By aligning research-based best practices that foster inclusion, engagement with nature, and physical activity, 25 projects now serve as national models of how visionary leaders have thoughtfully put research into practice. The National Demonstration Sites created as a result of the statewide initiative, were intentionally designed to enrich and enhance the quality of life where citizens of Illinois live, work, and play. We are honored to highlight the phenomenal leadership of the IPRA Promotes Play Award Recipients and celebrate their success stories. These award recipients and their outdoor play and recreation projects inspire others to use play as a catalyst to build healthier, happier communities. Their efforts demonstrate how investing in parks and recreation results in positive outcomes, grows social capital, and builds strong communities through the power of play.
"I am grateful to each of our model demonstration sites and members for their participation in this research, and I greatly appreciate PlayCore, GameTime, and Cunningham Recreation for this multi-faceted partnership which will have ripple effects for years to come through our new community play spaces, research towards best practices, and the professional development that occurred across our state."
- Debbie Trueblood, Executive Director, Illinois Park and Recreation Association