Member News

  • 8 Nov 2022 2:41 PM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    The MRPA election for the Board of Directors and Recreational Sports Commission (RSC) begins this week. MRPA will again use the online platform, Election Runner, to ensure the integrity of the election. Election Runner will send an email this week from MRPA titled, Vote in the Election: MRPA Board of Directors. Watch your inbox for the online ballot, and check your spam folder if you don’t receive this email. Also, if your system is set-up to send emails to your inbox under “Focused” or “Other,” please check the “Other” folder.

    *Contributing members will not receive an election email.  Only MRPA professional members have voting rights.  Thank you.

    Click on the following links to view the Board of Directors and RSC nominee profiles:
    President-Elect and Treasurer 
    East and West Metro Regions
    Northeast and Northwest Regions
    RSC Profiles

    Please contact Michelle Snider with any questions at We hope this format offers an accessible way to vote again this year. Thank you!

  • 8 Nov 2022 12:14 PM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    The MRPA Board of Directors approved a request for proposals (RFP) for a consultant to provide the following services: conduct a membership survey and needs assessment, propose a staffing model to serve members’ needs, and establish a funding sustainability plan.

    Click here to read the RFP. The RFP has been sent to a list of consultants. If any member has a consultant contact who may be interested, please share the RFP and provide the name and company name to MRPA at

  • 6 Oct 2022 7:23 AM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    The MRPA Nominations and Elections Committee is currently seeking nominations for the following positions for the Association's Board of Directors:

    • President-Elect (3 years)
    • Treasurer (2 years)
    • Northeast Region Representative (2 years) - 1 position
    • Northwest Region Representative (2 years) - 1 position
    • East Metro Representative (2 years) - 1 position
    • West Metro Representative (2 years) - 1 position
    • Recreational Sports Commission Chair (2 years) - 1 position

    In addition, the Recreational Sports Commission (RSC) is seeking nominations for the following position: At-Large Member.

    Nominations should be forwarded by Wednesday, October 21 by email to Chuck Stifter at


  • 21 Sep 2022 8:10 AM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    The 2022 MRPA Awards Committee is calling for Professional Award nominations to recognize individuals in six different categories: Clifton E. French, Dorothea Nelson, Jack Niles, Leadership, Horizon and Board and Commission Members.  The nomination form can be completed here: All nominations must be submitted by October 9, 2022.

    Please take a moment to recognize a fellow member's outstanding work by nominating your colleague for a MRPA professional award.

    Thank you, 

    Chelsea Swenhaugen and Elizabeth Owens, Co-Chairs
    MRPA Awards Committee 2022

  • 19 Sep 2022 10:55 AM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    The Emerging Recreation Leaders Institute (ERLI) 2 will meet on five days during the fall of 2022, beginning on Thursday, September 29.  This professional development program is designed to provide a curriculum centered on the five Ps - Personal Leadership, People, Process, Project Management, and Presentation.  There are 1.5 CEUs available for this institute.  Visit the education page for further information.

  • 23 Aug 2022 11:08 AM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announces a grant opportunity for the National Outdoor Recreation Legacy Partnership (ORLP) Program. The ORLP program, funded through the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), is a nationally competitive grant program.  Applicants must be cities with a population of 30,000 or more according to the 2020 Census. The proposed project must serve the specific needs of a community that is severely lacking in walkable, publicly accessible, outdoor recreation ("park deserts"). In addition, the area in which the proposed project is taking place must have a poverty rate of at least 20% or that is at least 10% higher than that of the project city, county, and state rates.

    To be eligible, an applicant must be one of the following:

    1. Cities with a population of at least 30,000 according to the 2020 Census. Eligible cities with population 30,000 or more  PDF.
    2. Counties and special purpose park districts with park projects within or abutting a city with a population of at least 30,000 according to the 2020 Census.
    3. State agencies with park projects within or abutting a city with a population of at least 30,000 according to the 2020 Census.

    Eligible projects include acquisition or development (or a combination) of lands and facilities that will provide outdoor recreation opportunities to the public. All projects must meet requirements for perpetual outdoor recreation use.

    The ORLP Program has $192 million available nationwide. The minimum grant is $300,000 and the maximum is $10,000,000. Projects require a minimum of 1:1  match from non-federal sources.

    Additional information and application materials are available on the DNR program webpage, National Outdoor Recreation Legacy Partnership (ORLP) Program | Minnesota DNR ( Round 1 applications are due to the DNR by December 20, 2022, Round 2 applications are due to the DNR by April 25, 2023.

    They are in the process of posting a revised application based on additional guidance from the National Park Service. 

    If you have any questions, contact program staff: Audrey at, 651.259.5549 or Mai Neng at, 651.259.5638.

  • 23 Jun 2022 8:19 AM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    The 29th Annual Minnesota USSSA Hall of Fame Benefit Golf Tournament will be held on Friday, September 30 at Theodore Wirth Golf Course in Minneapolis.  Shotgun start time will be at 10 am.

    The Minnesota USSSA Hall of Fame will benefit from the proceeds. You can register to play on your own or you can put together a team of your friends, colleagues, and/or softball buddies. You’ll be able to enjoy a late summer day on the greens, while helping provide support for Minnesota USSSA Hall of Fame.

    If you are not interested in playing, there is an opportunity to contribute as a hole sponsor or cash/merchandise contributor.  All donations welcome!

    Golf Registration and Sponsorship Form

    Click here to pay online

  • 14 Jun 2022 12:27 PM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    The all new MRPA Forums will launch next week. You will be receiving an email directly from the MRPA website with your unique password. 

    You can login by clicking the forum(s) you would like to join on the forums page under membership at

    This site is provided as a service for the members of MRPA.  To ensure the best experience for all members, we have established some basic guidelines at  

    Please take a moment to acquaint yourself with these important guidelines. Thank you!

  • 7 Jun 2022 9:10 AM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    Welcome to MRPA On the Air - a podcast for Minnesota Recreation and Park Association members and friends. Hosts Bryce and Meredith discuss everything parks and recreation throughout the entire state of Minnesota, including the latest MRPA news and events and what's going on in your association. MRPA is grateful to Landscape Structures and Flagship Recreation for their sponsorship of the podcast.

    Teaser Episode

    Today’s episode will introduce to you MRPA On The Air’s hosts, Bryce Shearen and Meredith Lawrence. Get to know the podcast hosts, and how they began in the parks and recreation profession. They’ll also share what listeners can expect from this new podcast.

  • 2 Jun 2022 10:18 AM | Bethani Gerhard (Administrator)

    The summer issue of the MRPA magazine will arrive in early July.  This will include the 2022 Annual Conference brochure.  For further information on the conference, visit

Minnesota Recreation & Park Association (MRPA)
200 Charles Street NE
Fridley, MN 55432

(763) 571-1305

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