On Saturday, March 11, the Parks Foundation hosted its annual St. Paddy’s for Kids event in its new location: Luepke and Marshall Community Centers. Little leprechauns showed up in droves throughout 10am and 2pm to journey through Ireland. Each room correlated to an Irish city; they started off in Cork (Luepke Lobby), then made their way through Dublin (Luepke Community Room), then up north to Donegal (Marshall Center), and back down to Galway (Luepke Conference Room), where they would get a prize. The families enjoyed dancing performances by the An Daire Academy of Irish Dance, storytime with the Fort Vancouver Regional Library, learning about water cycles from the Clark PUD Stream Team, and shaking their wiggles out with Northwest Personal Training, as well as delicious hot dogs from The Nomad’s Gourmet Hot Dogs.
There were 28 vendors in total that spread throughout the Luepke Center and into the Marshall Center gymnasium, where kids could learn how to kick a soccer ball with Soccer Shots, learn how to break boards with East West Martial Arts, and learn all about recreation programs that the Marshall Center has to offer. The day provided lots of prizes, raffles, sensory games, sports, and lots of fun.
A big thank you to our sponsors iQ Credit Union, Waste Connections, The Vancouver Clinic, and Riverview Community Bank.
The Parks Foundation of Clark County has named Dianna Kretzschmar as Executive Director. She will start her new position on Wednesday, March 15, 2017.
Kretzschmar is a strong community leader and passionate advocate for many causes throughout Clark County. She has worked in Southwest Washington as a social worker and clinical case manager in long-term health care for almost 30 years. She serves on the boards of the Friends of the Elder Justice Center and Mobile Medical Providers Northwest. She previously served as the first program coordinator for the Clark County Elder Justice Center in the Clark County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. In that role, she was instrumental in establishing the center, which educates, coordinates and fosters cooperation between professionals and public workers to find and prosecute cases of elder abuse. She is also a 2013 Clark College Foundation Iris Award Winner. Kretzschmar also served as Community Outreach Coordinator for the Clark County Vulnerable Adult Task Force. She is a volunteer for many community organizations including Share, where she spearheaded the successful #every28days campaign, the School of Piano Technology for the Blind, Battle Ground Healthcare and The Children’s Center.
“I am so very honored to follow in the footsteps of such amazing women. Cheri Martin and Temple Lentz are personal heroes of mine and to build upon the work they have done, humbles me, “ says Kretzschmar. “To go to work daily to further the cause that community treasure, Flossie Wager, held near and dear to her heart is such a dream come true for me.”
“We are thrilled that Dianna will be joining the Parks Foundation. Her passion and commitment to this community is an asset to our organization, “ says Renee Wilson, Board President of the Parks Foundation.
Children and families came out in droves Wednesday, January 11, to Sorenson Park during Clark County’s “Snowpocalypse 2017!” The December opening of Clark County’s newest park came just in time for kids and snow lovers alike to test out its sledding hill.
This 4.8-acre park is located at the junction of Northwest 26th Avenue and Northwest 109th Street, and was developed in 2016 as part of the Greater Clark Parks District program, after many years of advocating and planning. It offers state-of-art playground equipment in two areas, open green and walking spaces, benches, basketball half court, picnic tables, nature play area that includes boulders, lily pads and a dragon made out of logs and, of course, the sledding hill.
Help support our Clark County parks by leaving a legacy in Sorenson Park with purchasing an engraved paver! Each 8″ x 8″ paver is just $125, and can hold up to three lines of text, up to 18 characters per line, including spaces. Funds raised through the sale of these pavers go back to support Clark County Parks. For more information, please click here.
The popular Teen Late Night program through Vancouver Parks & Recreation is back again for Fall 2016. Starting October 14, teens between the ages of 11 and 18 come every Friday night to either the Firstenburg or Marshall Centers for a free, safe space to enjoy recreational activities with their peers. Between 8pm and 11pm, teens from all social and economic backgrounds come together to learn trust, respect, self-esteem, consistency, and integrity in a positive environment through teamwork, social interaction, and sportsmanship.
A participate from the program states, “For me, Late Night has been such a positive influence in my life. There have been times where things weren’t looking so good in my day. I came to Late Night and experienced such fairness, structure and a caring staff who listens…. Thanks Late Night for giving me a safe place to be myself.”
“Teen Late Night makes a difference in our community with over 300 teens hanging out in a safe and positive environment each week,” said David Perlick, Recreation Manager for Vancouver Parks & Recreation. “We’re thankful for the community support that allows us to continue offering this popular program.”
For more information on how you can participate at Teen Late night, please visit here.
To learn more about the Parks Foundation community grants and how to donate, please visit here.
The Washougal Bike Park Skills Course is holding its grand opening with a Kids Ride Party on Saturday, October 8 from 2:00pm to 4:30pm at Hamllik Park. The skills course, funded mostly through community support and grants from the Parks Foundation, features pre-fabricated ramps, logs, and rocks that can test the skills from beginner and beyond. Volunteers came together in August to build the course.
“The City of Washougal has been very pleased with the response from the community to this project. Hundreds of volunteer hours and thousands of donated dollars have built the first phase of the Washougal Bike Park,” said Suzanne Grover, Parks, Cemetery and Facilities Manager for the City of Washougal. “We partnered with the Parks Foundation, Camas Bike & Sport, and other great businesses and citizens to build an engaging activity for kids and adults alike. If not for the contributions by the community, we would not have made it this far, so we are grateful for the people who saw value in this project and wanted to build it with us. Thank you to everyone!”
The grand opening will celebrate the sponsors and builders of the course and will offer bike handling skills and safety techniques before riding the course. Treats will be provided by The Hungry’s Bakery. Helmets are required to participate in the Kids Ride Party. For more information, please visit www.camasbikes.com.
Schedule of Events:
2:00PM – Sign-in for Ride Party and required bike safety check
2:30PM – Ribbon cutting and thank you
2:45-4:00PM – Kids ride through the park features
4:00-4:30PM – Treats by The Hungry’s Bakery and prizes
The Washougal Bike Park is located at Bill Hamllik Park, 4285 Addy Street in Washougal.
On September 22, the community came out to support the Parks Foundation by showing off their keen skills on swing sets around Clark County for Swing More 24, part of Give More 24, Southwest Washington’s day of giving. The day started off in Esther Short Park where the Mayor of Vancouver, Tim Leavitt, was joined by city councilors, community leaders, local businesses, and Parks Foundation Board Members to raise money by taking a turn on the swing for 15 minutes.
Clark County councilors Marc Boldt and Julie Olson, Auditor Greg Kimsey, Assessor Peter Van Nortwick, and other Clark County officials took to the swings at Stockford Village Park in Hazel Dell. Mayor Scott Higgins and Camas city officials showed their skills at Crown Park, and the City of Ridgefield’s Mayor Ron Onslow and city councilors and staff showed their support at Davis Park. The day ended at LeRoy Haagen Memorial Park with the help from volunteers from New Season’s Market. Thank you to Burgerville, who offered samples of their blackberry lemonade to participants and park goers at Esther Short Park.
A very special thank you goes to Vancouver City Mayor Pro Tem Anne McEnerny-Ogle, was scheduled to be out of town on the day of the event but cared so much about supporting the cause that she went out in advance. On the Sunday before Give More, Councilor McEnerny-Ogle rallied children and families to play in the park for 5 minutes. For every 5-minute play period, kids placed a sticker on a poster, and at the end, a donor gave $5 for each sticker. Thank you, Anne, for your enthusiasm about parks!
As part of Give More 24, Southwest Washington’s annual day of online philanthropy (www.Give-More-24.org), the Parks Foundation is bringing back Swing More 24, a fun, interactive way to raise funds to support parks, trails and recreation throughout Clark County.
On Thursday, September 22, local people, including mayors and city councilors, business owners and employees, the Parks Foundation board, and other community members, will take to the swings and ask for community support during their “swing shift.”
On Thursday September 22, go to www.tinyurl.com/swingmore
Schedules as of September 13.
Esther Short Park, Vancouver (415 W. 6th Street, Vancouver 98660)
9:00am Scott Knight, Davidson Insurance
9:15am Jonathan Bicker, Davidson Insurance
9:30am Tim Leavitt, Vancouver Mayor
9:45am Ty Stober, Vancouver City Council
10:00am Jack Burkman and Bart Hansen, Vancouver City Council
10:15am Impactful Women NW
11:15am Jane Van Dyke, Clark County PUD Commissioner
11:30am Larry Smith, Parks Foundation Board
12:00pm Jim Mains and Gary Bock, The Vancouver Side
12:45pm Megan Strand, Parks Foundation Board
1:00pm Clark County Association of REALTORs: Jo Ann Johnston, Brian Pelky, James Holcomb
2:00pm John Blom, Candidate for Clark County Council
Crown Park, Camas (120 NE 17th Ave, Camas, WA 98607)
10:00-11:00am Camas City Council and friends
Camas Mayor pro-tem Shannon Turk and other members of city council and the parks board will be joined by members of Camas Partners for Parks and Recreation to support Camas parks, trails, and recreation programs. Come check it out and help fill the swings!
Davis Park, Ridgefield (Downtown at Main and Mill Street, Ridgefield 98642)
1:00-2:00pm Mayor Ron Onslow and friends
Mayor Ron and members of the city council, parks board, and friends will be out to support Ridgefield parks and trails. Come check it out and help fill the swings!
Stockford Village Park, Hazel Dell (NE 105th Street and NE Ninth Avenue)
2:00-3:00pm Clark County Elected Officials and Parks Division
Council Chair Marc Boldt
Councilor Julie Olson
Auditor Greg Kimsey
Assessor Peter Van Nortwick
Parks Manager Bill Bjerke
LeRoy Haagen Park, East Vancouver (13198 NE 9th St, 98684)
3:00pm-6:00pm Staff from New Seasons Fisher’s Landing
Staff and friends from Main Street Dental
Mary Sisson, Kazoodles Toys
On August 15, community members came together at Camas Meadows Golf Club for a round of golf to support the Parks Foundation. Title Sponsor Waste Connections led the pack with multiple teams, and players were checked in smoothly and quickly by our veteran registration volunteers from Registration Sponsor iQ Credit Union. Players arrived early and were welcomed with a delicious boxed lunch from Mill Creek Pub, then set out for a gorgeous afternoon in the warm sun.
Waterfront Vancouver USA supplied Vancouver’s own Loowit Brewery’s Shadow Ninja IPA at hole 5, and The Blind Onion and Pacific Office Automation sponsored the popular beverage carts. Columbia Credit Union kept players hydrated with cold bottled water on the courtesy cart, with water and soda generously donated by Corwin Beverage Company.
At the awards dinner sponsored by Schwabe, Williamson and Wyatt, we honored the tournament winners, runners up, and winners of our fantastic raffle and silent auction items, all generously donated by businesses and individuals throughout our community. Congratulations to teams Vesta Hospitality and Garrett Sign, who took first and second place in the Men’s Division, and Team Stevens and Waste Connections, who took first and second place in the Mixed Division. Winners of the Straight Drive competition were Brian Combs and Tracy McMahon.
Thank you to all of our sponsors: Waste Connections; iQ Credit Union; Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt; Vesta Hospitality; Team Construction; insureQ; Shorty’s Garden and Home; Columbia Credit Union; Mill Creek Pub; The Blind Onion; Pacific Office Automation; The Vancouver Waterfront USA; Vancouver Rehabilitation & Therapy; Farrar’s Bistro; WE Plan It; Farleigh Wada Witt; Vancouver Energy; and Double V Distillery.
It was a great day for parks, and we are so happy you shared it with us!
Battle Ground Parks and Recreation had another successful summer with their Summer Playground Program. Every Tuesday through Thursday for nine weeks, children enjoyed making arts and crafts between 2pm and 4pm at five different parks each week: four in Battle Ground and one in Ridgefield on Tuesdays. Morning sessions were also held between 10am and noon at the four Battle Ground locations. Each week had its own theme, which included fun with colors, history, construction zones, and personal safety. The summer playground program served over 2,100 youth, which is an approximate 5% increase from 2015.
According to Debbi Hanson, Director of Battle Ground Parks and Recreation, the children particularly enjoyed week three’s Duct Tape Mania and week six’s Westward Ho! New this year was week five’s very popular Police Academy, where youth could meet police officers, tour their vehicles, and learn some basics about keeping themselves and their community safe. Other popular activities included water play in kiddie pools with sponges and balls, magic bubbles, chalk art and hula hoops.
The Summer Playground Program is made possible by support from Riverview Community Bank, Banner Bank, and a community grant from the Parks Foundation of Clark County.
To learn more about or support community grants, please visit here.
We envision thriving partnerships with communities to ensure uncommonly vibrant parks, trails, and recreation programs throughout Clark County.