What is Parks and Recreation Management?

A person who enjoys outdoor spaces, helping people stay active and assisting people with recreational activities may wonder, what parks and recreation management is. Most recreation workers start as activity coordinators or facilities workers, then they work their way up into a management role. Understanding what parks and recreation management is could help a person plan their educational and career paths.

Managing Recreational Activities

Parks and recreation management involves the supervision of all recreational facilities that take place at a particular recreation center or park. In some communities, there may be one manager who oversees all of the events or activities at several parks or recreation centers. This person may be responsible for scheduling the use of sports fields, playgrounds and picnicking areas for special events. They may also be responsible for handling reservations of those facilities, such as for a birthday party or a baseball game for charity or a fundraiser.

What is Parks and Recreation Management

Overseeing Park and Recreation Center Use and Safety

The managers of parks and recreation centers also oversee the use of parks and recreation centers. For example, they might find staff or volunteers to teach classes for free or a small fee. They might offer classes such as ceramics, knitting or yoga at different times of the day so that members of the community can try something new, get active or meet others. They also manage the safety of parks and recreation centers. They may walk through the center, taking note of maintenance issues. They may identify equipment that needs repair or replacement. They may also teach others on the safe and proper use of equipment and facilities.

Supervising Facility Maintenance

The management of parks and recreation centers also includes ensuring that the facilities are properly maintained. This includes coordinating service and repair of heating, ventilation, air conditioning, plumbing and electrical systems. It also includes ensuring that driveways, parking lots and sidewalks or walking paths are safe and passable. The managers may coordinate lawn mowing, tree trimming and leaf or debris removal from parks. At recreation centers, they may identify which contractors are eligible for handling maintenance tasks such as painting, floor waxing or janitorial services.

Related Resource: 10 Best Online Master’s in Parks and Recreation Management

Coordinating Staff and Events

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the management of recreation centers and parks also involves recruiting, interviewing and hiring staff members. The manager also oversees the staff and assists with the coordination of the events. For example, the manager of a recreation center might help with the modification of an activity so that it is appropriate for seniors or toddlers. The managers keep track of all staff-related records, such as hours worked or disciplinary actions. Managers track the use of the equipment and facilities to determine which classes, events or equipment are the most popular.

People who oversee recreational centers and parks play a vital role in the cohesiveness of communities and the happiness of residents. The ability to go to a park or recreational center and play, join a sports team or use equipment or facilities at a low price benefits everyone who lives in the area. Knowing about what is parks and recreation management could help a person decide if this type of work or a management role would be well-suited to their skills, talents and personal preferences.