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Local Realtors Plant Pollinator Plants to Enhance Commissioners Park

Volunteer project part of a Placemaking Grant to support the playground renovation

A group of realtors from Century 21 Affiliated of Naperville gathered with a few friends from the service organization PEO (Philanthropic Education Association) to add pollinator-friendly plants to the landscape beds at the Commissioners Park playground on Tuesday, July 27. The volunteers planted purple coneflower, butterfly weed, penstemon and blazing star.

In 2019, Sarah Mara, a realtor affiliated with Century 21 of Naperville, contacted the Naperville Park District with the idea of applying for a Placemaking Grant to support a Park District project for the community. In 2020, Mara was successful in winning a grant of $15,293 for the benefit of the Park District from the Mainstreet Organization of REALTORS and the National Organization of REALTORS for the renovation of the Commissioners Park playground. The grant provided funding for 2 picnic tables, a game table, 7 park benches, a bike rack and a bee spring toy.

The playground renovation is planned to be complete by early September, depending on the arrival of the remaining equipment. Naperville Park District plans to host an opening celebration for the community at the Commissioners Park playground once the playground is finished.

Photo available here

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On Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011 Naperville Park District officials heard the good news for which they have been waiting for many months: the District has achieved national accreditation through the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA).

The decision was announced at the NRPA national conference in Atlanta following a formal hearing before the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA).

Naperville is only the second park district in Illinois to earn this distinction and the 104th nationally accredited agency in the nation; there are more than 10,000 recreation agencies in the United States. The Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies accredits a handful of park agencies each year that have completed a multi-step process involving a self-review by the agency, a site visit, and an evaluation and formal report by the Commission.

“We are extremely proud to bring this honor to Naperville,” said Park District Executive Director Ray McGury. “It’s an affirmation of our high standards and also an encouragement to continue bringing high quality recreation and parks experiences to our community.”

The Park District’s accreditation process began approximately one year ago and included an extensive self-evaluation by staff and a 5-day visit from CAPRA reviewers this past July. Maintaining the accreditation requires annual reports and 5- and 10-year reviews.

Park District staff members noted that the CAPRA process has helped them see the big picture, focus on long term goals and plans, review plans more regularly, organize documents so that they are accessible and useable, and collaborate more effectively with other departments and outside organizations.

Our Mission
We provide recreation and park experiences that promote healthy lives, healthy minds and a healthy community.
Our Vision
To be a national leader in parks and recreation providing and promoting high quality experiences and facilities at a great value to our community.
Core Values
Health and Wellness, Environmental Education, Stewardship and Sustainability, Community Enrichment, Public Safety, Accessibility, Personal Growth and Enrichment.
© 2021 Naperville Park District