the Georgia Pesticide Applicators exam ONSITE! Along with 100’s of CEU’s (Pesticide Category 24, GSCAA, IA, ISA, PLANET, and more) and business, landscape and turfgrass education!– take that you can train, review and take the PLUS continuing education credits. • Parks/rec management Turf care Landscape design Sports turf management • Tree care Lighting Golf course management Landscape management • Landscape construction Irrigation If you joined us for the first and second annual EDGE Expos, we thank you for your support. If for some reason you missed them, don’t make that mistake again! Early bird registration deadline is November 25. Click here for complete info: http://edge-expo.com Not a member of the Georgia Urban Ag Council? Join today – and receive membership discount AND registration discounts for all employees! Membership special - join now (see #4) CEUs that get it done - The education required for professionals Industry updates - Experts discuss today’s hottest topics Gear that saves time (money) - Hands-on equipment demonstrations Networking with the best - Quality time with quality people Powerful knowledge - Up-to-the minute research and insights

November 19th, 2013 - GRPA Membership Dues Date Changes Approved - January 30 NEW DEADLINE

At the recent GRPA conference in Columbus, membership approved a by-law change to condense the amount of time when your GRPA membership dues can be paid. Under the old format, the final deadline was after district and state basketball was completed. The ballot language that was approved follows: ------------------ Dues - shall be payable January 1, and must be received by January 30 or privileges and services shall terminate. No refunds or reductions shall be made. A grace period (until February 15) with a $5 late charge shall be provided for voting members to reinstate their voting rights. Renewals with a $5 late charge shall be accepted after the grace period but voting rights shall not be reinstated. Non-voting members may renew at any date following the January 30 deadline with $5 late fee. Agency members failing to renew by the deadline may renew at any time by paying a $25 late charge. Student membership shall coincide with the calendar year. ------------ Basically, all GRPA membership dues are due by January 30th. A grace period until February 15th is allowed with penalty. Please take note of these changes.

November 14th, 2013 - Long-Time Douglas Director Tom Williams Inducted in to GRPA Hall of Fame

Each year at the annual awards and installation banquet, the Georgia Recreation and Park Association recognizes members, both present and past, who have exhibited excellence in parks and recreation in their communities. With that in mind, retired Douglas-Coffee County Director, Tom Williams, was inducted into the GRPA Hall of Fame in Columbus on November 7th for his tremendous service to GRPA and to his local community. Williams served as President of GRPA in 1969-70. Prior to that time and in the following years he served on many committees and was especially active in the early development of the athletic committee and its governing manual. Tom was among the original recreation majors who entered the field after graduating from the newly established Georgia Southern Program. He was, and is, a loyal and dedicated member of the association; his contributions and involvement were characterized by a positive attitude about what could be accomplished by the association and he worked effectively to accomplish the goals set forth by our professional organization. Besides being an active member, he served as the director of recreation and parks in Alma and Douglas. When Tom served as President, it was at a time when GRPA was implementing some significant changes in following the rapid activity and accomplishments of the formative years. Times of large change are never easy but Tom was effective and persistent in pursuing the new goals and directions set forth by the board and adopted by the members. He was one of the very influential leaders during his tenure, but he was also more of a behind the scenes leader; others often received recognition for singular contributions rather than Tom who was focused on the big picture and was content to let others receive the credit. One other note needs to be made concerning the contributions of Tom Williams. At the same time he was serving several committees as the director of recreation and the state through GRPA, he served his country as an officer in the US Army Reserves retiring with the rank of Colonel. Before retiring he commanded an engineering unit in operation Desert Storm which constructed the roads into Iraq used by the military to move personnel, equipment and supplies north in the invasion. GRPA Past-President, Hall of Fame member, and long-time friend Charlie Clegge presided over the induction ceremony and began with these words, “I dare say that not many of you will know our recipient today. Some of you may only know of recipient as the chief cook and bottle washer of our wonderful Wednesday night shrimp boils and chicken dinners at conference. However, more of you from south of the gnat-line will know this person. Because you may not know our recipient does not lessen the leadership and contributions this professional colleague has made. To the credit of this recipient, the contributions were not made in order to get credit or for personal gain. They were made out of a deep dedication to our profession, this association, and to the enhancement of an improved quality of life for the citizens we all serve through recreation and park programs and facilities.” Congratulations Tom on this well-deserved seat at the table of the GRPA Hall of Fame!

November 13th, 2013 - Dublin-Lauren County’s Randy Spivey Receives 2013 Mike Daniel Award

GRPA’s Mike Daniel Award recognizes a member who exhibits excellence in recreation programming each year. At the 2013 GRPA Annual Conference, Dublin-Laurens County Recreation Authority’s Athletic Superintendent Randy “Spook” Spivey received this prestigious award. Spivey has been a member of GRPA for 21 years and manages one of the top athletic programs in the state. His local program and number of tournaments offered has grown throughout the years due to his efforts. Spivey’s service to GRPA is also exemplary. He has chaired the GRPA state athletic committee several times in the past and is a stalwart on the annual conference committee each year coordinating the exhibit hall at conference. His service also includes stints as the athletic section chair and incoming District 1 Commissioner. His supervisor, Dublin-Laurens County Director and GRPA Past-President Danny Jones, made the award presentation adding the following about Randy, “Our recipient meets so many of the same attributes that I just described earlier. Our recipient is a lifelong resident in the community where he now works and has worked his entire recreation career. He loves his family, his community, and his GRPA family. He’s a great problem solver, diffuser of problems, great communicator, adaptable and has a big heart driven by passion. He loves working within his home programs and special events and can always be found at most GRPA State meets where helping hands are always needed. He has one of the most active phones I’ve ever seen – answering GRPA questions from all over the State dealing with athletic matters. He is probably one of the most well-known people in GRPA and probably only a handful of people know him by his given name. It is my pleasure to present the 2013 Mike Daniel Award to Randy L. Spivey for those of you that don’t know him by that name - Spook Spivey.” Congratulations to Randy “Spook” Spivey on receiving the 2013 GRPA Mike Daniel Award!

November 13th, 2013 - Retired Gwinnett County Director Sharon Plunkett Inducted into GRPA Hall of Fame

To be inducted by your peers into a Hall of Fame is one of the highest honors bestowed upon an individual. Retired Gwinnett County Director Sharon Plunkett was recognized in this manner at the recent GRPA Conference in Columbus. Upon graduation from Georgia Southern in 1974, Sharon worked in College Park and Clayton County until 1988 when she was named Director in Gwinnett County. She finished out her storied 35 year parks and recreation career in that position with her retirement in 2009. One of the greatest influences this inductee made on recreation in the state of Georgia would have to be her 20 plus years of leadership, forethought, and management of Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation. There is no question as to the excitement and challenges that this young professional faced as Director. The Parks and Recreation Division was experiencing extensive growth of parks, facilities, recreation programs, staff and budget. But she never lost focus, looked back, or slowed down and because of her dedication, passion, leadership, and drive she was able to build a county parks and recreation program, in a very short time, to the level of excellence that was recognized around the state and on a national level. Her legacy in Gwinnett County is a strong, community/volunteer based youth athletic association, dog parks, equestrian trails, walking trails, and an award-winning park system will live on for years to come. GRPA Past-President Dr. Steve Dempsey conducted Sharon’s induction ceremony and added the following comments, “This inductee was very active in the GRPA, serving for a number of years on the Board of Trustees as an executive officer, District 7 Commissioner, and chairing various state and district committees. While serving as GRPA President, I was fortunate enough to have several people assist me with my presidential goals and relied on a few close people for guidance, feedback, and assistance to help move the GRPA agenda forward in the state. Sharon Plunkett was one of those few people who I would go to for counsel. Each issue I approached her with, she always would have GRPA membership at the forefront of her mind – is GRPA doing this for the right reasons? Will this initiative/issue assist/advance the membership? Sharon always reminded me that strong members build a strong association and a strong association builds a strong profession. Sharon was always an advocate for our members.” In closing, Dr. Dempsey concluded with the following concerning Plunkett, “One could go on and on about Sharon, the role model she was for all women in the profession, the pioneer she was for the programming in Gwinnett County, the excellence she would draw out of people – encouraging them to be at their best every day, but I will stop here. If one were to look back at Sharon’s career, you would find that everything Sharon did and accomplished embodied the foundation of professionalism, service, and dedication to the profession, citizens, and staff she held so dear to her heart. I know of no other person with more passion and love of her profession than Sharon. She has truly impacted many lives and been a part of many initiatives that helped to move the profession forward in Georgia.” Congratulations to Sharon on taking her seat next to the other past distinguished leaders in the recreation profession in Georgia!

November 12th, 2013 - Dalton’s Steve Card Named 2013 GRPA Distinguished Professional

At the recent 2013 GRPA Annual Conference & Trade Show in Columbus, Dalton Parks and Recreation Department Director Steve Card received the association’s highest professional award for his outstanding service. During the conference’s awards and installation banquet, the association’s state volunteer awards, agency of the year awards, hall of fame awards, Mike Daniel programming award, and distinguished professional award were presented. Steve has served on the GRPA Board of Trustees since 2004 as a district commissioner and as a member of the executive committee. He served the association as President in 2012. His passion for our profession and our association is evident any time you talk with him and his positive attitude is contagious. His leadership this year chairing the task force to create a nominating application has been invaluable to the process. As past-president of GRPA, he also chaired the nominating committee. Since joining the Dalton Parks and Recreation Department as Director, he has created a "buzz" within the department and they are doing even greater things in their community. He is constantly pushing his staff to find new and better ways of accomplishing their jobs. He has persuaded them to compete in various athletic adventures as a team which only builds camaraderie amongst the staff. Cobb County Director, Eddie Canon presented the award and had the following three words that describe his friend and peer. “Passion…To be successful in our profession you must have passion for three things: people, making a difference and recreation. You must truly care about the people you serve and the people you work with. You may agree with them or not but the willingness to listen, act and make a difference in their leisure life takes passion. You must have a passion to lead, mentor and motivate staff daily to reach their potential as professionals. If you are around his staff you know he does that on a daily basis. Our recipient made a speech a few years back to this organization that many of you will recall. He showed his true passion for our profession, GRPA and the city in which he works. He motivated all of us that day to be better and work harder to make a difference in our community and organization. Dedication…To be successful in the recreation business, you must be dedicated to your family, department and to our profession. I start with family because that is the one area in all of our lives that gets the less attention. Family does not care about bad calls, politicians or rain outs. They just care about supporting us and being together as a family. Our recipient is a family man who is dedicated to his wife and two children. They do spend a lot of time at the park but they do that together. He understands the importance of being involved in his children's life as they grow up. He is dedicated to his department. He pushes his staff to be involved but there is nothing he would not do for his staff. When you see his department together, you realize how close they are and that is because of the atmosphere he has created. He has made a big impact in the short time in Dalton and is dedicated to making that program the best for the citizens. His dedication to GRPA is unmatched by our membership. He has held every position in our organization. He is a worker, listener and a motivator for our profession around the state. If you think about GRPA, his name is at the top of the list. Competitive…The last word I would use for our recipient is competitive. He feels GRPA is the best and he feels Dalton is the best. He works every day to be the best professional he can be and he pushes staff and others around him to be the same way. He will not lose if he can do anything about it.” Congratulations to Steve on receiving this prestigious award!

October 31st, 2013 - Atlanta Certified Disability Sports Specialist Training

BlazeSports will be offering a Level 1 & II Certified Disability Sports Specialist (CDSS) training on Friday, December 13, at the Courtyard Marriott, 130 Clairemont Ave, Decatur, GA. Registration will begin at 8:00 am. The program will begin promptly at 9:00 am and will end at 5:00 pm. For more information on this Disability Sports Specialist Certification visit our website at: http://www.blazesports.org/resources/professional-development/certified-disability-sport-specialist/ The program fee is $25 and include the course, refreshments, 2014 membership to BlazeSports America, certification exam fee. CEU are available at an additional $20 fee. Pre-registration is required. Space is limited. For registration material contact Jeff Jones at jjones@blazesports.org

October 20th, 2013 - 2014 State Tournament Bids Are Now Being Accepted

Place the spotlight on your community by hosting one of the many GRPA State Championships in 2014. These events bring visitors into your cities and counties where they help boost your local economy. The GRPA State Athletic Committee is now accepting bids from all GRPA agencies to host these events. The bid form is attached to this story and can also be found on the GRPA website under the "Athletics" tab. The 2014 Athletic Calendar is also attached to this story. All bids must be submitted to the 2014 SAC Chair, Wayne Maddox by November 8th. The committee will meet on Monday, December 9th in Gainesville to determine all state hosts.

October 15th, 2013 - Woodstock Parks and Recreation Department Awarded CAPRA Accreditation

Woodstock, GA — On October 7, 2013, the City of Woodstock Parks and Recreation Department was recognized for excellence in the field of parks and recreation management by becoming one of only 119 agencies in the country currently holding national accreditation from the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA). This distinguished accomplishment was announced in Houston, Texas during the Annual Best of the Best Awards Ceremony at National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) 2013 Congress and Exposition. National accreditation is an extensive multi-year process and requires significant commitment from department staff. National accreditation requires park and recreation agencies to respond to 144 standards representing elements of effective and efficient park and recreation operations. To become accredited, agencies must fully meet 36 standards deemed fundamental to a quality agency and at least 92 of the remaining standards. CAPRA accreditation is the only national accreditation for parks and recreation agencies and is a measure of an agency’s overall quality of operation, management and service to the community. The Commission is comprised of representatives from NRPA, the American Academy for Parks and Recreation Administration, the National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials, the International City/County Management Association, the American Association for Physical Activity and Recreation, the Armed Forces Recreation Society and the Council for State Executive Directors The process of accreditation is extensive and took several years to accomplish. After the initial application, the agency completed a detailed self-assessment report followed by a site visit to the City of Woodstock in July 2013. Finally, a review was conducted by CAPRA and accreditation was formally conferred by the Commission on October 7, 2013. The accreditation process for the City of Woodstock Parks and Recreation Department started four years ago with the initial application. After countless hours of internal evaluation of all department policies, procedures and operation plans, the City had its official site visit in July 2013. That site visit prompted additional review of the city’s operations and formalizing procedures within the department and final adoption of policy and procedures by the City Council in late July. “Accreditation provides evaluation from an outside / unbiased source. It identifies areas for improvement within the department, by comparing our department against national standards of best practices. The accreditation process requires an ongoing internal review of our policies and procedures and helps document every aspect of the department. Accreditation validates to the public that we are a well-administered department that meets and exceeds national standards.” “I want to commend my staff that worked tirelessly to achieve accreditation and never wavered from their commitment to seeing us through this process. They work hard every day to provide the residents of Woodstock with the highest quality of service possible. In addition I want to thank Woodstock City Manager Jeff Moon, Mayor Donnie Henriques and the City Council for their daily support and their ongoing efforts to ensure that we can provide the best parks and recreation facilities and services possible” said Preston Pooser, Parks and Recreation Director for the City of Woodstock. The Woodstock Parks and Recreation Department was established five years ago during a City-wide reorganization. “We’ve always known we have a great Parks and Recreation Department, but it’s always nice to get outside affirmation of this fact. We are extremely proud of the work that Preston and his entire team and department did in meeting this goal. I think it is quite an honor for them to become just the seventh such department to receive national accreditation in the State of Georgia” said Jeff Moon, City Manager.

September 24th, 2013 - GRPA Board Approves Task Force Recommendations on BOT Composition

A task force was created by GRPA President Detrick Stanford to review the current composition of the GRPA Board of Trustees. The task force was co-chaired by President-Elect Lisa Cherry and Vice-President Michael Brantley and was composed of the seven district commissioners and twelve section chairs. The task force met several times throughout the summer and a group of recommendations were presented to the GRPA Board of Trustees last week in Clayton County. The Board unanimously approved all of the recommendations and their corresponding by-law amendments for presentation to the membership during the annual business meeting at conference this year. The recommendations, a set of frequently asked questions, and the proposed by-law amendments are attached to this story. The by-law amendments will be on the ballot that can be obtained prior to the business meeting that will be held Wednesday afternoon at conference in Columbus. Any member who will not be at conference and would like to vote can obtain an absentee ballot by contacting the GRPA office prior to October 11th.

September 20th, 2013 - The Georgia Games Presents the "GA 400 – Pay the Last Toll 2013 Road Race"

We would like to announce one of those once in a lifetime running events: the GA 400 – Pay the Last Toll 2013! We will be closing down GA 400 on Sunday morning, November 17 to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Georgia 400 roadway opening! Race will go from Glen Ridge Connector to Lenox Road (about 4 miles). Many people will considered this race a “Little Peachtree”! You will run THROUGH the toll booths and pay your LAST 50 cents! All toll booth proceeds will go to local charities! This will be one of those rarely unique experiences, so do not miss out! Many of the original sponsors from 20 years ago will be back to help celebrate! We are only 8 weeks away, so do not wait as registration may close out due to the highly anticipated interest in this running event. Get a great, new 20th anniversary GA 400 Race shirt! Pass the word and bring your friends to run, but do not wait to register. • There will be NO race day registration. • There will ONLY be on-line registration through Active.com. • We will have a packet pick up the week prior to the race. All vital information and registration links are at www.georgiagames.org under the GA 400 link. More information will be posted as things finalize. More information will be posted on the website but DO NOT WAIT to register! Some of our sponsors are: • Atlanta Big Self Magazine • Big Peach Running Company • Phipps Plaza • Lenox Square • Samson Trail ways • Atlanta Marriott NW • And many more to come!

September 20th, 2013 - 2013 Ultimate Cheer Fest

Please see the 2 attachments to get all of the information on this event.

September 17th, 2013 - GA STMA Fall Field Day

September 13th, 2013 - Pesticide Applicator Credits Available

Please see the attachments for upcoming opportunities to receive credits toward your pesticide applicators license.

September 3rd, 2013 - GRPA Service Awards - Celebrating Your Years of Service

The strength of any association lies in it's membership. GRPA recognizes those who have been members for at least 20 years and then in 5 year increments after that. If you have been a GRPA member for 20, 25, 30, 35, etc. years, complete the attached form and submit it to the GRPA office by September 27th. You will receive a membership pin with the number of years on it at the annual business meeting at conference this year. If you cannot attend the meeting at conference, we will mail your pin to you. Thank you for your dedicated years of service to GRPA.

June 19th, 2013 - Shorthand Rule for GRPA Baseball and Softball Clarified

In Addition to GRPA Rule Book Baseball Recommended Clarification: D. SHORTHANDED RULE. 1. To start a game: a. a game may begin or finish with one less than required to start. (8 - Mite Live and Up , Flea and Mite with Machine – 9). See GRPA pg 99 b. The vacant position must be listed last in the batting order. c. An out will be recorded when the vacant position in the batting order is scheduled to bat. 2 To continue a game once started with a full team listed on the line-up card: a. If a team begins play with the required number of players as listed, that team may continue a game with one less player than is currently in the batting order whenever a player leaves the game for any reason other than ejection. b. If playing shorthanded, and a substitute arrives, the substitute must be inserted immediately into the vacant spot. If the substitute refuses to enter for any reason that player becomes ineligible for the remainder of the game. c. If the player leaving the game is a runner or batter, the runner or batter shall be declared out, d. When the player who has left the game is scheduled to bat, an out shall be declared for each turn at bat. An inning or the game can end with an automatic out. The player who has left the game cannot return to the line-up. EXCEPTION: A player who has left the game under the blood rule may return even after missing a turn at bat. EFFECT: Failure to have the required number of eligible players to start or continue a game will result in a forfeit. In addition to GRPA Rule Book-- Softball is explained better in GRPA Manual ---this is from ASA Rule Book Softball Recommended Clarification: FROM ASA RULE BOOK (pg 48 49, 2013 Edition) D. SHORTHANDED RULE. 1. To start a game: a. a game may begin or finish with one less than required to start. b. The vacant position must be listed last in the batting order. c. An out will be recorded when the vacant position in the batting order is scheduled to bat. d. (Co-ed Slow Pitch) If a team plays shorthanded with either three players in the infield or outfield, at least one must be male and at least one must be a female. 2 To continue a game once started with a full team listed on the line-up card: a. If a team begins play with the required number of players as listed, that team may continue a game with one less player than is currently in the batting order whenever a player leaves the game for any reason other than ejection. Under no circumstances shall a team be permitted to bat 1)less than 8 in Fast Pitch, 2) less than 9 in slow pitch, 3) less than 10 in slow pitch when using an EP and 4) less than 11 in slow pitch when using two EP’s. b. If playing shorthanded, and a substitute arrives, the substitute must be inserted immediately into the vacant spot. If the substitute refuses to enter for any reason that player becomes ineligible for the remainder of the game. c. (Co-ed) If another player of the correct gender arrives, that player must be inserted into the line-up in the vacant spot by alternating genders. d. If the player leaving the game is a runner or batter, the runner or batter shall be declared out, e. When the player who has left the game is scheduled to bat, an out shall be declared for each turn at bat. An inning or the game can end with an automatic out. The player who has left the game cannot return to the line-up. f. (Co-ed) The batting order must still alternate and the defensive positioning remains as required. EXCEPTION: A player who has left the game under the blood rule may return even after missing a turn at bat. EFFECT: Failure to have the required number of eligible players to start or continue a game will result in a forfeit.

June 14th, 2013 - Final Plans Released for 2013 Lifeguard Competition

If you have lifeguards, you should be competing in the GRPA Statewide Lifeguard Competition. The lifeguard competition is open to any agency! It is a fun day where lifeguards from all around the state compete in events that utilize the lifeguard's rescue skills and knowledge of life saving. Date: Monday July 29, 2013 Place: Old Salam Park on Lake Oconee. (Notice the location has changed because the beach in Clayton County is not available, so we are going back to the Georgia Power Lake) Time: check in begins 8am events begin at 9am Things you need to know: Bring lunch for your lifeguards and bring a tent for you to camp out under why the events are going on. A team consist of 4-6 members with at least one member being a female. Price: $100 per team for GRPA member agencies and $150 for non-GRPA members Lots and lots of prizes will be given away!!! If you are interested in going please email Kristin Strickland at kstrickland@cityofcartersville.org so we can get the correct number of estimated teams for t-shirts!! The event is sponsored by Georgia Power!!! Please see the attached information sheet to learn more about the competition.

June 14th, 2013 - Excellence in Youth Sports Award: Gwinnett County providing top-quality youth sports

Between the teamwork that takes place out on the fields by youth athletes and the teamwork of staff and volunteers needed to serve nearly 48,000 youngsters, Gwinnett (Ga.) County Parks and Recreation truly is a sports town. They are also a winner of the 2012 Excellence in Youths Sports Award, developed by the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) and Athletic Business magazine. The award recognizes programs that are doing superior jobs of conducting diverse activities with a focus on providing safe and positive experiences for all participants, including children, parents and coaches. Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation work in tandem with 28 non-profit youth athletic associations to provide a variety of quality youth sports offerings, like football, cheerleading, soccer, basketball, lacrosse, hockey, softball, tennis and special needs recreation. “Our long term relationships with these organizations demonstrates our efforts of maximizing community resources, teamwork, collaboration, cost efficiency, responsiveness, proper conduct and service excellence to the citizens of Gwinnett County,” said Tina Fleming, a Certified Youth Sports Administrator (CYSA) and division director of Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation. These youth athletic associations are organized entirely of volunteers and parents. In 2011, parents, volunteers, board members and coaches of these associations devoted a grand total of 811,625 hours to youth sports. For most, this volunteered time is in addition to normal day to day activities, like working, family responsibilities and going to school. Eye on Education Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation recognizes that education opportunities are crucial in making sure volunteers of the youth athletic associations are on the same page. For example, in the past they have hosted a Youth Sports Expo not only for volunteers of their local associations, but for any youth sports provider throughout Georgia to attend. Their expo covers topics most important to youth sports, safety and health related topics, risk management, background checks and soil maintenance. Even more, many of Gwinnett County’s youth athletic associations complete training through the National Youth Sports Administrators Association (NYSAA), a program of NAYS. “As volunteers coming from an array of backgrounds, it’s important for those volunteers to receive training and education in order to help protect not only themselves, but the youth they serve,” said Fleming. NYSAA is an online clinic covering the most important aspects of youth sports administration, including how to manage their volunteer coaches; work with parents, officials and other participants; develop a volunteer board; protect the program from embezzlement; insurance; and how to use fundraising and marketing to support their league. “Having trained, qualified volunteers ensures that the sports programs being operated on Gwinnett County property are the best that they can possibly be for all youth participating,” she said. Gwinnett County prides itself on being a sports town and has produced a who’s-who list of premiere athletes, including Maya Moore, the first overall pick in the 2011 WNBA Draft; Jason Elam, retired NFL kicker for the Denver Broncos and Atlanta Falcons; and George Rogers, the 1980 Heisman Trophy winner. This driven, sports town mentality is balanced with an emphasis on sportsmanship. “By learning that ‘trying your best’ is the definition for success, coaches and athletes come to value, expect and demand good sportsmanship from their players,” said Fleming. Founded in 1981, the National Alliance for Youth Sports is America's leading advocate for positive, safe sports and activities for children. The non-profit 501(c)(3) organization is headquartered in West Palm Beach, Fla. and works with more than 3,000 community-based youth sport programs across the country to provide programs and services for everyone involved in youth sports experiences, including professional administrators, volunteer administrators, volunteer coaches, officials, parents and young athletes. For more information, visit www.nays.org.

June 5th, 2013 - NRPA Young Professional Externs Being Sought

The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration again this year will offer a wonderful opportunity for outstanding young professionals to further their professional development by enabling them to attend the 2013 NRPA Annual Congress in Houston, Texas. We need help from all Academy members in getting the word out to potential externs to make sure that they apply by the June 21, 2013 deadline. The Academy’s 2013 Young Professional Externships cover the cost of NRPA Annual Congress registration (early-bird) and provide a $750 stipend toward lodging and transportation costs. During the conference, the Externs also participate in Academy meetings and events and are mentored by Academy members. Four (4) Externships are awarded, including two (2) Ernest T. Atwell Diversity Externships for ethnic minority applicants. Young professionals, 35 years old and younger, are encouraged to apply by the June 21, 2013 deadline. Additional information and application forms are available online at www.aapra.org or from Academy Externship Committee Chair Robert Armistead, robert.armistead@co.travis.tx.us .

June 4th, 2013 - Nominations Now Open for 2014 Officers/Trustees

The GRPA Nominating Committee is now accepting nominations for the 2014 slate of officers and Board of Trustees. Any GRPA member may submit these nominations. There are two major changes to the nomination process and to who is eligible to serve beginning this year. The first change is to be eligible to serve as a GRPA officer (President, President-Elect, Vice President, and Secretary/Treasurer), a member can now either be certified by a nationally recognized credentialing organization or have held an active leadership role in GRPA for at least three years. The second change is that all nominations must be submitted on the Board of Trustees Application found on this page. A fillable PDF of the application can be found on the GRPA home page in one of the small feature boxes. You can print it off, fill it out, and send in or you can fill it out on line, save it, and e-mail it in. Nominations will not be accepted unless they are on this form. Please submit all nominations to: Steve Card, Nominating Committee Chair Dalton Parks and Recreation Department P.O. Box 661 Dalton, GA 30722 Fax: 706-278-1057 scard@cityofdalton-ga.gov Submission Deadline: Friday – August 2nd Positions available for 2014 President-Elect, Vice President, Secretary/Treasurer, (2) Professional Trustees

June 4th, 2013 - New Feature Now Available for GRPA Members

A new resource is now available for all GRPA members on the GRPA website. After logging in to the site with your user name and password, on the "Member Home" page you will find a "Resource" tab just to the right of the "CEU" tab. When you click on the Resource tab, you will find sample job descriptions, policies, articles, documents, and other resources that really didn't fit in one of the other categories. We will continue to add resources as they become available. If you think of specific samples that would assist you in the performance of your job, please let us know and we will try to find some samples to post.

May 28th, 2013 - 2013 GRPA State Golf Tournament Plans Announced

Host: Ware County Recreation Department Site: The Lakes Golf Course at Laura Walker State Park 5500 Laura Walker Rd; Waycross, GA 31503 When: Friday, July 12, 2013 Entry Deadline: Monday, July 8, 2013 - Please email a list of players and their ages to tmeeks@warecounty.com and call the office to confirm your entries. This will assist us in setting up start times and make the check in process smoother. Time: 9:00 AM First Tee Time. Allow plenty of time for check in Entry Fees: $15- 8U / 11U - Boys and Girls (9 holes) $20- 13U / 15U / 18U - Boys and Girls (18 holes) $25- Adults (19 & Over) Men and Women *Age control date is prior to August 1st, 2013 **Make checks payable to WCRD** Please submit payments prior to event to: Ware Co Recreation Department, 2110 Recreation Road, Waycross, GA 31503 Contact: Rod Mitchell, Ware Co. Recreation Department, Director: Office: (912) 287-4488 / Fax: (912) 287-4485 / Cell: (912) 337-5836 Lakes Golf Course at Laura Walker State Park: Phone(s): (912)285-6154, 1-877-591-5578, 1-800-434-0982 Fax: (912) 284-2982 Website: www.golfgeorgia.org Note: Practice round can be played Thursday, July 11th. Call the Lakes for a tee time; be sure to mention you are with the GRPA State Tournament.

May 24th, 2013 - BREAKING NEWS! - Georgia Return to Play Act - HB48

With this year's passage of HB 48 by the Georgia Legislature, new requirements to educate youth athletes and their parents on the dangers of concussions in youth athletic activities will become effective in January 2014. The Georgia Department of Public Health is referring everyone to the "Heads Up - Concussion in Youth Sports" program offered by the CDC. A link to the program on the CDC website can be found by cutting and pasting the following link into your web browser: http://www.cdc.gov/concussion/HeadsUp/youth.html On this site, you will find the following information: Parent/Athlete Information Sheets in English and Spanish Program Posters to Have at Your Facilities On-Line Training Program for Coaches Coaches Clipboard Sheets The CDC site has the option to order these items for your program, however some of the items are “Out of Stock” and I learned this morning that they will not be resupplying them any time soon. You may need to print them from the PDF’s on their site. The educational material that the parent/legal guardian must sign is a two-page document so you may want to print it front and back. To better define the requirements of the law, here are a couple of bullet points: Required of all public recreation facilities, businesses, and non-profit organizations which organize youth athletic activities where there is a participation fee Must be done prior to athlete beginning activities Must provide concussion educational information to all coaches and officials Must provide concussion educational information to all youth athletes and their parent/legal guardian. The parent/legal guardian must sign an acknowledgement of receipt. It is strongly encouraged that all coaches and officials of a youth activity complete an annual concussion recognition education course It is strongly encouraged that all public recreation providers follow the return to play and removal procedures required of school systems found in paragraph 3 of the legislation As always, if you have any additional questions, please contact the GRPA office.

May 24th, 2013 - Atlanta Parent Magazine lists some of Atlanta's Top Playgrounds

In the current issue of Atlanta Parent Magazine, they have a list of some of metro Atlanta's top playgrounds. They do acknowledge that their list is very subjective but some of our member agencies made the cut.

May 10th, 2013 - Class B/C State Track Meet Information

Please see the attachments for information on this weekends Class B/C State Track Meet being held in Carrollton.

May 3rd, 2013 - GA Sports Turf Managers Association Spring Meet-Up

Please see the attached flyer to get more information. There is no charge for the event.

May 1st, 2013 - GRPA Men’s Church Equalizer

GRPA Men’s Church Equalizer - Augusta, Georgia

April 30th, 2013 - CYSA Academy to be Offered at 2013 GRPA Conference

GRPA is proud to offer the opportunity for recreation professionals to obtain their Certified Youth Sports Administrator (CYSA) credential at our 2013 Annual Conference & Trade Show in Columbus. The class will be held on Wednesday, November 6th. For additional information, click on the flyer attached to this story.

April 29th, 2013 - 2013 GRPA State Track Meet-Class A-Augusta

Schedule attached

April 19th, 2013 - GRPA Board Approves New Nominating Process

The GRPA Board of Trustees recently approved a new board nomination process at its March meeting. Based on a recommendation from a task force created by President Stanford, there will now be a formal application that will be completed by any GRPA member wishing to serve on the executive committee, as a trustee, or as a NRPA representative. District Commissioners and Section Chairs are elected by their respective members. President Stanford added, “The task force was a continuous build out of Past-President Card's goal of leadership transparency to ensure membership understands how the nomination process works and to develop some objectivity as to how Executive Committee members are selected." The application is attached to this article and must be completed in its entirety. It will also be added to the website for easy download. All applications that are received will be evaluated and graded by the nominating committee before submitting a proposed slate of officers to the Board of Trustees. Members of the task force include Steve Card-Chair, Nicole Horne, Craig Sowell, Robby Newton, Sonia Wimbish, and Danny Jones.

April 2nd, 2013 - GRPA President Detrick Stanford Elected NRPA Chair-Elect

Detrick Stanford, Director of the Clayton County Parks and Recreation Department has been elected as the Chair-Elect to the National Recreation and Park Association, a professional membership association with over 32,000 citizen and professional members. He will assume the duties as the Chair-Elect for the national association starting at the 2013 Annual Congress in Houston, Texas. As the Chair-Elect, he will be responsible for working with a twenty-one member Board of Directors, responsible for the formulation of policies that control and direct the affairs of the national organization. Previously, he served three years on the NRPA Board of Directors, and numerous committees, including the Nomination and Board Development, Strategic Planning, and Program committees of the national organization. Detrick Stanford is currently the President of the Georgia Recreation and Park Association, and served GRPA in numerous leadership positions, including the Strategic Planning, Executive Director Search, Membership, and Chair of the Minority Section. He has his Bachelor of Science degree from Georgia Southern University in Recreation Administration and his Master of Science degree from Troy State University in Public Administration. NRPA is the leading advocacy organization dedicated to the advancement of public parks and recreation opportunities. Founded in 1965 through the merger of 5 national organizations dedicated to the same cause, NRPA has grown over the years - in total membership, in outreach efforts, in building partnerships, and in serving as the voice and defender of parks and recreation.

March 12th, 2013 - GA SportsTurf Managers Association Offers Free Seminar

The Georgia SportsTurf Managers Association will be hosting their free spring seminar on March 20th in Warner Robins. Included at this years seminar are aerification presentations, aerification demos, field painting demos, field and facility tours, and much more. There will be a free lunch catered by Shane's Rib Shack for all participants. Anyone wishing to attend this year must RSVP by March 15th to mholder@roswellgov.com .

February 4th, 2013 - UGA Terminating Recreation Degree Program

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the closing of the Recreation and Leisure Studies Program at the University of Georgia, effective upon graduation of the students currently enrolled in its undergraduate and graduate programs. Recreation and Leisure Studies (RLST) has been in continuous operation since 1975, operating as an independent academic department until August 2005 when units in the College of Education were reorganized and RLST merged with the larger Department of Counseling and Human Development Services (CHDS). Since then, RLST has existed as a separate Program within CHDS, offering degrees of B.S.Ed, M. Ed, M.A., and Ph.D. The Recreation and Leisure Studies Program at the University of Georgia is one of only two accredited recreation and leisure undergraduate programs in the state of Georgia. The program has had a strong alliance with summer and youth camps, city and county recreation agencies, nonprofit recreation organizations, and clinical or community organizations serving people with disabilities. Alumni have assumed leadership positions in community recreation services throughout the State and nation, and our doctoral students are populated in faculty positions throughout North America. The Program has provided a vital service to the state, the region, the nation and the globe. The integrated undergraduate curriculum has received national awards, and our faculty have significant national and international reputations. As most know, the recession that started in 2006 has had considerable impact on higher education. In addition, the Georgia state government passed legislation that reduced teachers’ incentive to pursue graduate degrees, resulting in a significant decrease in enrollment, and consequently funding, in the College of Education. Against this backdrop, Recreation and Leisure Studies has suffered the loss of instructional support during each of the past six years. Despite that loss, RLST increased its credit hour production for the College of Education and maintained significant enrollment at the undergraduate level. In addition we have had significant community engagement including community service-learning and fund-raising for local public and non-profit organizations. However, in Fall 2012 the Recreation and Leisure Studies graduate program was deactivated for relatively low enrollments. Shortly after, Dr. Gwynn Powell indicated she would be leaving for an amazing opportunity at Clemson University. When the Deans Office chose not to resource the refilling of that position, it became clear that we could not offer the signature-learning environment for our undergraduates or sustain the program long-term. We will see our current juniors through to graduation but we will not start a new cohort in our undergraduate Unified Core next fall. Likewise, current graduate students will be allowed to complete their degrees. When the last student graduates, Recreation and Leisure Studies at The University of Georgia will cease to exist as a stand-alone program. It is an unhappy moment for us but, in light of the economic climate and challenges we have navigated the past six years, the decision to close our program is the right one since we would not be able to operate it to our standards. The RLST faculty have already been contributing to other programs in Counseling and Human Development Services and we will refocus our teaching and service in that direction. However, our scholarly allegiance will always be with Leisure Studies, so even without a program, our contributions to the research in that area will continue and we will remain active in national and international leisure studies associations. Dr. Corey W. Johnson, Associate Professor & Program Coordinator Dr. Doug Kleiber, Professor Dr. Gwynn Powell, Professor Dr. Diane Samdahl, Professor

February 1st, 2013 - “The Young Professional”

On behalf of the 2012-2013 Young Professional Network (YPN) Leadership Team, I would like to welcome everyone to enjoy the second edition of “The Young Professional.” This publication – created by students and young professionals in parks and recreation - is designed specifically for students and young professionals and will regularly consist of relevant and timely student and young professional opportunities, research articles, trends in the field, messages from distinguished professionals, and much more. As a Network within NRPA, the YPN aimed to develop this publication as a resource to students and young professionals, but also as a way to engage our network members in opportunities to hone leadership and other professional skills. Any NRPA network can do something similar to inspire and engage. Think about what might be beneficial or useful for your particular network interest and how your network can make it happen. I ask you all a question to encourage some discussion and challenge you; what are ways you’re involved within your network and what can you do to make your network more valuable to its members? With that, please let me tell you a little about the process in which the YP is developed and distributed: First allow me to give credit where credit is due. The YP is a product of the YPN’s Michael Bradley (Chief Editor) from Eastern Kentucky University, Jody Baker (Design) from Oklahoma, Laura Porter (Final Editor) from Carolina, and Brooke Burk (Content Recruitment) from SUNY Cortland. In the future, we hope add a few more people to this team. The publication process starts with calls for content submissions and the soliciting of submissions from various individuals as needed. Through NRPA feedback and field trends we attempt to solicit content that is engaging, accurate and timely. We then go through a writing and review process that results in a draft that is distributed to the YPN board and a selection of others including our newly appointed Final Copy Editor. From this point on, all feedback and comments are combined and sent for final design and voila’, a final draft is ready to go out to the YPN Leadership group where it’s first distributed for viewer eyes. The last step in the process is digital distribution to all NRPA Networks! With that, I hope you enjoy this edition of “The Young Professional.” Please keep in mind that this publication is designed for all students and young professionals, so we encourage you to share “The Young Professional” with any students or young professionals you know in the field and encourage them to join NRPA and YPN if they haven’t already. Moving forward, what topics would you like to see featured in the next issue of "The Young Professional”? If there is anything that you would like to see included or would like to contribute for future editions, please let us know. Thomas Venniro 2012-2013 NRPA YPN Chair Tom Venniro Recreation Supervisor Chili Recreation Department 4400 Buffalo Rd North Chili, NY 14514 (585) 889-4680 (585) 594-3509 (fax) tvenniro@townofchili.org

January 29th, 2013 - Southeast Area Landscape Training

We are excited about the upcoming fourth annual Southeast Area Landscape Training planned for Waycross on February 8, 2013. We have a great program this year offering several types of recertification credits and educational break-out sessions. You can find the registration info online at http://tinyurl.com/bdatep5 Southeast Area Landscape Training Thursday, February 7, 2013 Okefenokee Technical College - Waycross, GA Registration fee is $50 ~ Lunch is included Earn up to 4 hours of GA Commercial Pesticide Applicator (Cat 24) or FNGLA Credit Earn 3.5 hours ISA credit Earn up to 5 hours Florida Pesticide Credit Find registration info online or call the Office of Economic Development – (912) 287-5854 or (912) 287-5856 or e-mail jrubenbauer@okefenokeetech.edu.

January 18th, 2013 - Call for GRPA Conference Sessions

We realize that we are just getting into 2013 but it's never too early to begin planning for this year's annual conference and trade show. The annual conference committee wants to make sure that all attendees have great session options during our conference in Columbus. The session proposal form is attached to this story and everyone is encouraged to submit possible sessions. The person submitting the proposal form should always make sure that the speaker is willing to teach the session before submitting the form. The deadline to submit these proposals is MARCH 1ST and submittal information is included on the form. Let's make the 2013 GRPA conference the best ever!

January 18th, 2013 - 2013 Mandatory Swim/Track Meeting Schedule Announced

Per the rules and regulations included in the GRPA Athletic Manual, any agency wishing to participate in the state track meet or the state swim meet is required to attend one of the orientation meetings. While it is mandatory for a staff person to attend, it is also recommended that your team’s coach also attend to make them aware of the GRPA rules. A complete listing of every meeting is included in the attachment. They are also listed individually on the GRPA calendar.

January 7th, 2013 - Gwinnett County P & R to host Playground Maintenance Safety Program

Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation Department will be hosting a 2 day Playground Maintenance Safety Training program at George Pierce Park Community Center in Suwanee. The attached course brochure includes a tentative schedule and registration information.

November 30th, 2012 - J.W. "Bud" Stone Inducted into GRPA Hall of Fame

The pioneers of the recreation movement in Georgia established many valuable inroads to the management of recreation services. J.W. “Bud” Stone was one of those pioneers which has led to his posthumous induction into the GRPA Hall of Fame at the 2012 Annual Conference. In the years Bud served in the recreation profession in Georgia, he established lasting influences on young professionals while continuing to guide those who were becoming leaders in our rapidly changing profession. Bud contributed mightily to the research and knowledge of facility construction and management. Born in Wrens, Georgia, he graduated from Wrens High School and immediately joined the US Marine Corps and served in the Pacific theatre. After his honorable service, he enrolled at Georgia Teachers College on the GI Bill and graduated with a degree in Health and Physical Education. In 1956-60 Bud served the unexpired term of Clayton Deavers as the President of the Georgia Recreation Society. Bud was a consistent supporter of programs developed by the Society, specifically the Georgia Youth Workshop and the athletic and aquatics programs. Bud gave sound advice and forward-thinking expertise to the maintenance and management of swimming pools and programs based on his interest, training, and experience. He was an innovator of aquatics programs (like synchronized swimming in a public recreation venue) which he instituted and shared as programs began to develop around the state. He became Recreation Director for the City of Sylvania. One of his pioneering ideas was that he felt that there was a relationship between school systems and recreation programs. Bud was proactive in the establishment of statewide leagues, primarily through the Georgia Recreation Society to facilitate opportunities for play throughout the state. The result of his foresight gave rise to the establishment of what we now know as the state athletic committee. He became the first Recreation Director of Commerce where he was focused on two areas of enhancement for the delivery of recreation programs, 1) in the joint sponsorship of the construction of facilities and 2) the development of programs for teens and girls. Bud Stone was one of the initiators’ of the State Youth Workshop, an early program which gave credence to the sharing of information on programs for children and youth. This program was led by Claude Lewis, Roy Hammond, Bud, and others. Bud had a significant leadership role helping to establish an annual conference for the purpose of spreading knowledge and skills among professionals in our growing organization. Bud also served as the Director for Cordele/Crisp County. He was appointed to the Georgia Recreation Commission by Governor Carl Sanders as the only professional member to the Commission. It is well documented that the Commission is the single greatest influence on the professional growth of recreation departments in the history of Georgia and Bud was recognized as the “voice of the professional” on the Commission. The youngster swimming in today’s GRPA State swim meet or playing on the modern version of a multiple field athletic complex can thank the pioneers who had vision and passion to lay the foundation on which programs today are built. J.W. “Bud” Stone deserves this long overdue induction into the GRPA Hall of Fame and into his place beside other pioneers in our profession.

November 30th, 2012 - Vicki Pilgrim Inducted in to GRPA Hall of Fame

In the early 1980’s Vicki Pilgrim had a vision for a Senior Olympics event that she led to reality in 1983. It was this vision and her untiring efforts that have led to her induction into the GRPA Hall of Fame at the 2012 Annual Conference. This year marks the successful completion of the 29th Georgia Golden Olympics, the program that she envisioned and help grow from a handful of participants to one of the most successful events in the nation. The success of the Georgia Golden Olympics is a direct result of her leadership and efforts. Vicki retired from The Georgia Department of Human Resources Health Promotion Section where, for 34 years, she championed healthy lifestyles – long before it was “in vogue”. She travelled the state assisting senior centers, recreation departments, nursing homes, assisted living centers and other audiences she could find to initiate, develop, and expand programs and activities for senior adults. Her passion was to ensure that programs were well run and that they provided quality services. She fed that passion by making sure that training was available to individuals on the front lines of programs. She helped organize numerous workshops and events including the annual Georgia Cardiovascular Health Conference, the CDC’s National Conferences on Disease Prevention, the Georgia School Nutrition Council’s Conference, and numerous sessions at GRPA, NRPA, Edith Upchurch Forum, and for many other groups. She has authored articles on healthy lifestyles for the GRPA magazine, numerous newsletters, and she contributed freely to hundreds of DHR publications. Her expertise is widely recognized, as is shown by the number of times she is acknowledged as a contributor in publications. Over the past 35+ years, Vicki has supported GRPA in numerous capacities. She has served many times on almost all committees as a representative of the Therapeutic Section, Senior Adult Section, or District 7. She served multiple terms as a Section Chair and Board of Trustees member where her clam reasoning was essential to decisions that shaped GRPA – especially the decision to hire our first Executive Director. She actually lead the process to form the Senior Adult Section to bring those working in senior programs together to share ideas and to have the membership base necessary to expand the offerings of the section. Although retired from the DHR, she continues to lead the Georgia Golden Olympics as the Executive Director of the not-for-profit organization. She is constantly seeking to improve the program and ensure participants who qualify have the opportunity to participate at the national level. Among us, there are many individuals who do their jobs well, and a few who make notable achievements. However, we rarely have the opportunity to work with someone who quietly, yet profoundly has impacted the lives of thousands of Georgians and who has paved the way for all those who have yet to reach the “Senior Adult” age.

November 21st, 2012 - Dr. Patterson Awarded 2012 Mike Daniel Award

The 2012 Mike Daniel Programming Award was recently presented to Gwinnett County's Dr. Mark Patterson. Mark serves as his department's Conservation Parks District Operations Coordinator. He also serves on the GRPA Board of Trustees as the Outdoor Section Chair. In the recreation field for over 25 years, spending most of these years in recreation programming, Mark has a passion for sharing his wealth of knowledge and expertise with others. From Adult Athletics – 25 years ago to Natural Resource Management today. Dr. Mark as fondly called by his students, peers and staff….programs to create a park system that preserves the land, manages the lakes and forest, and protects the wildlife, not for you and me, but for future generations to enjoy! Although his title NO longer includes programmer, Mark continues to communicate, teach and share his passion with those around him, exemplifying a programmer at heart. In making the award presentation, Gwinnett County Division Director Tina Fleming added, "I found the following quote and I believe it defines the career of Dr. Mark Patterson, 'Enjoying success requires the ability to adapt. ONLY being open to change will you have the TRUE opportunity to get the MOST from your talents!' Nolan Ryan. Luckily for Gwinnett County Parks & Recreation and the Citizens of Gwinnett County and for GRPA, over the past 25 years Mark has continue to grow, learn and ADAPT as any good programmer should – Therefore we have ALL continued to reap the benefits of his MANY Talents!" Please join us in congratulating Dr. Mark Patterson for receiving the 2012 GRPA Mike Daniel Award!

November 15th, 2012 - Canon Awarded GRPA Distinguished Professional for 2012

The highest professional award that GRPA bestows on one of it's members is the distinguished professional award. At the recent 2012 GRPA Annual Conference, Cobb County Director Eddie Canon received this prestigious award. Eddie is a thirty (30) year member of the Association having served in various leadership roles during his tenure. A graduate of West Georgia College in Carrollton with a B.S degree in Recreation Administration, Eddie’s distinguished 30 year career in the profession has provided leadership of vision and great passion. He has learned and he has taught that it doesn’t pay to be a sensitive soul, that a wise man should let some things go over his head like water off a duck’s back, that buck-passing always turns out to be a boomerang and it never pays, that it doesn’t matter so much who gets the credit as long the job gets done, to sympathize with the new professional coming into the field, because he remembers how bewildered he was when he first started. Gainesville Director, former GRPA distinguished professional, and GRPA Hall of Fame member Melvin Cooper presented Canon's award and added, "In my personal experience, I have found our recipient to be a leader; a man of strong values, of credibility, one with discipline and integrity; one who listens, one who respects and is respected and one who leads by example." Eddie’s leadership and active professional involvement is varied and impressive. His name is synonymous with GRPA and is well known in the ranks for getting the job done in a quiet behind the scenes manner. From having served on or chaired many GRPA committees to leading and chairing a number of the Association’s Annual Conference Committees. His reach of professional involvement transcends the local level to his participation at the regional and national level as well. Eddie truly epitomizes that spirit of community through his dedication and commitment to not only his profession, but equally to community and family. He is highly active and involved in the civic and community life, having served as a Team Captain for his County’s Relay for Life; a very active member at the First Baptist Church in his home town; and President of the High School Touchdown Club. His most prized accomplishment is that of loving husband and father. Since the beginning of his recreational career, Eddie’s service and contributions to the profession as a whole have been marked with dedication and achievement. Please join us in congratulating Eddie on this much deserved award!

November 14th, 2012 - GRPA District 1 Banquet Recently Held

The GRPA First District held it’s annual Awards and Installation Banquet in October in Midville, GA. With the majority of the district’s agencies in attendance, the night was filled with fun, food and friends. After a filling meal, the Awards Ceremony began with the presentation of Service Awards. These awards are given at 10 years of service and each 5 year interval thereafter. Two individuals have reached their 10 year mark…Tony Morgan, Parks Division Manager with Statesboro-Bulloch; and Kimberly Sharpe, Special Events Coordinator also with Statesboro-Bulloch Parks. At the 15 year mark, three individuals accepted their awards: Kenny White, Director of Hawkinsville-Pulaski; Darryl Hopkins, Superintendent of Athletics at Statesboro-Bulloch ; and Misty Sroczynski, Marketing and IT Resource Supervisor with Augusta Parks and Recreation. With 20 years under their belt, Randy “Spook” Spivey, Athletic Superintendent with Dublin-Laurens; and Ronnie Melton, Athletic Supervisor with Statesboro-Bulloch accepted their Service Awards. Jumping just a few years to 40 years , we have a Retired Member, Buck Salter from Augusta Parks and Recreation receiving his 40 year Service Award. At 45 years, Clarence Morgan, Director of Effingham County Recreation was presented his Service Award. And lastly, Anson Callaway, Director of Lyons Recreation Department, received his 50-year Service Award. Craig Johnson, a volunteer for the Effingham County Recreation Department (ECPRD), was presented with the Volunteer of the Year award by ECRPD. Bo Bishop of Daniels-Bishop Chevrolet was presented Lay Member of the Year by the Twin City Recreation Department. Innovative/New Program Awards were then presented to the Dublin-Laurens County Recreation Authority Adult Co-Ed Kickball League and to the Statesboro-Bulloch County Parks and Recreation Department’s Holiday Helping Hands program. Sportsmanship Awards are given to agencies who exhibit the best sportsmanship in district competition throughout the year. In Class B, the Swainsboro-Emanuel County Parks and Recreation Department was presented the award and Class C was presented to the Screven County Recreation Department. Two Leadership Awards were given to staff who have been most instrumental in creating, starting, and/or supervising programs that benefited their respective community and brought praise to the department. Jeffrey Lonon, Athletic Coordinator for the Effingham County Recreation Department and Alison Brown, Program Supervisor for the Statesboro-Bulloch County Parks and Recreation Department both accepted the Leadership Awards. The most coveted awards for agencies are the Agency of the Year Awards. Agency Awards are given to agencies that have made significant contributions in the area of leisure services to their communities. They have also involved their department in GRPA on both the state and district levels. In Class C, Eastman-Dodge County Recreation Department was awarded Agency of the Year. The Lyons Recreation Department was awarded the Agency of the Year for Class B. Next, the Connie Kight Senior Adult Programming Award was presented to the Statesboro-Bulloch County Parks and Recreation Department. Connie Kight, a program coordinator for the Swainsboro-Emanuel Recreation Department enjoyed working with her local senior adults and involved them in many state programs. Connie, well known for her commitment to senior adults throughout the state of Georgia, pass away in 1995 while serving as Chairman of the GRPA's State Therapeutic/Senior Citizen Committee--a committee she had served for over 5 years. In memory of her dedication and hard work with the senior adult programs, this award is presented for an exemplary senior adult program in the First District. Director Anson Callaway was named the First District Distinguished Professional of the Year. This is the highest honor given to a member of the District and recognizes an individual who has made outstanding and lasting contributions to the recreation profession at all levels. While in and out of the recreation department for many years while he coached and taught Physical Education, the man we affectionately call “Coach” remained steadfast in his career of teaching children skills in baseball, basketball, football and more importantly—life. “Coach” has touched numerous lives with his caring spirit and has been an inspiration to countless men and women. He is a devoted husband, father, and grandfather—while continuing to serve his community as possibly the longest-standing Recreation Director in the state of Georgia. After many door prizes were awarded from contributing agencies, First District Commissioner Darryl Hopkins recognized the 2012 committee members and installed the 2013 officers. The 2013 officers are as follows: Darryl Hopkins, Commissioner; Dadrian Cosby, Annual Conference; Truman Anderson & Clarence Morgan, Athletics; Broni Gainous, Awards and Visibility; Misty Sroczynski, Documents and Technology; Jeffrey Lonon, Leadership; Tommy Sasser, Membership; Nora Lamb, Public Policy; and Sherrie Zeigler, Editorial. The District was very fortunate to have GRPA Executive Director Jimmy Gisi join us for the evening. “We’d like to thank Jimmy for showing his support for our agencies with his presence and his words of encouragement,” said Hopkins.

November 13th, 2012 - Gwinnett County Parks & Recreation Named Excellence in Youth Sports Award winner

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga./Oct. 24, 2012 – The National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) today announced Gwinnett County Parks & Recreation as a 2012 Excellence in Youth Sports Award winner. The prestigious award, presented in part with Athletic Business magazine, recognizes youth sports programs that are doing superior jobs of conducting diverse activities with a focus on providing safe and positive experiences for the children, parents and coaches involved. Gwinnett County was chosen from more than 100 youth sports programs that submitted applications from recreation departments, independent sports leagues and military bases around the world. In addition to their dedication to providing safe sporting experiences to the youth in the community, their unique initiatives to promote sportsmanship among both youth players and adult volunteers helped them stand out among the other submissions. Gwinnett County will be presented with their award during the NAYS Youth Sports Congress in New Orleans, La. during Nov.28-Dec. 1. “Life-long skills are often learned at a young age. We applaud Gwinnett County for their commitment to providing the children with positive, rewarding opportunities through youth sports,” said John Engh, chief operating officer at NAYS. Founded in 1981, the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) is America's leading advocate for positive, safe sports and activities for children. The non-profit 501(c)(3) organization is headquartered in West Palm Beach, Florida. More than 3,000 community-based youth sport programs across the country use NAYS programs and services for everyone involved in youth sports experiences, including professional administrators, volunteer administrators, volunteer coaches, officials, parents and young athletes. For more information visit www.nays.org.

October 24th, 2012 - 2013 GRPA State Championship Host Bids Now Being Accepted

Please find attached the 2013 GRPA State Tournament/Meet Bid Form and Site Information Sheet for any agency interested in bidding on a 2013 State Event. Please pass the information on to the person responsible for athletic events at your agency. The bid sheet is to be used for both adult and youth state events. Use a separate sheet for each tournament request. Along with the Bid Form is a Site Information Sheet. Both must be filled out. A list of dates for all GRPA State tournaments/meets is also attached. Please note that one form must be enclosed for EACH individual tournament/meet bid. For all individual sports, please specify the number of tennis courts, track info, swimming information and any other specific facility information that would be beneficial in helping us determine the best sites. Completed bids must be submitted by November 9, 2012 to the following address: James Dodson State Athletic Committee Chair 202 N. Davis Drive, PMB 718 Warner Robins, GA 31093 jrdodson@wrga.gov Please mark the outside of the envelope with the following: "GRPA State Tournament Bid" They can also be faxed to the Chair at 478-929-6959. Each agency that submits a bid should have a representative at the GRPA President’s Assembly (December 3rd in Griffin) to present your agency’s bid and to answer any questions about your community, agency and facilities for the bid process. Each Agency will have a 3-minute time limit per sport to make their presentation and 1-minute for any other same sport bid after the first. The President’s Assembly will be held at the UGA-Griffin Campus, 1109 Experiment Street, Griffin, Georgia 30223 The Athletic Committee will meet on December 3rd from 9 am to 5 pm (Business Meeting followed by the tournament bids). Adult event bids are normally handled late morning and youth event bids are handled immediately following lunch.

August 7th, 2012 - Leisure Careers Foundation Duffer's Delight Sponsorship Opportunities

With the conference in Athens right around the corner we would like to take this opportunity to invite you to be a sponsor for one of the largest attended events that will take place. The 27th annual “Duffer’s Delight” golf tournament is sponsored by the Leisure Careers Foundation and will take place on Monday November 5th at the renowned Georgia Club. The GRPA Leisure Careers Foundation provides continuing education scholarships for GRPA professionals. Please take a look at the attached sponsorship opportunities and sign up early to reserve a sponsor slot for this worthwhile event! You can send checks to the address listed below or contact the GRPA office if you are interested in paying with a credit card. Please make checks out to: LCF- Duffers Delight. If you plan to take advantage of playing in the tournament I have also attached a registration form. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me. Thanks in advance for your consideration for sponsorship. Steve Card, CPRP Director Dalton Parks and Recreation Department 904 Civic Drive Dalton, GA 30720 706-278-5404- office 706-463-9656- cell

June 28th, 2012 - State Tournament Brackets Now On-Line

New in 2012 is the ability for state tournament hosts to post their brackets on the GRPA website. Simply click on the "Athletics" tab and then on the "State Tournament Brackets" tab to see all of the brackets that have been submitted to the GRPA office. We will be able to update these brackets during the tournaments when the updated brackets are e-mailed to the GRPA office. This can serve as a great resource for parents and grand-parents following tournaments across the state.

May 22nd, 2012 - Pool ADA Accessibility Deadline Extended

On May 18, 2012, the Department announced that it is adopting a final rule extending the compliance date for sections 242 and 1009 of the 2010 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Standards for Accessible Design, as they relate to the provision of accessible entry and exit to existing swimming pools, wading pools, and spas (pools built before March 15, 2012). These provisions for existing pools of title II and title III entities will now take effect on January 31, 2013. The final rule does not affect the March 15, 2012 effective date for newly constructed or altered pools. For more information, cut and paste the following link into your web browser: http://www.ada.gov/regs2010/ADAregs2012/finalrule_existingpools_FR_may21.htm

May 15th, 2012 - Thad Studstill Conference Scholarship Now Available

The GRPA Leisure Careers Foundation is now accepting applications for the Thad Studstill Conference Scholarship until August 31st. All expenses including registration, meals, lodging, and mileage will be reimbursed to the lucky winner when receipts are turned into the LCF after the conference. This scholarship is a great way to attend conference this year at no cost to you.

May 14th, 2012 - State Track Class A Results

May 8th, 2012 - State Track Class B/C Results

May 2nd, 2012 - Gwinnett County to Host Youth Sports Expo

The Gwinnett County Parks and Recreation will again be hosting the Youth Sports Expo this year on July 28, 2012. We would like to thank you for your support in 2011 and encourage you to attend this year’s event. This year’s event will again be the largest youth sports expo of its kind in the state and will be open to members of Youth Athletic Associations and youth sports service organizations from all over the state of Georgia. It is our goal to offer an educational opportunity and exposure to industry related vendors so that our Youth Athletic Associations and other youth sports providers across the state can become stronger and more successful. You will have opportunities to earn CEU credits by attending educational sessions on Field/Facility Management and Operations; Youth Sports Management and Coaching; Marketing and Customer Service; Volunteers; Financial and Risk Management; and many more. In addition, there will be an Expo Exhibit Hall, lunch and silent auction to benefit the Scholarship Fund administered by the Gwinnett Parks Foundation. To register online, copy and paste the following into your web browser: https://www.gwinnettcounty.com/sec/portal/gwinnett/Departments/CommunityServices/ParksandRecreation/BrowseandRegister/gc-docs-parks-recreation-portletWindow?_kraview=1&action=e&windowstate=normal&_spageview=%2Fep%2FparkDetail.do%3FactivityNumber%3DEXPO20121&mode=view

April 5th, 2012 - Instructor Classification Survey Results Posted

In February, all GRPA agencies were asked to take part in a survey on how they classify their instructors...either as an independent contractor or an employee. Responses from 78 agencies were received and as promised, we are posting the results of the survey. The survey was prepared by the City of Kennesaw who is currently undergoing an IRS audit. They also compiled the results. An update on their audit is below: "Just an update on our audit... the IRS has concluded that “[our City] has the right to exercise the necessary amount of direction, control, and supervision over the services the instructors perform to establish an employment relationship. Therefore, the instructors in the Parks and Recreation Department are employees of the City rather than independent contractors. For federal employment tax purposes, the workers should be treated as employees of the City.” Obviously, we do not agree with this conclusion based on the three common law rules (formerly the 20 common law factors) that provide evidence of the degree of control and independence. We are appealing the IRS decision and/or seeking “safe harbor relief” under section 530 of the Revenue Act of 1978, which states that even if instructors do not qualify as independent contractors they may be treated as such. Agencies may qualify for safe harbor relief to treat recreation class instructors as independent contractors if: · There is a long-standing industry practice of treating individuals in similar positions as independent contractors (which the Instructor Classification has helped to demonstrate); · The agency has not treated the instructor as an employee in the past; · All prior federal tax returns have been filed on a basis consistent with treating the worker as an independent contractor; and · No other worker holding a substantially similar position is treated by the agency as an employee. We firmly believe that our agency meet these factors."

March 13th, 2012 - 2012 GRPA State Swim Meet - Class A - Packet

March 13th, 2012 - 2012 GRPA State Swim Meet - Class B/C - Packet

March 3rd, 2012 - 2012 GRPA Class B Mite Girls Basketball Final Bracket - Tift County

The GRPA Girls Mite Class B Youth Basketball has been completed in Tift County. The Champion is Walton Co and the Runner up is Calhoun. We hope everyone enjoyed their stay in Tift County. Please come again. TCRD Staff

February 22nd, 2012 - Georgia Games District Sports Festivals

Dear Colleagues: It is 2012 and the Georgia Games District Sports Festival Season is just around the corner. We hope that many GRPA members will host one or several events in their local area as a Georgia Games District Sports Festival. Please feel free to contact me with any questions. We have attached the forms to this story and the information can be entered directly into the PDF documents. The deadline to submit the forms is March 15, 2012. Many Thanks! Sincerely, Eric Pfeifer Executive Director Georgia State Games Commission PO Box 2043, Kennesaw, GA 30156 Direct 770-528-3580 exdirector@georgiagames.org www.georgiagames.org

January 13th, 2012 - Dates and Locations Released for Mandatory Swim/Track Meetings

The GRPA State Athletic Committee recently approved the list of dates and locations for the 2012 mandatory swim/track orientation meetings. An agency planning to participate in either the state swim meet or the state track meet must attend one of these meetings for each team (i.e. if an agency plans to have their swim team and track team participate in the state meets, they must attend one of the swim meetings and one of the track meetings). Failure to attend one of these meetings will result in a $200 fine. While it is mandatory for a staff person to attend, it is also highly recommended that the swim team or track team coach also attend.

December 16th, 2011 - Clayton County Parks and Recreation Earns National Accreditation

The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) would like to announce that the Clayton County Parks and Recreation Department has become one of only 99 parks and recreation agencies accredited by the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) this year. This distinguished accomplishment was announced during the NRPA 2011 Annual Congress in Atlanta. National accreditation through CAPRA is an extensive multi-year process, which includes the completion of an application and detailed self-assessment report, a site visit by a committee of experienced park and recreation professionals, and a final assessment completed by the agency and the Commission. Accreditation requires agencies to respond to 144 standards representing elements of effective and efficient park and recreation operations. To become accredited, agencies must fully meet 36 standards deemed fundamental to a quality agency and at least 92 of the remaining standards. CAPRA accreditation is the only national accreditation for park and recreation agencies, and is a measure of an agency's overall quality of operation, management and services to the community. Accreditation is valid for a period of five years. The Commission is comprised of representatives from NRPA, the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration, the National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials, the International City/County Management Association, the American Association for Physical Activity and Recreation, the Armed Forces Recreation Society and the Council of State Executive Directors. Clayton County Parks and Recreation Department Director Detrick Stanford added, "This NRPA accreditation is a true testament to the hard work of our staff and the leadership and support of our Board of Commissioners. By working together, we strive to offer the highest quality services and programs to the residents of Clayton County." "By successfully completing the CAPRA accreditation process, Clayton County has proven their ability to provide the highest level services and programs. NRPA truly commends them for their overall excellence in servicing their community and contributing to the health and vitality of America" added Barbara Tulipane, CEO of NRPA. The Georgia Recreation and Park Association would also like to add their congratulations to the Clayton County department for their hard work and diligence in completing this process and for offering a quality and comprehensive program to her residents.

November 4th, 2011 - American Camp Association National Conference Coming to Atlanta

Professionals from a range of fields including youth development, camp, education, recreation, and out-of-school will converge in Atlanta this February for four days of education and networking. Featured keynoters include Christine Carter, Richard Louv and Roderick Lucero. On Wednesday, February 22, a special Children and Nature Symposium, featuring Richard Louv, will be offered as part of the program. Area GRPA members are invited to participate on Wednesday at significantly reduced rates, including $39 for a half day and $79 for the full day (7.75 ACA CEC’s). With more than 140 sessions offered covering a broad range of topics, a full exhibit hall, on-site resource center, and meaningful networking, we encourage you to considering registering for all or a portion of the ACA 2012 event. To learn more, visit: http://www.acacamps.org/conference. To register using the GRPA offer, use the attached registration form.

October 14th, 2011 - 2011 National Senior League Wii Bowling Championship

ATLANTA, Ga.: Wii bowling strikes and spares will become much more important on October 18th when the UnbeWiiVables from Margaret Schweinhaut Senior Center, Silver Spring, MD take on the Happy Strikers from The Active Life, LaGrange, Ga. The teams will compete at the LeadingAge Annual Meeting in Washington, DC to decide the NSL’s national senior Wii Bowling Champion. What started out with 104 teams from 21 states seeking to claim the NSL title has now been whittled down to the two best Wii bowling teams in the nation. Teams representing independent senior living communities, CCRC’s, assisted living communities, rehab centers, affordable housing communities and senior centers competed for the crown. The UnbeWiiVables are led by Bob Brigham, an NSL Wii Bowler of the Year. Brigham averaged an unimaginable 298 during league play and had 16 perfect games. Of the five Wii bowlers on the DC based team, none averaged less than 278. As good a Wii bowling team as they are, the UnbeWiiValbles were bested in total pins by their opponent from central Georgia. The Happy Strikers knocked down 96 more pins during league play. They are led by another NSL Wii Bowler of the Year, Evelyn Kelly. Kelly averaged 294 and Wii bowled her way to 11 perfect games. Teammate Hazel Sellers backs up Kelly averaging 291. NSL President, Dennis Berkholtz, created the NSL in 2009. Since that time the league has hosted 4 NSL national Wii bowling championships and 2 national Wii golf tournaments. In 2011 more than 1,200 Wii bowlers participated in the NSL spring and fall championships. LeadingAge along with Aegis Therapies is sponsoring the final match. Berkholtz is looking forward to the NSL’s relationship with LeadingAge and Aegis Therapies. He commented, “Having LeadingAge and Aegis Therapies as sponsors of the championship match can only help us spread the word about the benefits the NSL brings to senior communities. The league provides great fun, a competitive spirit, a fitness opportunity and a social environment for Wii bowlers.”

October 12th, 2011 - Special GRPA Rates at Upcoming NAYS Youth Sports Congress

West Palm Beach, Fla./October 11, 2011 – The National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) is offering members of the Georgia Recreation and Park Association exclusive pricing for registration for the NAYS Youth Sports Congress taking place in Orlando, Fla. Nov. 30-Dec. 3. GRPA members can save their spot to the Congress for $299, which is a savings of up to $126 per registrant. This special pricing is valid until Nov. 15. Each year the Congress’ innovative educational sessions and networking opportunities attracts hundreds of youth sports professionals from park and recreation agencies across the country – and this year’s line-up will not disappoint. 2011 Youth Sports Congress Sessions • How to Handle Hard to Handle Parents – Physicians of Phun • Risk Management in Youth Sports: How to Reduce the Frequency and Severity of Claims – International Amusement & Leisure Defense Association • Overview and Insights into Preventing Sports Injuries in Youth – STOP Sports Injuries • Bullying has NO Place in Kids Sports – Andrew Zitoli • Excellence in Youth Sports – National Alliance for Youth Sports • Travel/Elite Programs – Are they Ruining Recreational Sports – National Alliance for Youth Sports • Screening Volunteers – A Working Session to Update the National Guidelines – Protect Youth Sports The Academy for Youth Sports Administrators will also hold a special track for front-line professionals who oversee youth sports and who are interested in earning the Certified Youth Sports Administrator (CYSA) credential while at Congress. In addition to enjoying the benefits of being a Congress delegate, attendees will also have access to several of the great Athletic Business Conference events, including the keynote presentation by Bill Walton, Hall of Fame basketball great and former television broadcaster, welcome reception and the Expo. Take advantage today of the special Congress registration pricing for GRPA members. For more information visit www.nays.org/congress, email yscongress@nays.org or call (800) 688-KIDS (5437). Founded in 1981, the National Alliance for Youth Sports (NAYS) is America's leading advocate for positive, safe sports and activities for children. The non-profit 501(c)(3) organization is headquartered in West Palm Beach, Florida. More than 3,000 community-based youth sport programs across the country use NAYS programs and services for everyone involved in youth sports experiences, including professional administrators, volunteer administrators, volunteer coaches, officials, parents and young athletes.

August 31st, 2011 - Roger K. Brown Inducted into GRPA Hall of Fame

At the recent GRPA Annual Conference, long time recreator Roger K. Brown became the 39th member of the Georgia Recreation and Park Association Hall of Fame. Roger received his bachelor’s degree from Georgia Southern University and began his career as the Director of Parks and Recreation for the City of Calhoun. After brief stints as the recreation director in Aiken, SC and Durham, NC, where he received his master’s degree from the University of North Carolina, Roger became the first southeast regional director of the National Recreation and Park Association. After serving NRPA and then as the director of the City of Miami Beach, FL, Roger became the director of the parks and recreation department in Greensboro, NC. Under his 15 years of leadership, the Greensboro department received numerous awards including the National Gold Medal Award for Excellence in the field of parks and recreation management in 1979 and 1987. Roger retired from Greensboro in 1992 and to honor his work there, the City Council named a new recreation center for him. After his retirement, he was coaxed into moving across the country to Portland, Oregon to be Director of the Clackamas Parks and Recreation District where he served for 5 years. During Roger’s professional career, he served in the following capacities: President of the North Carolina Recreation and Park Society, President of the American Park and Recreation Society, Chairman of the NRPA Trustees’ National Council, Member of the NRPA Board of Trustees, President of the National Recreation and Park Association, appointed by NRPA as its official representative to the International Federation of Parks and Recreation Administration (IFPRA). In the international arena, Roger served as President of the IFPRA for 5 ½ years. He was also responsible for bringing the IFPRA Congress to the United States for the first time in 1989. IFPRA Executive Director Alan Smith credits Roger’s forward thinking with “saving” the organization. Upon completion of his term as President, the organization recognized his contributions by selecting him a life member of the IFPRA Board. GRPA Hall of Fame member John Davis added the following comments on Roger Brown, “Having been a member of GRPS and GRPA during his tenure in the state and with NRPA plus his outstanding accomplishments in the field of recreation on the local, state, national, and international level, it would be unthinkable to not have such a highly decorated professional in our Hall of Fame as he got his start here with us.” Congratulations Mr. Brown and welcome to the GRPA Hall of Fame.

August 26th, 2011 - Marvin Billups Inducted into GRPA Hall of Fame

The GRPA Hall of Fame has it's 38th member. Dekalb County Parks and Recreation Department Deputy Director Marvin Billups was inducted into the Hall of Fame on August 18th at the recent annual conference. GRPA and NRPA board member provided the following comments while conducting the induction ceremony: “Few of us can do great things, but all of us can do small things with great love.” …Mother Teresa That quote embodies the philosophy of our Honoree this afternoon. It’s with great pleasure that I introduce the newest member of the Georgia Recreation and Park Association HALL of FAME. When we look up the word “pioneer” it describes one who is first among the earliest in any field of endeavor, enterprise, or progress. The individual is often described as a trailblazer, a custodian of change, or even legendary. Our Inductee would not describe himself as such, however many of our great past Inductees, who have worked with him, would. Our Inductee has God-given talents to change the paradigm and provide a new outlook on things, even when the status quo is acceptable. Motivational speaker and writer John Maxwell would refer to him as a “Possibility Thinker,” but I’ll revise that and refer to him as a “Leader of Possibilities.” He began his illustrious path to becoming one of the most respected park and recreation professionals in the nation as a graduate of Albany State College, earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Health and Physical Education. Shortly after graduation, he took a teaching position and coached middle school basketball. Not sure if he had an impact on the current NBA lockout, but to our benefit he left this position, without an offer on the table, and turned his attention to Parks and Recreation. When asked why Parks and Recreation he simply responded, “I realized I could make a great impact by serving my community.” Now, with over 40-plus years in the profession, he’s even more committed to service today than ever. Marvin F. Billups, Jr. has committed his life to service in many communities not only in Georgia, but throughout the nation. The following represent just a few of his contributions and just some of the positions he has held along the way: His journey began in 1967, with the City of Atlanta as a Recreation Supervisor, where he held several positions within the Department, including Acting Director. He has also served as Director in the City of Charlotte, North Carolina; Division Chief in Prince George County, Maryland; and Director in the City of Baltimore, Maryland. He presently serves as Deputy Director for DeKalb County Parks and Recreation. His accomplishments and the leadership positions he has held are just as impressive and include: President of the National Recreation and Park Association; member of the Board of Directors of the American Recreation and Park Society; President of the Maryland Recreation and Park Association; as well as President of the Georgia Recreation and Park Association in 1980. His many awards include: The National Park Service Recreation Award; the Governor’s Distinguished Service Award – State of Georgia; and the Georgia Recreation and Park Society Citation of Devoted Leadership. He also serves in a leadership capacity for several civic associations. As I read the many accolades from the distinguished professionals, who provided insight into Marvin’s contributions to our profession -- Dewey McClain, Dr. Charley Exley, and Mike Perry -- they all had one common theme: individual accomplishment has been of no significance to Marvin. He would rather talk about the number of people he’s met and the relationships he has fostered because of it. Marvin is never lost for words of wisdom, whether talking about life’s successes or its challenges. This analogy best describes Marvin’s take on accomplishments – the greatest and most inspiring mountain climbing achievements in history are not so much about stories of individual achievement, but stories of the extraordinary power of a united, talented, and prepared team that stays loyally committed to one another and to their shared vision to the end. This analogy, in my estimation, represents Marvin’s viewpoint on the professionals who work in the leisure service field. Those of us who have had the privilege of working with or for Marvin understand his commitment and love for people and our profession. Remember, I referred earlier to Marvin being a Leader of Possibilities. One of the greatest lessons learned, early on, for me was that he taught me to always be professional, even when being professional is not expected. Breaking down barriers of discriminatory thinking isn’t easy, whether you are talking race, gender, religious beliefs, or even being a park and recreation professional. So, whether meeting potential partners for programs or sitting across the table from my counterparts in government, he taught me to always remember this principle – repeat after me – “Anticipate the question and be ready with the answer.” When you are humble, credible, and have a heart to serve, then God can use you anywhere. And, if you maintain the right attitude you will be content to be used wherever God puts you. Marvin has lived by this credo. I’ll leave you with a couple of quotes from Albert Einstein, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1921, when he asserted “Only a life lived in service to others is worth living” and “Great leadership means great service, leaders add value by serving others.” If you believe these assertions, then Marvin F. Billups, Jr. reflects what a great leader is or should be. Please join me in welcoming the 2011 Inductee to the Georgia Recreation and Park Association HALL of FAME ….. MARVIN F. BILLUPS, Jr.

August 25th, 2011 - Oconee County's Lisa Davol Named 2011 Distinguished Professional

At the recent GRPA conference in Macon, Oconee County Parks and Recreation Department Deputy Director Lisa Davol was named the GRPA 2011 Distinguished Professional. This is the highest award presented to a professional in our field in the state of Georgia. Since August 2004, Lisa has been an integral part in the growth and development of a diversified program base in Oconee County. A key player in the re-organization of the department upon the opening of the new Oconee Veterans Park, Lisa assumed the role of Deputy Director for Programs with the primary responsibility of supervising day to day park operations and development and implementing new policies and initiatives. The Program Division as a whole provides a variety of opportunities for citizens. In total, 22 youth programs and 22 youth summer sports camps are offered. Youth programs include soccer, flag football, tackle football, volleyball, cheerleading, basketball, lacrosse, wrestling, After School, Home School P.E., Summer Day Camp, Start Smart programs, along with Middle School Madness Friday night events and a High School Intramural Basketball Program. Adult programs include softball and basketball leagues, yoga, senior stretch, and flag football. Last year alone, over 5,000 youth and over 800 adults participated in our leagues and programs. In addition, Lisa’s program team managed over 1,100 volunteer coaches and she has overseen and initiated innovative and community based programming options for the community. Events include the 7th annual “Movie in the Park” with over 2,500 attendees and the sixth annual “Touch a Truck” with over 500 attendees. Other inventive programs included a Table Tennis tournament, Disc Golf Tournament, Zany Sports Camp, and a free Lacrosse Clinic. These successful endeavors led OCPRD to be selected as a 2010 award winner for the National Alliance for Youth Sports Excellence in Youth Sports award of which Lisa’s leadership played a significant factor in this honor. Lisa’s team also supports a variety of diverse community events. Events included hosting Little League State and District Tournaments, Easter Egg Hunt, 24-Hour Mountain Bike Race, Cole Brothers Circus, AKC Southeastern Dog Show, Cattleman’s Association livestock events, GAASC Dog Show, 4H Dairy Shows, Sheriff Department training, 5K and 10K Races, NFL Punt, Pass and Kick, MLB Pitch, Hit and Run, Regional Fast Pitch Softball Tournament, Dixie Dock Dogs events and Oconee County Veterans Day and Memorial Day Commemorations. Lisa is very concise and a thorough leader, and with every task she demonstrates her perseverance and proves that her character is beyond reproach. Lisa’s daily work ethic and dedication to Leisure Services has been unquestionably superb and is an absolute pleasure to work with. She is a professional in every sense of the word. Lisa’s selfless service and contributions to the department and the citizens of Oconee County is immeasurable. Her dedication to the recreation profession and betterment of the citizens of for whom she serves is evident in her daily walk; through her leadership in GRPA, her interaction with students at UGA’s Leisure Services Department, and her passion for a diversified program base in the community. Congratulations Lisa on receiving this prestigious award.

August 25th, 2011 - Gainesville's Missy Bailey Receives 2011 Mike Daniel Award

On Thursday, August 18th, Gainesville Parks and Recreation Agency Division Manager Missy Bailey was awarded the GRPA Mike Daniel award for excellence in programming. The award was presented at the awards and installation banquet at the GRPA annual conference in Macon. Below are Gainesville Director Melvin Cooper's comments in presenting Bailey with the award: It is my distinct honor and privilege to present the Georgia Recreation and Park Association’s Mike Daniel Award. The Mike Daniel Award presented annually since 1988 to the professional who exemplifies excellence at the programming level in honor and memory of Mike Daniel, a leader in GRPA who through his faith, code of ethics and professionalism inspired everyone to excel in all aspects of their lives. Former President Harry S. Truman once said, “I studied the lives of famous men and women, and I found that the men and women who got to the top were those who did the jobs they had in hand, with everything they had of energy and enthusiasm.” This year’s Mike Daniel award recipient is such a person. An individual of humility, who truly believes in the work they do and contributes to it with dignity and professionalism. Our recipient has over nineteen (19) years of experience in the parks and recreation profession, spending much of that time at the grass roots level, providing the quiet, behind the scenes leadership, commitment and dedication that has led to a positive quality of life experience for all people. Our recipient has reached beyond our traditional roles to help build the necessary networks and coalitions to meet the emerging societal issues facing our profession. Our recipient has been described by their Director as an individual of loyalty and dedication, a team player who has the ability to handle multiple priorities, problems and demanding situations. An individual that can always be counted on and a staff member that every recreation agency would love to have. Our recipients programming experience is broad and varied from their work in youth and adult athletics to being an NYSCA Clinician. The honoree is heavily involved in GRPA both on a district and state level serving on multiple committee’s in leadership positions. The honoree has been recognized in the communities in which they have worked with numerous community service awards and contributes back to the community in various volunteer capacities. Our 2011 Mike Daniel Award recipient truly exemplifies the characteristics this award embodies. It is my honor to present the 2011 Mike Daniel Award to MISSY BAILEY, Recreation Division Manager for Gainesville Parks and Recreation. Congratulations Missy on receiving this prestigious award.

August 22nd, 2011 - Tennis Champions Crowned at 2011 Conference

At each year's conference, the traditional tennis tournament is held to find GRPA's best tennis player. This year in Macon was no exception. Alpharetta's Kevin McDonald took home the crown while Johns Creek's Kirk Franz came in second and Cobb County's Jeff Crowder placed third.

August 19th, 2011 - Roswell Ramblers Play Divine Stella Devine

In this Comedy, Stella is the aging star of the popular Ritz Theatre. She and her fellow company of actors are preparing for the epic play "Civil War Darlin's," When a visit to a rehearsal changes everything! Between the director, playwright, cast, visiting reporters, & a set of twins, things get interesting quickly! By: EDDIE MCPHERSON

July 6th, 2011 - State Golf Information Packet

June 30th, 2011 - Class A Major Midget

June 29th, 2011 - Class A/B/C Mite Live & Class A Midget Girls Brackets

June 29th, 2011 - GRPA Flea Girls Pitching Machine State Information

June 28th, 2011 - Mite Girls - Class C - Bracket/Flea Boys Class C

June 27th, 2011 - GRPA Class A Junior Boys Baseball Bracket

June 22nd, 2011 - Annual Lifeguard Competition Information Released

The annual GRPA Lifeguard Competition will take place on Lake Oconee on Monday, July 25th. The competition will be held at Old Salem Park. The registration fee is $100.00 per team and early registration is due by July 15, 2011. Please see the attached packet for additional information on the competition.

June 20th, 2011 - Mens Church Equalizer Softball Bracket

June 9th, 2011 - Pitching Machine Height

Machine should be a minimum of 24" and a maximum of 36" off the ground.

May 27th, 2011 - Drain Cover Recall Could Close Thousands of Pools

WASHINGTON (USA TODAY) - The Consumer Product Safety Commission recalled about 1 million pool drain covers Thursday - a move that could result in the temporary closing of hundreds of thousands of pools across the country. CPSC Chairwoman Inez Tenenbaum urged public pools with recalled covers to close immediately until they can be replaced. She said private pool owners should contact the maker of their drain cover immediately. Full List of Recalled Pool Covers - With Pictures and Product Numbers can be found at the following web page: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml11/11230.html "I know this is a very difficult message for many communities to hear so close to Memorial Day weekend, but we cannot risk a child becoming entrapped in a recalled drain cover," Tenenbaum said in a speech at a pool safety event Thursday in Chula Vista, Calif. Drain covers were mandated by a 2008 law intended to prevent accidents in which swimmers - usually children - can get trapped underwater by the suction of pool or spa drains. An investigation by the CPSC found that many of those drain covers were certified by labs that used faulty standards. The commission said not all pool drain covers will need to be replaced. The drain covers are being recalled because they have inaccurate flow ratings - but it's possible some drain covers are rated high enough for the pool they're installed in. Pools with multiple main drains or gravity drainage systems do not have to replace their covers. The recall is the result of months of investigation in which the CPSC subpoenaed 17,000 pages of documents from testing laboratories, which the agency says used bad standards in testing the drain covers. The manufacturers of the recalled drain covers are: A&A Manufacturing of Phoenix; AquaStar Pool Products of San Diego; Color Match Pool Fittings of Surprise, Ariz.; Custom Molded Products of Tyrone, Ga.; Hayward Pool Products of Elizabeth, N.J.; Pentair Water Pool and Spa of Sanford N.C.; Rising Dragon USA of Sweetwater, Tenn.; and Waterway Plastics of Oxnard, Calif. Pool owners with questions can contact the industry's drain cover recall hotline at (866) 478-3521 or go to www.apsp.org/draincoverrecall.

May 25th, 2011 - GRPA Senior Section Line Dance Competition

May 17th, 2011 - 2011 GRPA Tennis State Tournament Information

April 29th, 2011 - Class "A" Track Meet Information

Information has been released for the upcoming Class A track meet that will be held in Augusta on May 6th and 7th. Please see the two attachments.

April 20th, 2011 - Gwinnett County Parks to Hold Youth Sports Expo

Gwinnett County Parks & Recreation in partnership with NAYS (National Alliance of Youth Sports) would like to invite you to take part in our upcoming Youth Sports Expo on August 6, 2011. This will be the largest youth sports expo of its kind in the state and will be open to members of Youth Athletic Associations and youth sports service organizations from all over the state of Georgia. Join us on Saturday, August 6 at Rhodes Jordan Park, to gain valuable information for your Youth Sports programs, attend educational sessions on Youth Sports and Administration, Field Maintenance, Sports Safety, Marketing and Advertising, Legal and Finance and more. There will be an exhibit hall open from 11:00am-3:00pm with a great networking opportunity for your organization. There will also be a silent auction held throughout the day. We are taking applications for speakers and sponsors at this time. If you are interested in submitting speaking sessions, please e-mail Don Holley at don.holley@gwinnettcounty.com As an exhibitor or sponsor, you will gain access to key decision makers, be surrounded by buyers, reach a captive audience to demonstrate and showcase your products and services and establish new leads with industry leaders. Attendance at the Youth Sports Expo is guaranteed to connect you to the right people who desire your products and services. Take advantage of this exclusive exhibitor opportunity by calling 770.822.5454. There are many promotional opportunities available for your business or organization. Attendees can register online by visiting www.gwinnettparks.com price is $30/person Registration Code: EXPO20112

March 21st, 2011 - AFO (Aquatic Facility Operators Course) Has Been Cancelled

Due to lack of interest, the AFO (Aquatic Facility Operators Course) has been cancelled

February 28th, 2011 - Leadership I and George Harris Executive Management Institute

We are no longer taking applications for these program. The classes are now full.

February 25th, 2011 - GRPA State Gymnastics Meet

February 1st, 2011 - Mandatory Swim @ Track Meeting Schedule Announced

Mandatory Swimming and Track Meeting Dates and Locations WHO SHOULD ATTEND: Agencies planning on participating in GRPA Track and GRPA Swim Meets in 2011 should make plans to attend the meeting. Agencies must attend one of the state-wide meetings for swimming and track and field to cover the rules and regulations & entry submission process for the state meets. Agencies that do not attend and wish to either run track or swim must pay a $200 fine to the GRPA office before being allowed into the state meet. • February 23rd, 2011 Dublin (Swim @ 10:00 am and Track @ 1:00 pm) Theater Downtown Dublin, 100 South Church Street, Dublin, GA 31021, Contact Number: (478)277-5060 • March 31, 2011 Athletic Section Meeting Buford GA (Swim @ 10:30 am and Track @ 1:00 pm) Bogan Park operated by the Gwinnett County, 2723 North Bogan Road, Buford GA 30519, Contact Number: (770)614-2060 • April 13, 2011 Americus (Swim /Track) Approx 1:30pm following State Athletic Committee Meeting, Sumter County Recreation Department 408 Rucker Street, Americus, GA. 31719, Contact Number: (229) 924-4878. • May 11, 2011 Tifton (Swim) Tift County Recreation Department – 10:00 am 401 Victory Drive N., Tifton GA, Contact Number (229) 382-3262 • June 1, 2011 Oconee County (Swim) Approx 1:30pm following State Athletic Committee Meeting, Oconee County Parks & Recreation Department, Oconee Veterans Park, 3500A Hog Mountain Road, Watkinsville, GA 30677, Contact Number (706)769-3965 If you have any questions, please contact your GRPA District Athletic Representative and State Hosts for more information.

January 10th, 2011 - January State Athletic Committee Meeting Postponed

The January 12th meeting of the State Athletic Committee that was going to be held in Douglas has been postponed due to inclement weather. The meeting will now be held on Wednesday, January 19th at 10:00 in Douglas.

January 3rd, 2011 - 2011 Athletic Manual Changes Released

The 2011 GRPA Athletic Manual is currently at the printer and should be mailed out to all GRPA member agencies later this month. The manual is currently available on the GRPA website behind the member log-in. This attachment is a summary of the major changes made this year to the manual.