Thursday, June 16, 2011

Wait, there's more than just parks at the park district?

Not too many of us go out much anymore, I sure don't. Maybe it's just my age, or that I work nights and sleep during the day so my free time is during the dark hours of Springfield when nothing but Denny's, Walmart or the grocery stores are open. It might have something to do with having a minimum wage part-time job with no benefits and a schedule that changes weekly so I can't have a second job.

Botanical Garden in Washington Park
At least I can go to the park once in a while when it's not raining. That's pretty much my impression of the Springfield Park District. Occasionally I'll hear about some events like fireworks at the Carillon. There is beautiful indoor botanical garden at Washington Park.

I saw an article in the State Journal-Register "Springfield Park District should broaden movie choices" that astonished my notion of what the park district offered. I had no idea they had movies. What's more astonishing is that I was born in Springfield in 1964 and lived here until High school. My mother actually worked for the park district for a while. Shocking!

We didn't grow up with the Internet. We were limited to radio, television and the newspaper. It seems the Springfield Park District really doesn't have an advertising budget. If they have a section in the newspaper, it's either drowned-out by other events or the events listed don't seem to be associated with the park district. That's just my perspective. There might be an effort at public relations, but it's probably directed only at families with kids.

Families typically have shoe-string budgets. They wouldn't have a lot of money to spend so the Park District might be hard-pressed to get money from the city, especially under the current budget crisis.

If it wasn't for Brian Mackey's article in the State Journal-Register It never would have occurred to me to research the Springfield Park District's website [ ].

But since I'm a single man with no children who works nights, I wouldn't fit in at events, but at least I can get some exercise in nature swatting mosquitoes.