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Parks and Recreation Across the Nation Celebrate the Power of Parks this July

ASHBURN, VA., June 29, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Across the country people often seek out their parks and recreation facilities to get active, explore nature, and connect with friends and neighbors within their community. It is often known that these spaces provide enjoyment and entertainment, however, the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) wants all people to understand these same places also contribute to powerful benefits such as healthier people, higher property values and environmental sustainability. This July, in honor of the 30th Anniversary of Park and Recreation Month, NRPA and their 50,000 members celebrate the powerful impact community parks and recreation can have in everyone's lives.

First celebrated in July in 1985, Park and Recreation Month was created to promote the importance of parks and recreation in health and wellness, conservation and social equity, and to recognize the thousands of park and recreation employees that maintain our nation's state, local and community parks.

"During the past 30 years, parks and recreation have taken on more diverse and more essential tasks in the communities they serve," said Barbara Tulipane, President and CEO of NRPA. "In 2015, we want everyone to know that park and recreation agencies are more than programs, facilities and open spaces—they are true change agents, transforming communities and the lives of those they serve."

To showcase this impact, NRPA is releasing a short animated video and corresponding infographic titled, "Power of Parks," that illustrates the extent to which parks and recreation positively impact our economy, environment, health, communities and more. Park and recreation supporters can share and view the video at www.nrpa.org/july-power-of-parks/.

Park and recreation departments across the country will be celebrating Park and Recreation Month's 30th year in numerous ways, including 1980s-themed events and activities. NRPA encourages all people to get out to their nearest parks or recreation facilities and kick-it old school by enjoying some retro activities. A national list of Park and Recreation Month celebrations can be found at www.nrpa.org/july-events.

NRPA is also launching a Throwback Thursday Instagram Video Challenge—encouraging everyone to show how they can bring 80s flair to their local parks and recreation facilities in a 15-second Instagram video. Prizes will be awarded weekly on June 9, 16, 23 and 30. For rules and more information about the challenge, go to www.nrpa.org/july-challenge.

For more information about the video, contest, events and more, visit www.nrpa.org/july. Follow along with the 30th annual celebration of Park and Recreation Month by connecting with NRPA on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, or search hashtags #JulyPRM30 and #JulyTBTChallenge.

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 50,000 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 NRPA.org. For digital access to NRPA's flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit ParksAndRecreation.org.





A photo accompanying this release is available at: http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=34127

CONTACT: Roxanne Sutton, 703.858.2166, rsutton@nrpa.org, @NRPA_News

Source:National RecreationandPark Association