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Earth Day 2016: 7 Ways We're Greener This Year

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1. Knoch Knolls Nature Center is open 7 days a week with educational exhibits inside and lots to do outside. The Center welcomed more than 24,000 visitors in 2015, its first full year of operation.  


Admission is free for all ages.  Live animals, including a snake, toad and turtle, are now on display in the exhibit area, along with native river fish in the aquarium.  Kids can play with the hands-on educational materials at the science table and cart, and the nature playground is a popular outdoor destination.

2. Sportsman’s Park is open to the public 5 full days each week, with 7 additional acres of restored natural areas and new trails to enjoy. After an extensive remediation process to remove any remaining contamination from past shooting practices at the trapshooting range, the park site has received a clean bill of health from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency. 



Trapshooting takes place on Thursday evenings and on Sunday afternoons, with only steel shot permitted.  On other days, everyone is welcome to explore and enjoy the natural areas of the park, which is located on West Street, just north of the Ron Ory Community Garden Plots.

3. The Naperville Park District fleet now includes 6 trucks that run on propane fuel, and 59% of its fleet uses some form of alternative fuel, including 100% electric, hybrid, and bio-diesel.  Alternative fuels save money, are sourced domestically, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.



      

                                                                                                

  4. Several Park District facilities are producing clean, renewable energy for Naperville.  Solar panels have been installed at Knoch Park, Nike Sports Complex, Knoch Knolls Nature Center, and most recently, on the roof of the Fort Hill Activity Center, currently under construction.  The Nike array sends some energy back into the Naperville grid and the Knoch Knolls Nature Center panels supply approximately 15% of the building’s energy on average, with a higher percentage realized in the summer months.

5. New, energy-efficient lighting is leading to big dollar savings and environmental benefits.  Sports lighting can be turned off by push buttons and by remote control, which saved the District $22,059 and reduced carbon emissions by 181 metric tons in 2015. LED lights have been installed in several sports complexes and facilities, which will save tens of thousands of dollars within a few years.

6. Rainwater is being collected by cisterns in two locations. The 1,400-gallon cistern featured in the Knoch Knolls Nature Center exhibit area captures rainwater from the roof for flushing the toilets. In 2015 the cistern provided 90% of the water used by the Center.  The District’s second cistern is located underground at Knoch Park, and supplied more than 60% of the water used for irrigation in the south section of the park.


 

Visitors can see the cistern in the exhibit area at Knoch Knolls Nature Center.


The 10,000-gallon cistern at Knoch Park is buried underground, storing water for irrigation.

7. Recycling is an area in which we continue to learn, experiment, and partner with others. For example, in 2015 park maintenance staff began spreading composted leaves and mulch in a thin layer on turf fields, reducing the need for chemical fertilizers.  Centennial Beach staff found a vendor that can recycle its used cooking oil from Centennial Grill. The information technology department received a rebate of more than $2,500 for recycling mobile devices.  Knoch Knolls Nature Center hosted its first recycled art exhibit in August 2015, involving participants in creating a sculpture from recycled plastic bottles.

 

Interested in more detail? Read about the Park District’s Sustainable Parks Initiative

What you can do.  You can join the Park District in becoming greener in 2016. Click here to read about 7 easy ways to contribute toward a healthier environment.


Connect your business’s brand with a well-known and respected one like the Naperville Park District’s and reach a large, active and diverse audience.

To learn more about our sponsorship opportunities contact
Stacey Fontechia Sales and Sponsorship Manager at 630-848-3575 or at sfontechia@napervilleparks.org.

Looking for an opportunity to have a positive impact on people’s lives while building a fun and dynamic career? Consider the Naperville Park District! It takes all kinds of skills, knowledge and talent to serve the recreation needs of the Naperville community. If you’re passionate about the outdoors, staying active, having fun and encouraging others to do the same, then check out our part-time and full-time career opportunities.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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
© 2019 Naperville Park District