This week, we look at a Progress Report for our important Sustainable Parks initiative, and celebrate yet another fantastic volunteer event in Queens.
Last Week at Parks:
Sustainable Parks 2012 Progress Report
In July 2011, we published the inaugural Sustainable Parks Plan to create a cohesive structure for measuring, improving, and communicating the agency’s varied sustainability initiatives. To ensure accountability and to celebrate Earth Day, a progress report was released on April 23 on the Parks website. The report focuses on individual Parkies and how their personal sustainability commitments through the green pledge campaign are going, as well as on progress toward the goals and metrics defined in the original Plan. 78% of the 41 milestones are complete or in progress. Read more about how, in the past several months, NYC Parks has improved employee and public engagement around sustainability, decreased greenhouse gas emissions, expanded leaf composting and recycling, and incorporated sustainability into the design and construction of parks at: http://www.nycgovparks.org/greening/sustainable-parks/
Pitch in for Parks
On April 7, we held the eighth annual Pitch in for Parks event in Queens. The event brings volunteers to help clean and beautify our baseball fields. Despite being rained out on March 31, a total of 585 tenacious volunteers were still able to commit to the rain date a week later. At nine parks around the borough, groups painted benches, bleachers and retaining walls, cleared fence lines, and removed leaves and debris totaling 843 bags—a significant increase from last year’s total of 600 bags. At our press site, Brookville Park, more than 100 kids from the Rosedale Little League cleaned the fields, collecting 317 bags of leaves and debris. To cap off the experience, the New York Mets treated the participating little leaguers to Tuesday night’s game at Citi Field. We have been working with a number of groups to develop ongoing relationships to maintain the fields throughout the season.
Since being assigned to the Salt Marsh Nature Center, Urban Park Ranger Christina Knoll has distinguished herself as an outstanding environmental interpreter. She has conducted close to 100 ”Natural Classroom” and “Weekend Adventure” programs and has spread the ideals of park stewardship to the hundreds of schoolchildren whose classes she has visited or has led on tours of the parks in Brooklyn. Christina also facilitates numerous public programs that deal with our climate and climate change. She has cultivated a loyal attendance at her weekly impromptu birding tours. In addition, Christina has developed and run several impromptu programs that encourage park patrons to peer through spotting scopes and flip through field guides in order to explore the salt marsh ecosystem at Marine Park. Christina graduated from the University of Rhode Island in 2011 with a BS in Wildlife and Conservation Science, and in her short time at Parks, she has already made wonderful contributions.
QUOTATION FOR THE DAY
“It will be a great place if they ever finish it.”
(1862 – 1910)