Few things are as satisfying as seeing lush, full lawns in your parks or athletic fields. It takes a lot of work to get them there. And just as much work to maintain them throughout the season. Here is a brief primer on lawn care best practices to schedule for your assets.
Over 23 million households bought a pet during the pandemic. Many owners need a place to bring their dogs. That's why dog parks are one of the fastest-growing amenities park and recreation agencies can offer. Let’s look closer at dog parks, their benefits, and what to consider when adding one to your site.
When a park or facility has a maintenance issue, time matters. Minor issues often become big problems. An established work order system helps maintenance managers and their teams stay organized, prioritize appropriately, and help prevent disruptions in workflow or programming. Learn about work orders and how to make them more effective.
Signs convey an important message and impression to those who see them. Depending on the type of sign, they could be a sizable investment. Protecting that investment from the elements and vandalism ensures signs serve their purpose for as long as possible. Learn some best practices to help keep your signage looking great and strategies to minimize the effects of graffiti.
Signs serve a vital purpose in our parks and our facilities. Often, signs are the first thing that welcomes visitors and are present throughout the whole user experience. Carefully selecting the materials and design helps the signs display their messages better and longer. Here are some things to consider when adding signs to your parks and assets.
Networking at a conference is an excellent opportunity to connect with potential mentors, support systems, and future employers. For many, conversations initiated during the unstructured times are just as important as the educational sessions. Now that many conferences and trade shows are returning as in-person events, it’s a great time to brush up on the best practices to make the most of these networking opportunities.
If you’re looking to replace one of your older playgrounds or transform an outdoor space, here are some ideas to get the creative juices flowing. Playground technology has come a long way since most of us were kids. You won’t have a shortage of playground structures and features to consider. There are a few predominant, interconnected themes present in many modern parks. Here are the four most common.
Winter is tough on facility roofs, especially in the northern climates of the United States. The snow, wind, ice, and frigid temperatures can quickly turn a minor roofing issue into a big deal. Learn about common winter roofing problems various recreation facilities face and what to look out for before, during, and after a winter storm hits.
Some great leaders are born that way. But, in reality, most aren’t. In fact, it’s estimated only 10 percent of people are natural-born leaders. What do the others do? They learn how to lead and develop a leadership mindset. Let’s take a closer look at what a leadership mindset is, why it’s important, and how to start developing it. 
January is the month many people try to create (and stick to) healthier routines. According to IHRSA, gym membership usually spikes 4 percent points in January, accounting for 12% of all new annual memberships. A well-maintained gym or recreation center will keep members returning (and renewing their memberships). But it’s more than just getting people in the door.
If you live in certain areas of the country, there will likely come a time when you'll need to clear snow from the roads, parking lots, and walkways of your assets. Ensuring the truck is appropriately stocked with winter safety gear and emergency replacement parts prepare your drivers for whatever issues arise. Here are some things to include...
Prescribed burns are one of the most effective ways to manage multiple land issues. It requires careful planning, trained technicians, and the right conditions to control the fire. The planning and hard work of controlled burns pay off. Areas with routine prescribed burns are healthier, safer, and more diverse than unmanaged lands.
Seasonal and lower-wage positions are common for many maintenance teams. Parks maintenance managers often struggle to keep these employees motivated. Effective leaders approach these employees with engaging ways to stay motivated, invested, and positive. And the good news...these are relatively simple strategies that are free to implement.
To those that don't know, invasive plant species can be attractive, fragrant, and even welcomed additions to gardens and landscaping.  Since they lack natural predators, they can take over large areas and destroy the native habitat. Learn more about invasive plant species, why they are so dangerous, and how we can help manage them in our parks and green spaces.
Almost every job has some level of stress. Work-related stress may take its toll on your team and lead to burnout. By recognizing burnout, creating a supportive, communicative work environment, and allowing the team to find more balance in life, you set the stage for a more productive, resilient team.
Climate change and the resulting severe weather have challenged us to address heat waves, wildfires, flooding, and more frequent and intense storms. One way to help reduce the impacts of these hazards is through nature-based solutions. Here is a quick primer on nature-based solutions, how they help, and some examples of common solutions communities use. 
It’s easy to take for granted the critical role vehicles play in the maintenance department’s workflow. Every workday morning starts with dispatching safe, reliable vehicles so the maintenance team can complete their daily tasks. That is until one of the vehicles breaks down, and everyone’s schedule gets thrown off. Vehicle inspections help prevent that from happening.
You don’t often hear “recreation” and “emergency management” used in the same sentence. It may seem hard to discover a connection between the two things. But when you take a closer look, Parks & Recreation departments can be invaluable resources for the community in the case of a disaster or emergency. A parks department's resources--human and property--can help with emergency management before, during, and after a crisis.
After spending the time and money installing a pickleball court, you will want to protect that investment. Pickleball court maintenance helps to increase the playing area’s lifespan and keep it looking good. Here’s how to maintain a pickleball court.
Pickleball courts are in high demand. After all, pickleball is the fastest-growing sport in many areas throughout the country. Let’s explore the most common pickleball installation options and some pros/cons for each.
Pickleball is America’s fasting growing sport. More and more parks and recreation departments are installing pickleball courts--or getting requests from their community to add some. Wondering where to start? Here is a brief primer on pickleball and pickleball courts.
Over the years, we have heard our fair share of misconceptions and resistance as we helped managers set up their customized CMMS platforms and trained their teams.  After all, starting something new isn't always easy. Here are some common misconceptions about implementing a CMMS that we love helping people understand better.
Does your employee evaluation process feel more like a formality than a valuable use of your time? What if evaluating employee performance was something that could benefit you, your team, and your agency? It's certainly possible...Here's what you need to know about it.
Your team has been doing things one way for as long as anyone can remember. Now the decision to shake things up is met with plenty of mumbled (or not so mumbled) complaints and resistance. Start setting the resisting team members’ minds at ease by addressing resistance in a calm, factual manner. Here is some common resistance associated with implementing a new CMMS.
When chainsaws are maintained and used correctly, they are powerful, useful tools helping with tree care and removal, clearing thick brush, and cutting fallen branches into movable pieces. Conversely, chainsaws could be one of the most dangerous pieces of small equipment your team uses when handled and maintained incorrectly. Here are some things to keep in mind before, during, and after using a chainsaw.
Maintenance managers must possess a particular skill set to ensure their crew gets on the same page and executes the tasks that need completion. What qualities do they possess that help them hire the right candidates, keep a team motivated, and stay on top of the ever-changing needs of a park and recreation department? Here are 4 important leadership skills we’ve noticed in maintenance managers.
After the last mowing, don’t just roll the mowers to the back of the garage and forget about them until spring. The end of the mowing season is a perfect time for inspecting and winterizing commercial lawn mowers. Here are some things to do before the mowers make it into storage for a well-deserved break.
How can your team be more consistent? One way is by creating standard operating procedures.  A standard operating procedure (SOP) is a document that clearly states the steps to do a task. Learn more about these important documents and how to make effective SOPs.
Many park districts, parks & recreation departments, and community organizations streamline their operations, registration, marketing, and maintenance tasks with the help of software. The days of spreadsheets, word processing, and an email account getting the job done have long passed. And for a good reason! Software gets designed to make our lives easier. Let's look at some types of parks and recreation software to improve the efficiency of teams and operations.
Your crew is the heart and muscle of the maintenance department. Your vehicles and heavy equipment are the backbones your crew relies on to get work completed. Having an established system of maintaining and monitoring your fleet requires many moving parts. Here are some steps to help ensure your vehicles are safe, dependable, and ready to respond when needed.



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