Rise Up for Parks and Recreation
July is Park and Recreation Month and a time to celebrate and support our parks and recreation spaces! There are so many reasons these places are important to us and to our communities…here are our Top Five Reasons We Rise Up for Parks and Recreation!
- Parks get people moving. We love movement and so do our bodies! Whether it’s a swinging adventure, a ride on a trail or climbing to the top of a tower or a tree, research shows that the more parks there are in a community, the more people exercise. Building new parks and playgrounds and updating existing ones is a great and proven way to get and keep people exercising.
- The ROI is strong! It’s true, parks and recreation spaces are great for communities, but do we know how great?! Research shows that spending $20 or more per resident on parks and recreation has incredible community benefits including lower obesity rates, better air quality, higher property values and decreased unemployment.
- Parks improve mental health. People living closer to parks and greenspaces report better mental health and have fewer cases of physician-diagnosed depression and anxiety. Study after study shows us how time in nature is associated with decreased health complaints, improved blood pressure and cholesterol levels, reduced stress, improved general health perceptions and a greater ability to face problems.
- Parks are for everyone. Properly designed parks, playgrounds and recreations spaces challenge, fulfill and promote development for people of all ages and abilities in the same space. This is instrumental in bringing people together and promoting pride and ownership of our communities. Which brings us to our fifth and final Top Five…
- Parks are critical infrastructure and provide residents with a way to participate in their communities. There are chance meetings with friends and neighbors, concerts, food truck events, playgrounds, fitness classes, pick-up games and art in the park events to name a few ways parks can bring people together outside.
This July we’re Rising Up for Parks and Recreation but really, we’re all rising up for our communities, our children and ourselves. Parks make the places we live and work happier, healthier and a lot more fun.