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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates and Participation Guidelines. More information regarding the District’s response can be found here

Park District Introduces Santa’s Naperville Workshop for 2020 Holiday Season

The Naperville Park District is preparing to introduce a brand-new Santa event for 2020 in light of COVID-19 restrictions. Santa’s Naperville Workshop will occupy the Riverwalk Café located on the Riverwalk near Rotary Hill and the Paddleboat Quarry, which will be transformed into a wonderful, magical holiday destination that visitors of all ages will enjoy.

Santa’s Workshop is an outdoor event where visiting families will remain outdoors and peer through the windows of Santa’s workshop. Each family will enjoy a short, live conversation with Santa using special North Pole technology. Families are encouraged to be prepared to take their own photos and video of their experience as an event photographer will not be onsite.

“We’re very pleased to introduce a new event and fun way for families to enjoy the annual tradition of a visit with Santa, given the constraints presented by the pandemic,” explained Andrea Coates, superintendent of recreation. “We hope that Santa’s Naperville Workshop will brighten holiday spirits as we look forward to a different kind of seasonal celebration this year.”

The multi-day event will run from Wed., December 2 through Wed., December 23 from 4:30-8:30 pm. Advance registration is required and onsite registration or walkups are not available.

Residents can register online beginning Mon., Nov. 23 at noon; nonresident registration begins Tues., Nov. 24 at noon. Event link and registration information is available at The cost to attend is $10/residents and $15/nonresidents. Spots are limited, so be sure to register early.

Per annual tradition, the Park District also will host two Special Needs Nights on Wed., December 2 and Thurs., December 3 for families with children who have special needs, hosted by Western DuPage Special Recreation Association; additionally, Military and First Responders Night will be held Wed., December 9. Registration for these special nights also will be available on the Santa’s Naperville Workshop webpage.

Santa’s Naperville Workshop is made possible by several community partners including presenting sponsor Woody Buick GMC.

The Park District reminds anyone attending a Park District event or visiting a facility to be familiar with and follow the District’s COVID-19 participation guidelines for programs and facilities. This information can be found at 


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Funds raised through the Naperville Parks Foundation support the Naperville Park District’s Fee Assistance Program. The Naperville Parks Foundation supports the recreation needs and desires of the residents of Naperville – encouraging health and wellness, fitness, family time, and fun. The Foundation supports the mission of making recreation of all kinds accessible to everyone across the community, regardless of socioeconomic circumstances.

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.
© 2020 Naperville Park District