Northwest Park and Recreation District 2 hired Erin Anderson as its new director earlier this month. A self-described “true-blue local,” Anderson grew up in Whatcom County and earned a bachelor of arts degree in recreation from Western Washington University before launching her career.
Anderson brings over ten years of experience to the table from previous positions with Bellingham Parks and Recreation, where she served as an instructor and program coordinator.
So far she’s hit the ground running by collaborating with other organizations to bring more playground space to local parks.
“We are working with Whatcom County Parks to get a playground installed in Bay Horizon Park and with Washington State Parks to install another playground at Birch Bay State Park. It would be fantastic to see both of
these projects finished within the year," Anderson said.
In addition to the playground, Anderson hopes to see other improvements to Bay Horizon Park, including improving the gym for use as athletic and program space.
“We would really like to see Bay Horizon Park taken to its full potential,” Anderson said.
Anderson cites a lack of program space as one of the district’s greatest challenges.
“You can’t run summer camps, concerts, environmental programs or fun community events without facilities. We rely heavily on other organizations that do have some space to work cooperatively with us to provide programs and classes. It would be great to have a central, accessible, and inviting place to utilize as a district,” Anderson said.
She also hopes to increase the scope of programming in the district and appeal to more area residents.
“As most of my background is in programming, I’d like to see year-round recreation program offerings for the entire community, but especially youth, in the next year,” Anderson said.
Other goals Anderson hopes to meet include increasing the number of trails in the district, and collaborating to acquire and develop more land as park space. She also hopes to move the district toward greater fiscal sustainability, relying less on taxpayer dollars and more on donations, grants, and program revenue.
Anderson said the district is always looking for volunteers, people with something to teach, and people great at working with children.
For more information, visit www.nwparkandrec.org
or call 360-656-6416.