Public encouraged to vote for Sarasota County in nationwide parks competition

$20,000 national grant at stake in competition that begins April 1

The website of the National Recreation and Park Association notes the organization’s mission. Image from the website

The Sarasota County Parks, Recreation and Natural Resources Department is taking part in the Meet Me at the Park initiative, a national competition that could earn Sarasota County a $20,000 grant to improve local parks, the county has announced.

The contest, which is sponsored by the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), provides communities across the country the chance to win the grant by encouraging members of the public to vote for their particular jurisdiction, a news release explains. The community with the most nominations will earn the grant, which can be used “to connect youth to nature, increase youth’s access to sports” or inspire healthful living, the release points out.

“Parks are the cornerstone of nearly every community, and the same is true for Sarasota County,” said Carolyn Brown, director of the county’s parks department “One of our organizational goals is to be a premier community [in which] to live, work and play, and parks are a key component of that goal,” she added in the release.

The voting period will open April 1 and run through the end of the month, the release notes. The winning community will have a choice of which park or program in its system to improve through use of the $20,000 grant, the release explains.

To vote for Sarasota County Parks, visit To learn more about Sarasota County’s parks, beaches, natural areas and other amenities, call the Sarasota County Contact Center at 861-5000, or visit