KC Parks News

  1. Get your Bottle of Blue! Unique Memento Supports Kansas City Fountains

    Show your pride for both the Royals and the City of Kansas City, Missouri, by acquiring a commemorative bottle of blue fountain water. Eight major City fountains will flow blue throughout the World Series, and small bottles of blue water are being sold for $5 each as good luck souvenirs. All proceeds go to the City of Fountains Foundation.

    Mayor Sly James, foundation board member Pat O’Neill, Director of Kansas City Parks and Recreation Mark McHenry and Blue Valley Labs President Waymon Hofheins announced the sale of #KCTrueBlue 2014 blue water this morning by scooping water from the J.C. Nichols Memorial Fountain into commemorative bottles at the Country Club Plaza.

    The 4-ounce bottles are being sold at Plaza Customer Service, 4750 Broadway Blvd. (near the corner of Ward Parkway), Kansas City, Missouri; 816-753-0100. Hours are 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday and noon-6 p.m. Sunday. The water is non-potable and for display purposes only.

    “Sure, you have a Royals T-shirt and maybe a ball cap, but do you have this?” asked Mayor James as he dunked a commemorative bottle into the blue spray of the J.C. Nichols Fountain. “It would be a great stocking stuffer or treasured keepsake from this outstanding baseball season. Go Royals!”

  2. {NEWS} Unique #KCTrueBlue Memento Goes On Sale Oct. 22

    WHAT: Blue water from Kansas City’s best-known and most-photographed fountain will be scooped into commemorative bottles to launch the sale of blue fountain water. Residents and tourists may purchase these bottles for $5 each to show pride for the Royals and the City of Kansas City, Missouri. All proceeds go to the City of Fountains Foundation.

    WHO: Mayor Sly James, City of Fountains Foundation board member Pat O’Neill, KC Parks Director Mark L. McHenry

    WHEN: Wednesday, Oct. 22, 9:30 a.m.

    WHERE: J.C. Nichols Memorial Fountain at 47th Street and J.C. Nichols Parkway

    WHY: To announce the sale of #KCTrueBlue 2014 blue fountain water at Plaza Customer Service, 4750 Broadway Blvd. (near the corner of Ward Parkway), Kansas City, Mo. Eight major Kansas City fountains will flow blue throughout the World Series games.


  3. KC Parks Earns National Accreditation in Parks and Recreation

    Accrediataion awardKansas City, Missouri Parks and Recreation joins the ranks of the elite park and recreation agencies and departments across the country by once again earning accreditation through the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) and the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA).  This distinguished accomplishment was awarded during the 2014 NRPA Congress and Exposition.

    CAPRA accreditation is the only national accreditation for park and recreation agencies, and is a measure of an agency’s overall quality of operation, management and service to the community.  This mark of distinction indicates that an agency has met rigorous standards related to the management and administration of lands, facilities, resources, programs, safety and services.

    As part of the accreditation process,KC Parks had to demonstrate compliance with 144 recognized standards and document all policies and procedures. Often the process helps identify efficiencies and heighten areas of accountability, all of which translate into higher quality service and operation to benefit the community.

    The process for accreditation involves self-assessments, a formal application, a site visit by a team of trained visitors that results in a written report, and a hearing with the commission to grant accreditation. Once accredited, the agency must uphold the standards and is reviewed again in five years. KC Parks received its first accreditation in 1999 and has continuously maintained its status as an accredited agency.

    The Commission is comprised of representatives from NRPA, the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration, the National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials, the International City/County Management Association, the American Association for Physical Activity and Recreation, the Armed Forces Recreation Society and the Council of State Executive Directors.

    For more information about CAPRA accreditation, visit www.nrpa.org/CAPRA.

    The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing park, recreation and conservation efforts that enhance quality of life for all people. Through its network of 40,000 recreation and park professionals and citizens, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit www.NRPA.org.  For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit www.parksandrecreation.org.


  4. Multiple Races Impact Weekend Traffic

    KCRaceDay_WordMark_rgb-01On Saturday, the Waddell and Reed Kansas City Marathon will take place. There will be a marathon, ½ marathon, 5k and a kids route.  The races are scheduled to begin at 7:30 a.m. and end at 1:30 p.m. For a race map or more information visit http://kcraceday.org/races/waddell-reed-kansas-city-marathon-ivy-funds/ or contact Sarah Dee at 816-377-6971.

    The marathon will begin at 22nd Street and Grand Avenue, go north through Downtown, south on Main toward the Liberty Memorial, through Westport, Brookside, the Plaza then returns to the finish line at 18th  Street and Grand Avenue. The ½ Marathon will also take place in that area. The 5k will begin at 22nd Street and Grand Avenue and finish at Pershing and Main Street.  The Kids Route will begin at Pershing and Main streets, go toward 26ht Street, loop on Pennway Street and finish at Pershing and Main Streets. Expect street closures throughout the race area.

    The Barstow School Mind, Body, Character 5K Run/Walk will take place from 7:30 -11:30 a.m. on Saturday in the area of Barstow School, 11511 State Line Road. The race begins at the school and proceeds to 112th and Summit and then returns to the school. For a race map or more information visit http://kcraceday.org/races/barstow-school-mind-body-character-5k-runwalk-wellness-expo// or contact Megan Culver at 816-695-5874.

  5. Mayor James appoints Amber Hackett to Parks and Recreation Board of Commissioners

    Amber-Hackett-headshot{NEWS} October 14, 2014–Today, Mayor Sly James appointed Amber Hackett to the Board of Parks and Recreation Commissioners. Hackett was nominated for the board appointment through the Mayor’s Women’s Empowerment (WE) Initiative to include more women in positions of leadership in city government. The Women’s Foundation’s Appointment Project, which launched in April based on Women’s Foundation research conducted as part of the WE Initiative, is dedicated to increasing civic leadership opportunities for women. Today’s announcement marks the third appointment through the Appointments Project.

    Hackett has worked in the Kansas City nonprofit sector since 2011 and currently serves as the Director of Corporate and Community Relations at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kansas City. She is also a licensed attorney and an active community volunteer.

    “I’m pleased to announce Amber Hackett’s appointment to the Board of Parks and Recreation. Her background in both the non-profit and legal sectors, combined with her dedication to our community, makes her a solid choice for this position. A big thanks goes out to the Women’s Foundation for their leadership in nominating Ms. Hackett, further showcasing their commitment to building a stronger Kansas City,” said Mayor James.

    Wendy Doyle, President and CEO of Women’s Foundation, said, “We are delighted our partnership with Mayor James’s office has led to another qualified and deserving woman being appointed to an important city position. We have no doubt that Ms. Hackett will serve the City well on the Parks and Recreation Board.”

    “When women are asked, women serve; I’m a perfect example,” said Hackett. “I am honored and look forward to serving Kansas City on the Parks Board and am extremely grateful to the Women’s Foundation for their Appointments Project, an important initiative that is helping Mayor James’ office elevate women into more positions of leadership. There are many qualified, trained women in our community who are perfect for board service, but are too often overlooked or not asked.  I hope my appointment is part of the spark that the Women’s Foundation and Mayor James have created to ignite continued success for Kansas City.”

    The Appointments Project serves as a talent bank, advisor, and advocate for women seeking opportunities to lead their communities and works to attract diverse applicants for appointed positions on boards and commissions. The Women’s Foundation guides women through the process of applying for these positions and recommends applicants for appointment.

    The Parks and Recreation department is governed by a volunteer five-member Board of Parks and Recreation Commissioners who are appointed by the Mayor. The Kansas City Parks and Recreation department maintains close to 12,000 acres of parkland including 220 parks, 134 miles of trails and bikeways, 29 lakes, 98 playgrounds, hundreds of athletic fields and tennis courts, ten community centers, five public golf courses, and six museums. Additionally, miles of scenic boulevards and parkways crisscross the city, featuring 48 fountains and 117 memorials and sculptures.

    Other partners in the Mayor’s WE initiative include UMKC’s Women’s Center and Central Exchange.  UMKC’s Women’s Center is connecting a new generation of leaders interested in public service with internships in city government.  Central Exchange is leading outreach efforts between women-owned businesses and the City of Kansas City.

    More information on the activities of the Mayor’s Women’s Empowerment Initiative can be found here: http://kcmayor.org/we. Individuals interested in applying to serve on a Kansas City, Missouri board or commission throught the Appointments Project can learn more here: http://www.wfgkc.org/our-work/appointments-project/.

  6. How Blue Are You? #KCTrueBlue Contest

    How blue are you? Send in your photos or videos to #KCtrueblue


    Is your KCMO yard—or neighborhood or business or school—decked out in blue these days? Show your true blue support for Kansas City, Missouri, and the Royals by entering the City’s photo/video contest recognizing the team’s performance in the playoffs. Winning entries will creatively combine Kansas City and Royals pride!

    Post your creative efforts using #kctrueblue on Twitter @kcmo, Facebook or Instagram. Your photo or video may be featured on our social media accounts and on Channel 2, the City’s cable TV station.

    Prizes will be awarded for the best decorations in the following categories: house/yard, car, neighborhood/block, school, business, nonprofit, pet and musical entry. Decorations made by kids under 12 and by out-of-town fans also will be recognized. For Royals fans who live in other countries – please be creative about showing a landmark from that country combined with Kansas City and Royals pride. Entries will be accepted through Sunday, Oct. 19.

    PHOTO CAPTION: This a good example of #KCTrueBlue, showing, Harley, in her Royals gear, in front of a KCMO city fountain.