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Proceedings of the 2008 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium


United States Department of Agriculture

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Recent research regarding the perceived benets of local parks has been limited, posing a problem for recreation and park directors who must promote the value of and gain support for aging park facilities. To collect evidence concerning the value of local parks and the impact of park upgrades, we conducted a study with one local park to (a) document behavioral changes that have occurred as a result of renovation, and (b) determine the perceived benets of having a community park. Two-thirds of respondents reported visiting the park more frequently since renovations were completed. When asked why they visit the park and what makes it an attractive or appealing place to visit, they indicated that the park has a great atmosphere, is a great place to play, is a “third place,” is a safe play space, reduces playground fatigue, and has meaning for individuals of all ages.