Call for Presentations

The past three years have reaffirmed the importance of parks and greenspace to our physical and mental well-being. The healing power of parks, however, goes beyond our personal health. Public greenspaces are also where we build strong community bonds, experience diverse ideas, and grow more culturally rich.

We also look to parks to heal and strengthen the urban environment—to manage stormwater, reduce flooding, cool and filter the air, and provide natural habitat. The good news is that a healthy park system has the capacity to fulfill all these roles—creating resilient urban ecosystems while simultaneously offering the health benefits we all seek. In this way, parks can be thought of as part of a natural healthcare system, which ensures that cities and all a city’s inhabitants thrive long into the future.

At the 2023 Parks & Greenspace Conference, local and national thought leaders will come together to explore the healing power of parks.


Presentation Submission & Selection Process

Monday, November 21, 2022 by 5:00 pm

Each accepted presenters will receive complimentary registration to the 2023 Conference. Submission of a proposal represents an agreement to attend and present the proposed session if it is accepted. Any changes to speakers or content requires permission from Park Pride staff and may require reevaluation for acceptance.

Submissions are reviewed and selected by Park Pride staff. Submitters may be asked for clarification or to make changes to their session based on feedback from the selection process. Presentations should not have a commercial message for an organization or business, or be perceived as a “sales pitch.” Park Pride reserves the right to reject proposals. We evaluate proposals by the following criteria:

  • Appropriateness of the content to the conference theme and to one or more of the focus areas
  • Contribution to the body of knowledge on parks
  • Interest, applicability, innovation, and breadth of presentation appeal
  • Diversity of groups/organizations represented

For questions about the conference or your proposal submission, please contact Park Pride at

Session Format

Approximately 8-12 proposals will be accepted for the panel sessions, workshops, and outdoor presentations. Park Pride may request that similar or complimentary proposals be combined into panels for a more diverse dialogue.


Focus Areas

Panels, workshops/demonstrations, and outdoor presentations should focus on one or more of the following areas:

Parks + Health

Parks are critical to both our physical and mental well-being. Whether for those who seek respite from the demands of their daily lives or as an affordable alternative to crowded gyms, parks are vital to city life. What impacts do parks have on our lives, our health, the development of youth, and the quality of life for seniors? How can our shared greenspaces contribute to the health of all our residents?

  • Self-care and mental health
  • Physical fitness
  • Public health
  • Youth development
  • Senior programming

Parks + Ecological Health

Parks are a critical part of urban ecosystems. They collect water as part of the water cycle, provide shelter and nursery sites for wildlife, supply food sources across the food web, cool cities, trap pollutants, and supply health benefits for people too. What can we do to strengthen park ecosystems? What ecosystem services do parks provide to ease the impact of climate change and rapid population growth?

  • Climate change and urban resilience
  • Urban wildlife and habitat
  • Ecosystem services and their value

Parks + Social Healing

Parks are places for community conversations around reconciliation and restorative justice. The reexamination of history and inequitable park investments has raised questions about how we address persistent injustice. What role can parks play to increase awareness of our past, including the painful events and periods? How can parks facilitate deeper relationships between people and the land and support more resilient communities?

  • Healing historical and cultural divides
  • Connection to the land
  • Land acknowledgement
  • Places of democracy
  • Spiritual healing

A Healthy Park System

To meet a city’s needs, a park system must be considered in a larger context. Park systems must adapt to evolving needs generated by increasing population, changing housing patterns, and the infrastructure pressures these changes bring. How can park systems adapt to deliver the standard of care required for all residents? How can we create a robust, responsive, and resilient park system that demonstrates that ALL communities are valued?

  • Funding a healthy park system
  • Workforce development
  • Ensuring equity and access
  • Activating parks to build and strengthen community
  • Creating parks that welcome all



Submit to Present

Deadline: November 21, 2022 by 5 p.m.