Brand-Aid Recognized in Metroplex
By Office of Communication
Posted on August 11, 2012, August 11, 2012

The 2012 Innovation in Programming Award was presented on July 13 to the Arlington and Grand Prairie Parks and Recreation Departments in recognition of the 2011 Brand-Aid Marketing and Promotions Conference.

Brand-Aid was conceived to address the problems associated with decreasing parks and recreation funding at a time when an increase in childhood obesity and Nature Deficit Disorder (the lack of a relationship to the environment) are forcing families to rely on their municipalities for safe, fun and active opportunities for play. The departments partnered to plan a conference focusing on marketing, promotions and cost recovery for the parks and recreation industry. Staffs from both organizations worked together to plan and hold a conference that attracted national talent providing training on social media, cost recovery and target audiences and more.

Supported by The Texas Recreation & Park Society (TRAPS) and the Texas Amateur Athletic Federation (TAAF), the two-day conference at the Ruthe Jackson Center in Grand Prairie included expert speakers such as Dr. John Crompton, Distinguished Professor at Texas A&M and Mike Veeck, President and Co-owner of the St. Paul Saints. Conference attendees were provided new, exciting and innovative strategies for developing programs designed to not only serve a community, but engage it.

The goal of Brand-Aid was to not only unite Parks and Recreation business professionals in a venue for exchanging strategies and ideas to promote the recreational industry, but also to present unique concepts in out-of-the-box marketing strategies and provide ideas for exciting new business initiatives. Speakers engaged the audience by providing valuable information, entertaining narratives of past experience and a vision for the future of the recreational industry. Geared towards smart and exciting marketing initiatives, the Conference addressed the need to re-imagine old and repetitive programs by turning them into beneficial community collaborations with an emphasis on financially sustainable programs that address community needs.

"With the business philosophy of our department focused on cost recovery it made sense to develop a training opportunity in which a large number of our staff could attend at an affordable fee. The more knowledge our staff has regarding marketing and promotions, the better we will be able to promote our programs and services will be for the city and residents of Arlington." said Gary Packan, Assistant Director, Arlington Parks and Recreation and conference committee member.

In the first year of the event, 300 professionals and students participated in the conference. Planning for the 2013 has already started and staff from both organizations are looking forward to Brand-Aid II. For more information on the 2013 conference, go to or


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