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NCPRD 2021–2022 
YEAR IN REVIEW

Many happy returns

NCPRD’s staff and volunteers worked nimbly and diligently throughout the past year to return our programs and services to near pre-pandemic levels. We have been deeply inspired by the resilience of our community, an inspiration that makes us feel more committed than ever to our important role promoting healthy living through nature, parks, recreation, and connection.
 

Parks, Trails &
Natural Areas

Our team protects greenspaces as though our collective well-being depends on it—because it does. Parks and natural areas are not only essential to wildlife, but they also provide free recreational opportunities and connections to nature for all community members. As we do every year, our team remained dedicated throughout the 2021–2022 fiscal year to provide clean and safe parks and healthy and thriving natural areas for all residents to enjoy. The results of our efforts are evident in the freshly mowed grass, thriving native plants, and graffiti-free surfaces throughout all of our parks and natural areas.

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Parks & Trails

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Dragonfly and Damselfly Research

Our natural areas staff conducted a second year of dragonfly monitoring at the Boardman Wetlands Nature Park. Important to the ecological function of streams and wetlands, dragonflies and damselflies belong to the order Odonata, which means “toothed one” in Greek and refers to the dragonfly’s serrated teeth. These creatures provide important information to ecologists about habitat type and quality, serving as excellent subjects for studying the long-term impacts of climate change, along with the positive impacts of restoration and enhancement.
 

NCPRD partnered with Johnson Creek Watershed Council to conduct eight dragonfly and damselfly surveys. During that time, our natural areas staff observed 17 distinct Odonata species, including the Striped Meadowhawk, which had never before been seen at that site. We thank local expert Steve Berliner and all of our volunteers for their tremendous enthusiasm and support.

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North Clackamas
Aquatic Park

Thanks to hard work and careful planning, the team at North Clackamas Aquatic Park made sure that all residents had the opportunity to return to the pools. These efforts included modifying capacity limits for safety and partnering with North Clackamas School District (NCSD) to offer free swim programs to underserved families. We’re particularly proud that despite shifting COVID guidelines, we avoided even a single day of canceled operations all year long. Now that we’re offering the full range of programs, including swim lessons, aquatic exercise, and recreational swim times, we have been able to train and hire more than 50 new lifeguards.

Aquatic Park

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“This is a great place to take kids for an afternoon of fun. The slides are thrilling, the wave pool is exciting, and the float tubes are free!”
—NCPRD participant

Rec & Sports

Recreation
& Sports

NCPRD welcomed back residents of all ages and abilities with a variety of fitness, enrichment and sports opportunities designed to promote healthy and active lifestyles, including dance, art, fitness and wellness programs. Our team knows how important it is for our community to stay active and healthy, so we couldn’t be happier to resume our recreation and sports programs across virtual and in-person venues to help make them as inclusive as possible.

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“It was so good to play basketball again after not playing the prior year. I know it wasn't easy at the start with the COVID surge in January, but I appreciate how NCPRD worked through it to allow us to play the season.”
—NCPRD participant

Older Adult Services
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Older Adult Services

After much anticipation and preparation, the Milwaukie Community Center reopened its doors to welcome back staff, volunteers, patrons and friends. It was a gradual transition back to normal, with virtual technology and Zoom classes helping us bridge the gaps, but eventually, the Center was buzzing with activity once more. We saw the return of fitness and enrichment programs, drop-in activity groups, and essential social services. The transportation program began offering bus rides again, helping older adults and those with disabilities remain connected to the community. And through it all, the Meals on Wheels program made sure that vulnerable homebound members received nutritious meals and friendly visits.

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"Your Meals onWheels program delivers to my mother and brother in Milwaukie and it has been a lifesaver. On behalf of my family and many others that you help – thank you very much!"
—Family of Meals on Wheels Client

Milwaukie Community Center Naming
To better represent its purpose and commitment to serving all residents of our community, the Milwaukie Center is now known as the Milwaukie Community Center. This new name helps us further our mission of offering an inclusive, welcoming and vibrant space for all community members. To celebrate the occasion, the Board of County Commissioners, NCPRD staff and our partners gathered for a sign unveiling ceremony in November 2021. The event also recognized name changes to the Center’s two volunteer boards: the Milwaukie Community Center Advisory Board and the Milwaukie Community Center Foundation.

Volunteers

Volunteers

We are so very thankful to all of our volunteers for their continued support during a transitional year. Our community of volunteers never wavered in their support when we needed it most, and for them we are more grateful than ever. Without our volunteers, we would not be so far along in rebuilding so many programs and services on which our community depends, including Meals on Wheels, park and natural area enhancement, and sports programming.

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Special Events

NCPRD events strengthen our community by bringing people together and fostering connections to art, culture, nature and each other. Throughout the year, we remained dedicated to providing free and affordable community events to give our residents a chance to get outside and have fun. At our family-friendly events, offerings like the grab-and-go kits, drive-thru celebrations and virtual event programming remained as popular as ever. Movies returned to the parks, and we also provided the opportunity for residents to safely enjoy nostalgic nights out at drive-in movies. Additional highlights include the Oregon Ballet Theater 2 (OBT2) once again enchanting audiences with a special dance performance, families taking a deeper look at the world around them at Science in the Park, and Laughter Yoga providing a joyful release on World Laughter Day.

Special Events

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“We loved it! You all did such an amazing job and it was great family fun! Thank you so much!”
NCPRD Resident