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2021 State of the Naperville Park District Address Now Available on ParkTalk Podcast

Continuing a recent tradition, Naperville Park District just released its fourth annual “State of the Naperville Park District Address” on its ParkTalk podcast, now available at and on most podcast apps.

The 2021 State of the Naperville Park District includes five episodes featuring interviews with District staff, Executive Director Ray McGury and Park Board President Mike Reilly.  The 2021 theme, “Rising to the Challenge,” focuses on the District’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, reflecting on 2020 and looking forward to 2021.

“The podcast format allows residents to listen on demand, when it’s convenient for them,” explained Sameera Luthman, director of marketing and communications and host for the State of the Park District podcast series. “We hope that community members will use this as an opportunity to learn more about their Park District.”

The episodes are as follows:

Episode 01: Introduction to the 2021 State of the Naperville Park District Address

Guests: Mike Reilly, Park Board President and Ray McGury, Executive Director

This episode kicks off the podcast’s theme of “Rising to the Challenge,” with highlights from 2020, what we learned, and a look ahead to 2021.


Episode 02: 2021 Districtwide Goals and Capital Projects

Guests: Brad Wilson, Director of Recreation and Facilities and Eric Shutes, Director of Planning

Learn about key capital projects, such as Wolf’s Crossing Community Park, the District’s process of renewing its national accreditation, and plans for moving forward from the effects of the pandemic.


Episode 03: The Rec “Boom” of Outdoor Sports

Guests: Kevin Carlson, Director of Golf; Tim Quigley, Director of Parks and Jackie Gonzalez, Aquatic Manager

Hear stories of how amenities like Springbrook and Naperbrook Golf Courses, the Paddleboat Quarry, the new 95th Street Community Plaza and the Midday Spray at Rotary Hill met the recreation needs of residents during the pandemic.


Episode 04: District Finances in a Pandemic

Guests: Ray McGury, Executive Director; Sue Stanish, Director of Finance


Staff explains some of the financial challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic and the proactive ways the District has managed the situation.


Episode 05: Creative Shifts in Recreation Due to the Pandemic

Guests: Brad Wilson, Director of Recreation and Facilities and Andrea Coates, Superintendent of Recreation


Gain insights into the District’s challenges managing COVID-19 issues and successes achieved new programs and opportunities, such as the E-Learning Experience, virtual group exercise classes, Halloween Nights Lights and Santa’s Naperville Workshop.


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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.
© 2021 Naperville Park District