Put fun on your bucket list this summer with Oakland parks

By: Tiffany Esshaki | C&G Newspapers | Published July 15, 2015

A bucket list is typically defined as a list of experiences or goals one hopes to accomplish in their lifetime.

Oakland County Parks and Recreation is scaling that theme down a bit with its new bucket list: a number of activities that county residents should take advantage of outside at local parks before the warmth of summer falls away.

The list posted on www.destinationoakland.com, the county’s parks and rec website, is packed full of ideas to get people outside and make the most out of their summer. From picnics to disc golf outings to 180-foot inflatable waterslide adventures, there are 30 activities to partake in.

The list is one way the county parks and rec department is celebrating national Park and Recreation Month throughout July.

“Oakland County Parks contributes to a high quality of life that attracts residents and businesses to our communities,” Oakland County Parks and Recreation Executive Officer Dan Stencil said in a prepared statement. “We are proud of our parks’ ability to preserve land and create recreational opportunities for residents.”

The National Recreation and Park Association, which works to promote parks and rec opportunities in each community, celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. They’re hoping to garner some attention to the special occasion and Park and Recreation Month by encouraging park-goers to capture their experiences on Twitter with #JulyPRM30.

Locally, Destination Oakland is encouraging its visitors to do the same with #MyOCPadventure on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

“We’ve started to get a good response,” said Oakland County Parks and Recreation Manager Sue Wells. “It was slow at first, I think because of the holiday, but it’s starting to gain some speed, which is exciting.”

Wells said that while new attractions like fat tire biking and footgolf seem to be among the favorite activities shared, she hopes residents will take advantage of the list and sample everything the program has to offer.

As visitors cross items off their bucket list, park staff hopes they’ll share their experiences on social media. While they’re at it, if guests come across a perfect photo op while at play, they’re encouraged to submit their shot to the annual Destination Oakland photo contest, which runs through Sept. 7.

Photos must be taken within the county’s 13 parks, but there’s no limit on the number of submissions, which can be in categories under the themes of parks, action, recreation, kids and selfies.

To enter a photo, make sure it’s a minimum of 2 megabytes to ensure quality, and send it via inbox message to Oakland County Parks and Recreation’s Facebook page. The top submissions will be displayed this fall at Somerset Collection in Troy.

For more information on the Park and Recreation Month bucket list or the photo contest, visit www.destinationoakland.com or visit Oakland County Parks and Recreation’s Facebook page.