Fairfax County Park Authority Earns Environmental Stewardship Award

Lake Fairfax Park/Courtesy: Fairfax County Park AuthorityThe Fairfax County Park Authority (FCPA) has earned national recognition for its environmental stewardship.

FCPS has been named the winner of the National Recreation and Park Association’s (NRPA) 2016 Barb King Environmental Stewardship Award, which recognizes a parks and recreation agency that has achieved excellence in environmental stewardship.

This national recognition pays tribute to the Park Authority’s growing commitment to protection of natural resources in Fairfax County, says a release from FCPA.

From the FCPA:

Enhancing Stewardship is listed first among the seven values that guide the FCPA, and the agency has a long list of stewardship accomplishments that were included in its award application.

The nomination noted that parkland in the county grew from just 14 acres to more than 23,500 acres over the agency’s 65-year history. It cited environmental design practices, such as the renovation of the Oak Marr RECenter which earned LEED Silver Certification.

Also noted was the agency’s emphasis on community outreach, through teacher-student programs such as the Meaningful Watershed Education Experience (MWEE) program, the production of popular, award-winning stewardship publications, volunteer environmental clean-up days at park sites, summer camp education programs, and Leave No Trace workshops.

Other actions considered by the NRPA include the FCPA’s support of the “buy local” environmental movement as evidenced by sponsorship of 11 community farmers markets, its work in establishing an environmentally preferable purchasing policy, and the 2015 Needs Assessment that surveyed 15,000 randomly selected Fairfax County households to assess how the Park Authority is meeting community needs, including the preservation of open space and protection of our parklands.

The Barb King Environmental Stewardship Award will be presented at the NRPA Conference in St. Louis, Missouri, on Oct. 6 at the Best of the Best Ceremony.

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