July 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 47

3

Zoom will be a verb.

Web conferencing is an essential
part of how people keep up with
personal connections (Zoom birthday parties, anyone?) and professional responsibilities. The most
popular platform in the United
States is Zoom (43 percent market
share) followed by GoToWebinar
and Webex. In the United States
alone during March 2020, Zoom
had 300 million people in daily
meetings, while Webex logged 14
billion meeting minutes globally.
These virtual meetings have illustrated that not every meeting
needs to be in person or requires
people to jump on a plane or drive
several hours to attend. Additionally, while a digital divide still exists, virtual public meetings should
be a requirement in future park
system planning efforts to provide
additional engagement avenues for
those who can't attend in person.
Besides the obvious efficiencies for
time and travel costs, virtual meetings will positively impact the environment as we reduce our carbon
footprint (and buy fewer pants, too).

4

dards already require increased
personal protective equipment, including gloves and face masks, particularly for customer-facing environments. Agencies will implement
new cleaning guidelines for office
spaces and recreation facilities, resulting in increased staffing and additional time between classes and
rentals to ensure compliance. Park
structures and amenities, including
playgrounds, benches, picnic tables
and outdoor exercise equipment -
that were not expected to be sanitized previously - will require disinfecting as well.
Agencies may have dedicated
staffing positions (e.g., hygiene
stewards or chief hygiene officers)
to help monitor safe hygiene practices and physical distancing.
Needless to say, all of these will
result in incremental costs for departments that should look at opportunities to partner with hospitals and
hygiene and sanitizer product companies to provide the stamp of approval for their disinfecting practices.
Currently, the best marketing
pitch is not the newest facility nor
the cheapest program, but the safest experience.

5

Our understanding of
truly essential workers
will change.

Healthcare professionals, grocery
store workers and teachers are professions that have been repeatedly
highlighted, and deservedly, as essential workers.
At the same time, park and recreation professionals performed
all those roles. From handing out
masks (e.g., Hilton-Parma Parks
and Recreation, New York) and
providing emergency health services (e.g., Broward County Parks
and Recreation, Florida: drivethrough COVID-19 testing sites),
to serving meals (e.g., Baltimore
County Parks and Recreation,
Maryland, and Indy Parks and
Recreation, Indiana) and virtually
teaching everything from STEM
programs to baking - park and
recreation professionals did it all.
As we celebrate our essential
park and recreation professionals,
how can agencies and academic
institutions tell this story to attract
and recruit the Gen Z audience
that is not just looking to make
money, but rather make an impact?

Basic personal hygiene
and public sanitation
requirements will
increase by signi´Čücant
levels.

This was the number one trend participants agreed with personally.
Along with increased personal handwashing, public sanitation requirements and community expectations
will be significantly higher. The foremost question users will have as they
determine participation will be: " Is it
safe for me, my child or my family? "
The new safety and hygiene stan-

Virtual meeting platforms
illustrate that not every
meeting needs to be in person
or requires people to jump on
an airplane.

P A R K S A N D R E C R E AT I O N . O R G | J U LY 2 0 2 0 |

Parks & Recreation

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July 2020 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of July 2020 - Parks & Recreation

July 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 1
July 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 2
July 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 3
July 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 4
July 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 5
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