HOPEWELL, VA. Delegates from around the state gathered virtually this week at the 65th Annual Conference of the Virginia Recreation and Park Society. The conference provides an opportunity for recreation and park professionals to discuss areas of common interest, learn emerging trends in the industry, and acquire valuable professional development skills. Highlighting each year’s conference is a formal presentation of awards.  


    This statewide program honors individuals, departments and organizations throughout Virginia who have demonstrated excellence in any of several areas during the previous year. More than 90 applications were submitted vying for awards in 14 different categories.  Judged by a jury of its peers, Hopewell Recreation and Parks was recognized in four categories. Awards received are listed below:  


    • Best New Special Event Award – Jack-O-Lantern Jamboree 

    This Halloween celebration designed specifically for younger children and children with disabilities was held at the Hopewell Community Center and featured an indoor pumpkin patch, barrier-free obstacle course, messy classroom, spooky photo booth, and a variety of other family-friendly activities. The event served over 300 participants and was produced for less than $600. The program was made possible through a partnership with Special Olympics Virginia.  



    Best New Facility Award (Parks, playgrounds, in an effort to improve efficiency. The website was built from the ground up at an initial cost of $76. The website was designed internally by department staff who now maintain the site and update content all of its endeavors.  


    **The Hopewell Recreation and Parks Department offers a variety of recreational opportunities and facilities to improve the overall health and wellbeing of the community. The department oversees more than 200 acres of parks, playgrounds, and athletic facilities in addition to the Hopewell Community Center and Hopewell City Marina. The department offers hundreds of programs to thousands of participants of all ages and interests each <span class="ContextualSpellingAndGrammarError SCXW26262440 BCX4" style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; -webkit-user-select: text; -webkit-user-drag: none; background-image: url(" data:image="" gif;base64,r0lgodlhbqaeapedaabvzdnvzdnv="" waaach5bauaaamalaaaaaafaaqaaaiinc2qchykqgeaow="=&quot;);" border-bottom-width:="" 1px;="" border-bottom-style:="" solid;="" border-bottom-color:="" transparent;="" background-color:="" inherit;="" -webkit-nbsp-mode:="" normal="" !important;="" background-position:="" left="" bottom;="" background-repeat:="" repeat="" no-repeat;"="">year.**