VRPS E-Update: Vol 17 No 35 August 26, 2020

Your VRPS Membership affords you this member-only publication.  Thanks for your support!

VRPS E-Update:  Vol 17 No 35
August 26, 2020
Like us on Facebook
Visit our blog

A Message from the President

Since announcing Jim’s departure, there have been two questions that have been asked most commonly:  what are we doing with the VRPS offices now that staff has been cut; and what is the role of the Foundation as it relates to VRPS? I’ll start with the easy question concerning the offices: at this point with one position eliminated and Jim’s position laid off in January, we will only have one staff person using the office at that time.  However, the office (which VRPS owns) is still used by volunteers from VRPS membership and the VRPS Board and Foundation to conduct the business of the society.  Depending on what the Transition Committee and Board recommend, that will determine how the office will be used for the future.  Answering the question of what is the role of the VRPS Foundation requires a much more detailed answer. I have spoken to both Jim and Ned Cheely, President of the Foundation, and developed a few points as it relates to the Foundation’s mission:
  •          The Foundation of the Virginia Recreation and Park Society is a 501 (c) 3 organization formed in 1983 for the purpose of supporting the parks and recreation profession.
  •          Since 1983, the Foundation has awarded over $250,000 in scholarships to individuals working in or studying parks and recreation. In addition, the Foundation raised over $200,000 for the capital fund to help pay for the VRPS headquarters office in Mechanicsville.
  •          Each year, VRPS members dedicate funds from Service Areas and Resource Groups to fund scholarships to support continuing education. Foundation dues help support VPRS activities, including the Annual Conference,  LTI, Management Conference, and pay a management fee to VRPS to cover administrative functions, exceeding $10,000 annually.
  •          The assets of the Foundation are restricted by the rules of the IRS – money specifically identified for a certain purpose needs to be used for that purpose.
  •          The existing funds include:
  1.             Cole Fund : James K Cole was a recreation professional from VA Beach who dedicated his life to parks and recreation and died in a tragic accident. The fund was established by dedicated coworkers to honor his work. The Foundation accepted the fund with the understanding that proceeds from earned interest would fund scholarships for higher education.
  2.             Reynolds Fund:  Jesse Reynolds, former Director of Richmond Recreation and Parks, was instrumental in forming Virginia’s first registration program to measure accepted skills in parks and recreation. This was the forerunner of our current national Certification Program, administered by NRPA. The Reynolds family raised funds and asked the Foundation to administer scholarships for higher education in parks and recreation.
  3.             The Education Endowment Fund: This is a fund intended to provide funding for any parks and recreation professional seeking continuing education with VRPS conferences and workshops. The fund’s goal is $1,000,000.
We have received many offers from members to help during these tough times and we have fortunately been able to use their considerable skills.  If you are a member and you want help, there are a number of ways. Contact myself or email vrps@vrps.com if you can volunteer to help.  Join the Foundation or contribute to the Foundation’s Covid Relief Fund. Organize a fund raiser from your Resource Group or Service Area by contacting your Board Liaison.  If you have any questions or wish to help please email me at dcsmith@hanovercounty.gov.
Dan Smith, CPRP
2020 President
Virginia Parks and Recreation Society


Join fellow Parks & Recreation professionals for the Virtual 2020 Annual Conference!

The registration fee will get each attendee access to every session including CEUs, keynote address and awards presentation.
VRPS Members – $99
Non-Members – $149
Students – $25
Katey Legg, CPRP
Director, Gloucester Parks, Recreation & Tourism
Chair, 2020 Virtual Annual Conference
August VRPS President’s Newsletter Now Online 

To view it and more VRPS publications, follow the links below  – you must login to the website and be recognized as a VRPS member to see the archives:
2021 VRPS Management Conference
SPEAKERS: The Virginia Recreation and Park Society is seeking session proposals for the 2021 Management Conference, scheduled to take place in Suffolk, Virginia, February 21-23, 2021. 
The Management Conference is geared towards mid to upper-level managers in the Parks and Recreation field. Desired topics include but are not limited to: administration, customer service, human resources, leadership, marketing, partnerships, advocacy, and professional development.
Speakers under agency travel restrictions or with underlying health conditions that put them in a high risk category for COVID-19 may be permitted to present virtually. Session proposals may be submitted online at https://www.vrps.com/events/management-conference/
Please indicate if you would like to be considered for a virtual presentation.
REGISTRATION is open for 2021 Management Conference.
Athletic Fields Workshop – Re-Scheduled for November 6, 2020


The Athletic Fields course has been re-scheduled and will be presented VIRTUALLY on Friday, November 6th, from 8 am – 12 pm. This LIVE presentation will be brought to you by:
Dr. Mike Goatley, Jr. is Professor and Extension Turfgrass Specialist in the Department of Crop and Soil Environmental Sciences of Virginia Tech.
Mike will provide the basics of turf management, including detailing the strengths and weaknesses of grassing options in Virginia, how to conduct and interpret soil tests, and how to use those soil test reports in developing a fertility program for your situation.
Matt Anderson, CSFM, CSE, is currently a District Sales Manager for the Toro Company, focusing on Sports Fields and Grounds business for the western US.
Matt will discuss how mowing and cultivation inputs change as turf use and demands increase. He will touch on best mowing practices and various equipment options for mowing based on your organizations budget. Aeration will also be discussed regarding compaction relief and best aeration strategy to utilize based on your budget.
Our corporate partners, STI and TESCO, will then present an interactive presentation.
All registrants will receive a reminder email 30 days prior to the class, with the link to log into the virtual Athletic Fields presentation. A recording of this course will be sent to registered students who cannot attend on this day.

If you are not currently registered for the Athletic Fields course and would like to participate, contact www.vrps@vrps.com



COVID-19 Parks and Recreation Services Tracker
As parks and recreation professionals, many of us are making the difficult staffing impacts and decisions of what services and amenitites we can continue to provide to the public.  The Park Operations Resource Group has created a central spreadsheet to track the service impacts to various communities.  A link to the spreadsheet can be found on the Park Operations Resource Group webpage.  The spreadsheet relies on input provided by everyone, so if you use it for information, please add yours for others to use.
For questions or technical issues, please contact Alister Perkinson at 757-207-0002.
Special Events & Marketing Resource Group (SEMRG)
Stay connected with us!
To make sure you don’t miss out on important updates for quarterly meetings, socials and more – join our group SEMRG VRPS <https://www.facebook.com/groups/SEMRGVRPS/> on Facebook. For instructions on how to update your VRPS profile and join our e-Blast list, click here: <https://www.vrps.com/specialty-resource-groups/special-events-and-marketing/>. If you have any questions or suggestions for SEMRG, contact Joy Johnson at joy.johnson@jamescitycountyva.gov
Health and Wellness Interest Group

Are you interested in joining a Health & Wellness interest group?  This group would look to provide educational and networking opportunities for Parks and Recreation professionals who are responsible for health and wellness classes and services, as well as those who desire to improve the health and wellness of their community members through the addition of new programs.   This group would be great for facility managers, programmers, fitness directors, and other parks and recreation professionals who are seeking leadership positions and would like to broaden their knowledge through cross-training.  If this interests you, please email Julie Frederickson at Julie.frederickson@fairfaxcounty.gov.

Young Professionals Community
Network Focus: The Young Professional Community (YPC) is designed to inspire and engage members of the recreation profession under the age of 35 (of course all ages are welcome to be involved) to become active members of Virginia Recreation and Parks Society, grow and maintain their professional network, share ideas along with asking questions to the group, and discover the benefits of professional development.
For more information about the YPC, please join the group on Facebook at VRPS Young Professional Community group. If you have any questions or have additional information to share, contact Roberto Ramos at rramos@vbgov.com.
Job Opportunities
  • Organizations:  post a job – $50 fee (free to VRPS organization members)
  • Individuals:  search for openings
Virginia Recreation and Park Society, 6372 Mechanicsville Turnpike, Suite 109, Mechanicsville, VA 23111