December 2023 - Parks & Recreation - 55

Park Bench
Balancing elements
invite children to use
their vestibular system
to balance and gain
awareness of their own
body while assisting in the
development of head and
body posture.
Pearland Parks and Recreation Hits a
Home Run for Adaptive, Inclusive Play
Although Pearland (Texas) Parks and Recreation has offered adaptive recreation for nearly 15 years - and department operations
include a Diversity, Equity and Inclusivity Task Force - the agency recognizes a commitment to inclusivity means remaining relevant
as community needs change. During the past two years, the city completed construction on two major projects to further meet
those needs, Pearland's Miracle League Field and the Ed Thompson Inclusive Park.
Pearland's Miracle League Field opened in spring 2022 as part of the second-phase project completion of the Sports Complex at
Shadow Creek Ranch. Among other community stakeholders, the department's Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist, Araceli
Bravo, provided input on project design and was instrumental throughout the project.
Carry Capers, director of parks and recreation, shares, " We wanted full representation at the design table to ensure the project
was going to meet the needs of the people who would be using the fields - we want to eliminate barriers, not create more of them. "
The specialized rubber turf field is accompanied by an adaptive training facility, accessible locker rooms and concessions. Innovative
use of space and creative design places the Miracle League Field within the existing sports complex to play alongside softball,
baseball, cricket, rugby, soccer and football leagues.
Offering two seasons per year, the Miracle League program fills quickly with more than 80 players each season. Pearland Miracle
League utilizes " Buddies, " volunteer companions assigned to each player throughout the game. Buddies and other league volunteers
collectively serve approximately 1,800 hours each season.
All accommodations are planned and executed carefully to meet each player's individual needs. Players are outfitted with adaptive
uniforms and customized equipment suitable for all abilities. Of all the personal touches created by Bravo, there is no greater crowd
favorite than each player's intro music playing when they exit the dugout and arrive to bat!
The city recently celebrated the grand opening of the Ed Thompson Inclusive Park, directly adjacent to the Miracle League Field,
in April 2023. The inclusive playground was made possible through the city's partnership with the Forever Parks Foundation of
Pearland and Inclusion Matters by Shane's Inspiration. Banded with the purpose of inclusive recreational play for all ages and abilities
to enjoy together, $1.3 million was raised to bring this project to life.
More than a playground, it is a programmable space that allows for ongoing recreation programming and community partnerships,
such as the " Together, We Are AbleĀ®
" Inclusive Play curriculum piloted by the local school districts this summer.
Although the city, Pearland Parks and Recreation, the Forever Parks Foundation of Pearland and countless advocates are pleased
with the successful projects, the work is not done. These are merely the " firsts " in inclusive play enhancements. To connect with
Pearland Parks and Recreation or learn more about these initiatives, visit pearlandparks.com.
- Monica Montoya-Phelps, Parks and Recreation Services Administrator, Pearland (Texas) Parks and Recreation
56 Parks & Recreation | DECEMBER 2 0 2 3
| PARK S ANDRECRE AT ION . OR G
PHOTO COURTESY OF LANDSCAPE STRUCTURES, INC.
http://www.pearlandparks.com

December 2023 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of December 2023 - Parks & Recreation

December 2023 - Parks & Recreation - 1
December 2023 - Parks & Recreation - Intro
December 2023 - Parks & Recreation - Cover1
December 2023 - Parks & Recreation - Cover2
December 2023 - Parks & Recreation - 1
December 2023 - Parks & Recreation - 2
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December 2023 - Parks & Recreation - Cover3
December 2023 - Parks & Recreation - Cover4
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2024
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2024
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2024
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2024
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2023
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2021
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
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2021
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