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Posted October 18, 2021 | 11:00 AM

Hillsborough County Parks & Recreation Earns Prestigious Accreditation

Hillsborough County, Fla. (Oct. 18, 2021) - New inclusive playgrounds. More and better fields for soccer, baseball, football, and lacrosse. A commitment to recreation opportunities for everybody. Hillsborough County's dedication to all of these community assets has earned Hillsborough County Parks & Recreation accreditation through the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) and the National Recreation and Park Association (NPRA).

Hillsborough County Parks & Recreation first earned the prestigious CAPRA accreditation, which stays in effect for five years, in 2016. To pass the reaccreditation process, Parks & Recreation had to demonstrate compliance with more than 150 standards from quality of operations to management to service to the community. 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.

Among Hillsborough County Parks & Recreation's recent accomplishments:

  • Manages 167 parks, 53 recreation centers, and 118 playgrounds serving an area of 1,020 square miles.
  • After-school and summer programming with more than 10,000 participants in the last three years.
  • Offers 350 recreational and education programs serving nearly 6,000 children, adults, seniors, and people with disabilities.
  • Adaptive sports program for people with disabilities that provides ongoing programs in multiple sports, including wheelchair basketball, track and field, tennis, swimming and archery for more than 300 athletes.
  • Athletic Turf Program Initiative that is improving more than 100 high-use sports fields in at-risk communities.
  • Converted a decommissioned wastewater treatment plant into Carrollwood Village Park. The park's playground, splash pad, pump track, fitness challenge course, and walking trail attract more than 71,000 visitors monthly.
  • Tree-management program that includes evaluation of 11,000 trees and planting of an additional 27,000 trees by 2024 to mitigate effects of urbanization.

CAPRA 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 Academy for Leisure Sciences, the Armed Forces Recreation Network and the Council of State Executive Directors.

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