April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 13

gets of hilarious, yet poignant, messages
meant to bolster " Carnival of
Ruin's " mission and prime the community
for the upcoming live performance
debut. A neat ripple effect of
the PSAs was these messages could
live outside the " Carnival of Ruin "
ticketed audience and be seen online
by the public at their leisure, with the
number of views reaching 6,870.
The Debut
The cast rehearsed in preparation for
a May 2020 debut but postponed until
summer 2021, as the coronavirus
(COVID-19) pandemic put a hold
on public events. It was heartwarming
to see the entire cast, crew and
community remain interested and
engaged in the " Carnival of Ruin "
through a nearly 14-month pause.
Spring
2021
brought warmer
weather and hopes that the show
would go on. " Carnival of Ruin "
leadership held an exhibit and big
top reveal on campus, with timed
public access and a brilliant table
read live-streamed on social media
that gave the public a taste of the
performance to come.
But the " Carnival of Ruin " leadership
had one final question to answer:
How would they know if the
play made inroads into changing behavior?
The West Chester University
Statistics Department was enlisted
to create a statistically valid survey
about pre- and post- " Carnival of
Ruin " event attitudes and behaviors.
Utilizing the six public service announcements
as a jumping off point,
all ticketed guests were asked in April,
and then again in mid-June, a series
of sustainability-focused questions.
The morning of the premiere
came and a truckload of empty
milk jugs, recycled plastics support
beams, reused plastic film and gorgeous
costumes made its way to East
Goshen Township Park. During the
two performances, the audience
laughed at Charlie's buffoonery and
marveled at the exquisite costuming.
The show reached its crescendo
as Charlie realized that living a
sustainable life is an achievable and
worthwhile goal. The entire cast
were met with loud applause as they
took their final bows.
But the " Carnival of Ruin " was
created as an intimate, hands-on
experience, and so, this was just the
beginning of the performance. Show
organizers invited the audience backstage
to see the costumes, stage and
big top up close. The star of the play,
Virginia, sat for countless pictures
with children who could not believe
she had a tail made from recycled
ginger ale and soda cans. Kids could
climb on the stage and crunch, crumble
and poke the actors' costumes.
Grown men looked for their favorite
beer bottle top in Charlie's topcoat
and everyone marveled at the elegant
beauty of the tight rope walker's
colorful train. But equally impressive
was the big top. Over the course of
that past 18 months, the community
made the deliberate and conscious
choice to bring in single-use plastic
bags that otherwise would have
ended up in the local county landfill.
That collective community effort, in
the form of a carnival big top, sat on
a hilltop at the park's highest point,
proudly championing the hard work
of all those involved with the " Carnival
of Ruin. "
Calculating Impact
Once the show had come full circle,
" Carnival of Ruin " leadership and
park and recreation department
staff were still left with that final
question: Had they changed public
attitudes toward sustainability?
Survey conclusions were encouraging.
These included:
* Eighty-two percent of the audience
thought the show was very
or extremely effective in conveying
its message that when you
throw something away, it truly
doesn't go away.
* Eighty-eight percent pledged to
not use single-use plastic bags.
* Ninety-four percent pledged to
reuse single-use plastic bags.
* Eighty-eight percent pledged to
talk to family and friends about
sustainability.
Studlien-Webb, Case and urrutia
created a mesmerizing theater
performance that was entertaining,
thought
provoking, compelling
and, most importantly, inspiring
people to take action. We can draw
some really wonderful conclusions
when we look back at the " Carnival
of Ruin " experience through a
municipal park and recreation lens.
Sustainability is a worthy goal, and
something that park and recreation
departments can help communities
tackle as a whole. Our bread
and butter come from offering
outdoor programming in public
spaces, such as waterways, greenways
and on mountainsides, that
all need our attention. Water and
air quality, energy usage and repurposing
of expended goods can
be something we address through
park and recreation experiences.
Be creative! Have a simple goal and
craft a message that your public
can get behind. As the fortuneteller
told Charlie, " This can be a beautiful
place, and your environment is
only as kind as you keep it. "
Jason Lang, MS, CPRE, is Director of Parks and
Recreation at East Goshen Township Parks and
Recreation (jlang@eastgoshen.org).
PARK S ANDRECRE AT ION . OR G | APRIL 2 0 22 | Parks & Recreation
13

April 2022 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of April 2022 - Parks & Recreation

April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Intro
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Cover1
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Cover2
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 1
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 2
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 3
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 4
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 5
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 6
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 7
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 8
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 9
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 10
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 11
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 12
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 13
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 14
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 15
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 16
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 17
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 18
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 19
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 20
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 21
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 22
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 23
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 24
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 25
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 26
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 27
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 28
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 29
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 30
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 31
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 32
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 33
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 34
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 35
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 36
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 37
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 38
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 39
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 40
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 41
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 42
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 43
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 44
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 45
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 46
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 47
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 48
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 49
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 50
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 51
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 52
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 53
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 54
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 55
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 56
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Cover3
April 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Cover4
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2022
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https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2021
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