Wow, Louisville. You like us, you really, really like us.
Over 1.1 million visits, nearly 10,000 students in education programs (hitting our FIVE year goal in just 18 months), over 5,000 paddle sports rentals, 42 weddings hosted, performances by three Grammy award winning musicians, more than 8,000 volunteer hours, and over 2,000 Parklands Members.
Those are just some of the numbers behind The Parklands in 2014.
We at 21st Century Parks again have the amazing opportunity to thank Louisville for another tremendous year of getting more active in the nation’s largest, and fastest growing non-profit public park system. When planning for this community-shaping conservation project began less than a decade ago, its creators, planners, and donors hoped that Louisville would adopt the new park system with the use and depth of care shown the city’s existing public spaces. The city amazes us through its immediate and passionate adoption, use, and support of The Parklands as an integral part of our community’s fabric. We are blown away by the rate of use and the feedback we’ve received!!
Looking forward, 2015 will be a year of two types of very interesting activities in The Parklands. First, we will continue to work on perfecting and improving the park experience in our two northern, open parks (Beckley Creek and Pope Lick Parks). We’re learning which programs work, and which may not, and tweaking all of our programming for improvement.
Your Parklands team is committing to learning and improving and this is one of our top internal leadership values. We’re also making a strong effort to implement a zone gardener approach that will improve the look and feel of our manicured areas. In the natural areas realm, we’re entering years three and four of many of the plantings and this will produce a richer wildlife experience for park visitors. Look for trees and shrubs to put on significant growth and begin shaping a canopy experience.
Second, work will continue at a feverish pitch in the 2,500 acres comprising Turkey Run and Broad Run Parks. Roads, trails, gardens, rental facilities, playgrounds, and spraygrounds are all under development as we speak. As serial conservation/park entrepreneurs, these new amenities allow our planning team to deploy lessons learned in activities such as plant establishment and selection, signage installation, visitor services, and maintenance – all aimed at making the southern parks a great experience for you, our park visitor.
And this year will find us reaching out to you, the park visitor and Member, to improve your experiences. We want to provide even greater reasons for you to join with us in maintaining this park through volunteerism, membership, participation, and philanthropic activities. Parks aren’t “done” when the construction activities complete. Successful parks continue to evolve, change, and improve to meet the changing demands and needs of their park visitors – be it the two-legged variety of the hundreds of species of wildlife that also call us home.
The Parklands is the largest non-profit park project in the nation. No one is doing what we’re doing here, quite like we’re doing it – and it’s all possible because of partnerships that you have brought to the table. We are so grateful for the support, visitation, care, and passion that park visitors and users share with the park. You are what makes this park so special.
Please consider dropping us a line to let us know how we’re doing. We really do read comment cards! And we believe the best pledge of support comes in the form of Membership, so if you haven’t signed-up yet, please consider doing so. Not only will you get behind-the-scenes looks at what’s to come in 2015 and beyond, but you’ll be giving us the best feedback possible!
Thank you, Louisville, for visiting, valuing, learning, volunteering, and contributing to The Parklands of Floyds Fork. We look forward to an incredible 2015!