Provo Parks and Recreation named best in the nation | News, sports, jobs

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Caysen Nichols, 10, of Provo, uses his foot to press the final buzzer after completing a NinjaCross water course at the Provo Recreation Center on Tuesday, September 22, 2020. (Isaac Hale, Daily Herald file photo)

Isaac Hale Daily Herald

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Orem’s Carley Morgan will complete one replay on Thursday June 4, 2020 while training at the Provo Recreation Center. (Isaac Hale, Daily Herald file photo)

Isaac Hale Daily Herald

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Children play and have fun in the city-built recreational wading pool at Pioneer Park in Provo on Thursday, July 14, 2016. (Dominic Valente, Daily Herald file photo)

Dominic Valente, Daily Herald

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Children play in the city-built recreational pool at Pioneer Park in Provo on July 14, 2016. (Dominic Valente, Daily Herald file photo)

Dominic Valente, Daily Herald file photo

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Skating students warm up during a college skating class at Peaks Ice Arena on Tuesday, March 13, 2017, in Provo. Both BYU and UVU have skating courses in their courses. (Evan Cobb, Daily Herald file photo)

Evan Cobb, Daily Herald

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Provo City Human Resources Director Daniel Softley, left, punches David Torgersen, Provo City Chief Resource Engineer, for a goal during a game between the Mighty Gooses and Team Shinners of the adult hockey league at the Peaks Ice Arena in Provo. to celebrate on Thursday September 17, 2020. (Isaac Hale, Daily Herald file photo)

Isaac Hale Daily Herald

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The Covey Center for the Arts in Provo, shown in 2009. (Mario Ruiz, Daily Herald file photo)

MARIO RUIZ / Daily Herald

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The Utah Metropolitan Ballet presented “Nutcracker” in 2014 at the Covey Center for the Arts. (Courtesy Jedediah Photography)

Provided by Jedediah Photography

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Scott Henderson was promoted to Provo City Council and is now the director of parks and recreation for the city. (Courtesy Provo City)

Christopher Knoles, Provo City

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Caysen Nichols, 10, of Provo, uses his foot to press the final buzzer after completing a NinjaCross water course at the Provo Recreation Center on Tuesday, September 22, 2020. (Isaac Hale, Daily Herald file photo)

Orem’s Carley Morgan will complete one replay on Thursday June 4, 2020 while training at the Provo Recreation Center. (Isaac Hale, Daily Herald file photo)

Children play and have fun in the city-built recreational wading pool at Pioneer Park in Provo on Thursday, July 14, 2016. (Dominic Valente, Daily Herald file photo)


Children play in the city-built recreational pool at Pioneer Park in Provo on July 14, 2016. (Dominic Valente, Daily Herald file photo)

Skating students warm up during a college skating class at Peaks Ice Arena on Tuesday, March 13, 2017, in Provo. Both BYU and UVU have skating courses in their courses. (Evan Cobb, Daily Herald file photo)

Provo City Human Resources Director Daniel Softley, left, punches David Torgersen, Provo City Chief Resource Engineer, for a goal during a game between the Mighty Gooses and Team Shinners of the adult hockey league at the Peaks Ice Arena in Provo. to celebrate on Thursday September 17, 2020. (Isaac Hale, Daily Herald file photo)


The Covey Center for the Arts in Provo, shown in 2009. (Mario Ruiz, Daily Herald file photo)

The Utah Metropolitan Ballet presented Nutcracker in 2014 at the Covey Center for the Arts. (Courtesy Jedediah Photography)

Scott Henderson was promoted to Provo City Council and is now the director of parks and recreation for the city. (Courtesy Provo City)

Thousands of men, women, and children – not all of Provo – have made use of the city’s parks, trails, and high-tech leisure center. Now the Provo nation is returning a gold medal.

Provo City Parks and Recreation was recently named best in the country and awarded the prestigious Grand Plaque of the National Gold Medal Awards for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management from the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration (AAPRA) in association with. awarded the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA).

“Provo City Parks and Recreation has received the highest accolades our industry has to offer, with national accreditation and receipt of the National Gold Medal Award,” said Dirk Richwine, Chairman of the Gold Medal Committee.

“The Gold Medal has always been recognized by Parks and Recreation as a top achievement in our industry,” said Scott Henderson, Provo City Parks and Recreation Director. “Recognizing our strong, active, and healthy community as the industry standard is a true honor that we share with the leadership of Provo City and our citizens.”

It’s the residents who make the Parks and Recreation Department look good as they develop new and better programs and places. To share the praise, Provo invites residents to celebrate.

All Provo citizens are invited to “Share the Gold” with a community celebration this Wednesday at 10am at the Provo Strong sign at the Provo Recreation Center, 320 West 500 North. The first 100 children present will receive their own gold medal.

Founded in 1965, the Gold Medal Awards program honors local park and recreation agencies, military recreation programs, and state park systems in the United States who demonstrate excellence in parks and recreation through long-term planning, resource management, volunteering, environmental stewardship, and program development, professional development and recognition from agencies.

Applications are divided into six classes, with five classes based on population, one class for armed forces and another for state park systems.

In order to receive the Grand Plaque, the agency first had to be determined as a finalist in its class. There are four finalists in each class. Provo City Parks and Recreation received the Grand Plaque in Category III for cities with a population between 75,001 and 150,000.

“The judges were impressed with our balanced and diverse physical resources, including a recreation center, performing arts facilities, parks, golf course, ice rink and programs,” said Provo Mayor Michelle Kaufusi. “Not surprisingly, Provo’s community engagement and support has been and always will be a key factor in our success.”

Jurors are selected based on their considerable experience and knowledge in parks and recreational activities at the local and national levels.

This year’s Grand Plaque recipients were announced at the National Recreation and Park Association’s 2021 conference, held in person and virtual in Nashville, Tennessee, on September 21.

For more information on the Gold Medal Awards, please visit http://nrpa.org/goldmedal.

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