Every day LIN staff monitor hundreds of newspapers and broadcasters, dozens of listservs, web sites, government news sources, press releases and information supplied by our site users to bring you the latest and hottest in leisure, recreation, parks and healthy living. If you have relevant news or events you would like us to publicize, tell us about it.

Hit the (outdoor) gym

Added on Apr 27, 2015

With free, outdoor workout space on the rise globally, ranging from Los Angeles' highly visible “adult fitness zones” to more recent additions in Spain - known as a leader of the European outdoor-fitness-playground movement - China, and Hyde Park in London (UK). Calgary's nine outdoor gyms have been a little underused, probably due to a combination of weather and an inhibiting sense of propriety, but they're free and conveniently located througout the city.

Calgary Herald

Smoking ban sought for Brockville parks

Added on Apr 24, 2015

In an effort to harmonize Brockville's rules with those set by Smoke-Free Ontario Act passed in 2014 and already enforced by the health unit, Brockville may soon ban smoking in all its parks and athletic fields, going a step further than provincial law for the sake of simplicity.

The Smoke-Free Ontario Act prohibits smoking within 20 metres of children’s playgrounds and publicly-owned outdoor sporting areas effective January 1, 2015.

Ronald Zajac, Brockville Recorder and Times

Looking for parks in unexpected places

Added on Apr 22, 2015

Toronto likes to call itself “A city within a park” but as its population explodes, the park is getting relatively smaller and more crowded. Part of the solution is just to buy space for new parkland, but a new report from the charitable group Park People suggests another part of the solution is to open our thinking about what a park is, and look at in-between spaces — under expressways, in lanes, on school grounds, and even on sidewalks and streets — as public spaces ripe for what we might call parkification. 

Underpass Park is cited as an example, where dead space under a road was turned into a playground and basketball courts, connecting residents to the north, including those in social housing, to the Corktown Common anchor park farther south. 

Edward Keenan, Toronto Star

Renfrew, Greater Madawaska sign shared recreation services agreement

Added on Apr 20, 2015

Effective April 1, Greater Madawaska residents are permitted to participate in activities and programs and use all facilities, just as a resident of Renfrew can. The agreement includes support and assistance provided in planning, organizing and implementation of recreation services and programs. Renfrew recreation director Kevin Hill will join local officials to present the shared service model to delegates at the Eastern Ontario Economic Development Conference in Kingston in September.

Sherry Haaima, Renfrew Mercury

Kids missing out on summer camp fun because they lack basic skills

Added on Apr 17, 2015

Heather Heagle, executive director of the Ontario Camps Association, says many summer camp coordinators are changing the focus of camps to help build in physical literacy skills that kids aren’t picking up the rest of the year. 

“Those children are learning to be team players and leaders,” she says. “They’re learning about their own physicality and their own intellectual abilities to make decisions.” The problem is, she says, many lack the basic skills they need to take part in traditional camp activities.

Shelley Boettcher, Active for Life article

Toronto to pump $525,000 into improving signs in parks and trails

Added on Apr 14, 2015

The city of Toronto is investing $525,000 in a pilot project to overhaul signage in parks and trails, easing walking and cycling activities.

As more and more people take on active lifestyles, the city must address their needs by integrating the existing wayfinding systems to minimize repetition and clutter, and facilitate movements in the parks, said Janette Harvey, the city’s natural environment specialist.

Gilbert Ngabo, Metro News

Introducing Active Saskatchewan

Added on Apr 13, 2015

The Board of Directors of the Saskatchewan Parks and Recreation Association (SPRA) have approved a recommendation from the Saskatchewan in motion Strategic Development Council to establish a stand-alone organization responsible for the growth of physical activity initiatives in Saskatchewan, including Saskatchewan in motion.

Effective April 1, 2015, the operation of the in motion initiative has been transferred from SPRA to the newly incorporated organization, Active Saskatchewan. Active Saskatchewan will continue to focus on the sustainability, growth and stewardship of the in motion movement, however as a stand-alone organization, there is increased potential to expand its reach and operations.

Active Saskatchewan is currently governed by an interim Board of Directors composed of individuals that were members of the in motion Strategic Development Council. In accordance with provincial legislation, the Active Saskatchewan membership will elect a permanent Board of Directors at the organization's first annual meeting, which will take place March 2016. Moving forward Active Saskatchewan will work to build its membership base and look for opportunities to expand the funding available to support the physical activity movement in this province.

SPRA will continue to play an active role in Active Saskatchewan to ensure recreation and physical activity are a part of the plan to make Saskatchewan communities safe and engaging places to live.

SPRA News Release

Community Development Training and Certification - Training begins April 13

Added on Apr 13, 2015
Leaders at all levels, with or without the formal title, will need competencies based on new skills, frameworks, resources, and promising practices if they are to maximize opportunities for engaging citizens, collective impact, and community transformation.  As a social enterprise committed to supporting the development of strong, vibrant, and innovative communities, the Campus for Communities is addressing this unmet need with a training and certification opportunity this Spring: Community Development for Practitioners training and certification begins April 13th.
Facilitated by Principal Collaborator Brenda Herchmer, the focus is placed on applied learning and as such requires participation in live, interactive webinars (if you miss one we will make the recording available), peer to peer online learning, and the completion of practical assignments that require the application of the learnings within the participant's own community. 
If you need more information or have questions, please contact or call 780-788-8136

Enabling Accessibility in Communities Funding - Application deadline April 27, 2015

Added on Apr 13, 2015

The Community Accessibility Stream of the Enabling Accessibility Fund is designed to provide funding to eligible recipients for projects that improve accessibility in communities across Canada. Projects may include:

  • renovating, retrofitting or constructing community facilities where programs and/or services are offered to people with disabilities;
  • retrofitting motor vehicles used as community-based transportation; and,
  • providing information and communications technologies to make them more accessible for the community.

To be considered eligible for funding, projects must be directly related to removing barriers and increasing accessibility for people with disabilities in Canadian communities. All projects must also meet the specific eligibility criteria identified in the calls for proposals, including support from the community.

Deadline: April 27, 2015 at 11:59 p.m. EST

Harper Government provides support for accessible playground in Kelowna

Added on Apr 13, 2015

The federal government recently announced funding in the amount of $50,000 through the Enabling Accessibility Fund (EAF) to the City of Kelowna for its Ben Lee Park Playground Project. Through this funding, the City of Kelowna was able to undertake renovations to the Ben Lee playground to make it accessible to persons with disabilities.

There is currently an EAF call for proposals open, and eligible organizations are encouraged to apply for funding for projects that will help improve accessibility in community facilities across Canada. The deadline for submissions is April 27, 2015. Proposals can involve a wide variety of projects; however, priority will be given to projects that enhance access for children with disabilities (e.g. outdoor playgrounds), veterans with disabilities or seniors with disabilities.

CNW News