New Regional Parks Map reflects the rich cultural heritage of our region

Posted In: Communities, Parks
Date: 9/12/2017

People from a wide variety of communities, and many ages and abilities, will see themselves reflected in the Council’s newly updated Regional Parks Map.

Kalpulli KetzalCoatlicue is a dance group that performs at many venues around the metro area, including Nokomis Regional Park for the annual Monarch Festival. This image appears in the parks map.With more than two dozen photos, the colorful publication celebrates the diversity of people who visit the parks and trails, and the four seasons of park activities. Woven into the patchwork of photos are short phrases in a variety of languages that welcome visitors from around the world. Words and phrases for “family,” “connection,” celebrate,” “relax” and more are printed in Arabic, Hmong, Somali, Spanish, and English.

“We wanted residents see themselves in the parks—whether alone, in small groups or large groups—and show park amenities as open, fun, inviting and compelling places to visit, right here in our own communities,” said Emmett Mullin, manager of the Council’s Regional Parks & Natural Resources unit.

The folding map and guide helps people locate regional parks and shows what activities are available in each one, using icons that are understood in any language.


Maps will be available at regional parks, libraries and other locations

The map will be provided free of charge at regional parks and libraries, some cities and counties, some schools and stores, and other public places. They can also be ordered by leaving a message on the Council’s Public Comment Line at 651.602.1500 or emailing the Council at public.info@metc.state.mn.us.

Map helps reach people who haven’t yet visited the parks

Cover of updated Regional Parks Map.The updated map is an outgrowth of the Council’s research that showed some communities of color and immigrants do not use the parks in proportion to their share of the region’s overall population. The Council embarked on an extensive community engagement effort to identify barriers to participation and is working with communities and park agencies to overcome these.

One result is that the Council now has a new Parks Ambassador Program and has hired an outreach coordinator, Celina Martina. She is dedicated to reaching people who don’t currently visits parks and inviting them to learn more about our Regional Parks System. Martina uses the map as a tool in her work as people discover their regional parks and trails. She also has an accompanying “welcoming” piece that is written in four different languages, to increase people’s awareness of the great opportunities in the regional parks.

Regional Parks System at a glance

  • 54 regional parks and park reserves totaling 55,000 acres

  • 8 special recreation features (for example, Como Park Zoo and Conservatory)

  • Nearly 400 miles of regional trails

  • Nearly 48 million visitors in 2016

The popular map and guide is updated about once each decade.

More information

Posted In: Communities, Parks

Tags: Map, parks

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