Park District reports results of survey

From press release

The Rockford Park District Board of Commissioners received an annual report of the overall goal that “Park space and recreation are essential to the quality of life in the Rockford Park District, resulting in a high return on investment of available resources.”

According to Executive Director Tim Dimke: “Essential to quality of life in the Rockford community are parks, open space, and recreational amenities that residents use, value and enjoy. We reported to the Board results from the citizen survey and registrations as quantitative evidence supporting that statement, and are pleased to share that the District experienced a 16 percent improvement in resident registered participation in park and recreation services.”

Highlights of the report include:

→ Resident participation is 77 percent, with 26,947 different individuals registered in District programs.

→ Youth participation, the Board’s highest priority for service, was 67 percent of all registrations, participating an average of 2.2 times.

→ Overall registrations improved by 18 percent, with 34,870 participants, an improvement of just more than 5,000 people, attributed mainly to major growth in hockey programs.

→ Adapted sports experienced the most successful year in the 21-year history of Therapeutic Recreation, increasing participation by 42 percent with a total of 138 athletes.

→ Membership at the two dog parks (Canine Corners) increased from 591 members in 2009 to 1,100 members, an 86 percent increase attributed to enhanced promotional efforts by the Friends of Canine Corners, who held a canine-friendly open house.

→ Forest City Queen ended the season with 5,103 riders compared to 3,950 in 2009, a 29 percent increase.

→ 2,944 volunteers donated 27,113 hours of service, resulting in a savings of $243,125.

→ The number of donors for the City of Gardens hanging basket program increased 21 percent over 2009.

There were some downward trends occurring in leagues, tournaments and higher-priced season passes for golf and Magic Waters, attributed to current economic conditions.

The entire 20-page report is available for viewing at the District’s website,

For more information, contact Tim Dimke, executive director, at (815) 987-8800 or

From the Nov. 3-9, 2010 issue

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