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An agency of the Centre Region Council of Governments, State College, PA 16801
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2006 HIGHLIGHTS: Centre Region Parks & Recreation

12 Jan 07

Primary Highlights of 2006:

•          Centre Region Parks & Recreation agency offered 769 public recreation programs and special events which involved 109,706 participants. The agency processed 29,655 customer financial transactions, which included 892 group reservations for pavilions. Of course most park visits involve no fees or reservations and are not reflected in these figures.

•          The agency operated 48 park sites totaling 670 acres during 2006, including 44 municipal parks, two outdoor swimming pools, the Centre Region Senior Center and Millbrook Marsh Nature Center.

•          Community interest in the agency remains very high. For example, the agency website hosted a total of 1.57 million hits during 2006 from 168,192 visitors; an average of 460 visitors per day.

•          Cooperative Advancements for Capital Projects:

The five participating municipalities approved the Articles of Agreement for “Regional Park Operations, Planning & Development” and for the “Ownership of the Whitehall Road Parklands.”

The five participating municipalities approved the Park Forest Pool Master Site Plan and submitted a grant application for construction assistance.

            A state grant was awarded to develop a Master Site Plan for the renewal of Welch Pool. That process is now underway.

A state grant was awarded to develop a Master Site Plan for the COG parklands at Oak Hall, and the COG approved a Development Lease to authorize that park planning and construction.

           A state grant was awarded for the COG to acquire 75 acres of parkland off Whitehall Road.

The Millbrook Marsh Nature Center Capital Campaign secured $685,850 in pledges as part of the Quiet Phase of the Building Fund Campaign - representing 59% of the local goal of $1.25 million.

Program & League Highlights

1.      The implementation of the Youth Sports Renewal Plan concluded in 2006 with solid success on the new “Start Smart” programs as well as other nontraditional sports such as wrestling, judo, field hockey and lacrosse. The “Start Smart” Soccer, Football and Golf programs involved 144 youngsters in 2006 and will be continued for 2007.

2.      The adult sport leagues continue to grow at a time when access to indoor facilities is becoming more limitedr. There were 78 teams in 4 different sports in 2006, compared to 74 teams in 2005. The addition of the 104 participants in the Adult Indoor Soccer program indicates healthy interest in adult sports.

3.        CRPR offered (during 2006) and researched (for 2007) a variety of new programs: Parent's Night Off, Wild Wednesday Get-a-Ways; Car Care for Women; Youth Bowling Program, Hip Hop Dance Program and Flashlight Easter Egg Hunt. The increase in participants (to 300+ ) and in program sponsors for the CRPR Touch-A-Truck event.

4.        The Leisure Guides were improved through the use of higher quality paper and local photos. This helped to increase visual appeal while promoting quality programs. In addition, we continued to explore new and inventive types of marketing & publicity outlets to improve top-of-mind awareness of CRPR in a highly competitive market.

Nature Center Highlights:

1.         The nature center hosted 6,964 program visits in 2006, a 2% increase from 2005 - which demonstrates both the continued popularity and the capacity ceiling of the seasonal facilities available. This count includes the 2,955 school children visiting from scout groups, charter schools and 6 different school districts. The center hosted a successful Historic Harvest Festival in November, with a record number of 305 attendees.

2.         $685,850 in pledges were secured as part of the Quiet Phase of the Building Fund Campaign - representing 59% of the local goal of $1.25 million.

Senior Center Highlights

1.         The center hosted 30,098 program visits in 2006, a 3.6% increase over 2005 and served 4,070 noon-time meals in 2006, a 12.4% increase over 2005.

2.         Senior Center participants logged in 8,200 miles in two new walking programs for 2006: "Walk Across PA" and "The Silver Striders." Walk Across PA is a county-wide program that allowed seniors to convert varied exercise activities into steps and mileage. The Silver Striders is an indoor walking program held at the center.

3.         Agency coordination of the 18th Annual Centre County Senior Games in 2006 provided 225 participants with nine different sporting events. During 2006 a modified indoor walking event was added that made the event more accessible to people with physical / health issues.

4.         The Senior Center provided 228 flu shots (free) to adults 60+ in cooperation with Prime Time Health, Mount Nittany Medical Center and Nittany Snow Shoe Home Health Service. Also, staff coordinated four sessions of lifelong learning courses with CALL for a 2006 yearly of 198 courses.

Aquatic Highlights

1.         During 2006 the two pools opened on schedule and hosted 50,696 visits, compared to 49,874 in 2005. The pool budgets recovered from the unplanned operating deficits of 2004 and 2005, and the special events at the pools proved to be increasingly popular. Safety remained a top priority by staff.

2.         The Park Forest Pool Master Site Plan was developed and approved by the Authority and the participating municipalities. The COG Finance Committee has been asked by the COG General Forum to prepare a funding strategy for the renewal of both pools.

3.         With municipal and state grant support, the development of the Welch Pool Master Site Plan got underway with a land survey and the development of a proposed land lease from SCASD.

Park Operations Highlights

Staff continued worked to improve the effectiveness of park maintenance services:

•          Contracted repair costs were reduced by 15% by doing more repairs / maintenance in-house.

•          Staff increased the safety and appearance of our athletic fields with an aggressive turf management program.

•          All work on renovating the 5 leased ballfields from SCASD was completed.

•          The agency integrated Marjorie Mae Park and the Tudek Dog Park into the regional system.   

The CRPR Authority is a publicly-funded, municipal agency serving 5 municipalities since 1966. The Authority also maintains 501c3 status.
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The Centre Region Parks & Recreation Authority
2643 Gateway Drive #1, State College, PA. USA 16801   (814)231-3071   Fax 814.235.7832