On September 14-16, 2014, the South Carolina Recreation and Parks Association annual conference was held in beautiful Hilton Head Island. Members of the BEACH Lab couldn’t pass up this opportunity to share our exciting parks-related projects with professionals from across the state and to enjoy all that Hilton Head has to offer (including an amazing beach!).
On Monday morning, Gina Besenyi and Andy Kaczynski kicked things off bright and early with an interactive presentation entitled “eCPAT: Engaging youth in the development and testing of an app for park research and policy actions”. The presentation (which can be found here) included an overview about the importance of parks and engaging youth through technology in community health promotion and advocacy efforts. The large crowd on hand was excited to test out the eCPAT app and had numerous suggestions about how it could be developed further and put to good use in communities across the state. You can read more about the eCPAT project here.
Later that afternoon, Melissa Fair finished off a great day with her presentation entitled “Park Hop: Inter-agency collaboration to promote park visitation and physical activity among youth in Greenville County, SC”. Melissa provided a comprehensive overview of Greenville’s Park Hop program, now in its second year as a collaboration between LiveWell Greenville and seven parks agencies from across Greenville County. The presentation (check it out here) included a wealth of information about the development and implementation of Park Hop and its goals to foster parks usage and discovery, foster awareness and appreciation of parks in Greenville County, increase time spent in PA during park visits, and establish an annual tradition for all to enjoy. Melissa also shared a wide variety of findings about Park Hop’s successes and lessons learned and a lively discussion ensued about adopting this innovative program in other municipalities across South Carolina. You can read more about the Park Hop program here and about the BEACH Lab’s Park Hop evaluation project here.
All in all, the SCRPA conference was a huge success as the BEACH Lab continues its mission of conducting and disseminating community-engaged research to improve physical activity and public health across the United States.