66TH ANNUAL PARKS EDUCATION FORUM
September 28th & September 29th, 2023 at the Four Points Sheraton in London.
OPA is thrilled to host our Annual Education Forum in the city of London. London and St. Thomas will co-host this event. This year’s forum will be a 2-day event.
Day 1: September 28: Registrants will join other Park professionals for a delicious breakfast at the Four Points Sheraton. After Breakfast the city of London and St. Thomas will host OPA registrants with tours of their beautiful city and facilities. After the tours, we will gather back at the Four Points by Sheraton for a roundtable discussion.
During the evening at 7:30 pm, OPA will welcome registrants to the Four Points by Sheraton for networking with your fellow parks workers, vendors and we will have live entertainment along with a bar and food. Entertainment and food are included with your ticket, however alcoholic beverages will be cash only.
Day 2: September 29: OPA will have our 4 speakers (to be announced) as well as Parks and Recreation related vendors. Time will be set aside to visit with the vendors. There will be raffles for great prizes and breakfast and lunch are included with your ticket.
Tickets are offered as follows:
LATE BIRD RATES (REGISTERED ON OR AFTER JUNE 2, 2023)
OPA MEMBERS: 2 DAY EVENT: $550.00
OPA MEMBERS: 1 DAY EVENT: $300.00
OPA MEMBERS: EVENING NETWORKING EVENT ONLY: $80.00
POTENTIAL MEMBERS: 2 DAY EVENT: $600.00
POTENTIAL MEMBERS: 1 DAY EVENT: $325.00
POTENTIAL MEMBERS: EVENING NETWORKING EVENT: $90.00
REGISTRATION WILL CLOSE September 1st, 2023
Vendor Registration Registration will open shortly
Vendor "Table Top Displays"
OPA is offering a limited number of exhibitor spots to maximize the opportunity for our committed vendors to increase your exposure and engage with our members.
Why Exhibit in 2023?
Education Session Sponsor (5 opportunities available)
Promote your company while supporting our parks education sessions and your Ontario Parks Association. As an Education Session Sponsor, your sponsorship includes exclusive sponsorship of one virtual session. You will have a sponsor page on the event portal website, your logo on the event website, on the OPA website and in the Green Sward magazine. In addition, OPA will send an email to attendees post-event containing a thank you to our sponsors which will include your logo linked to your website, along with a few words describing the product or service your offer.
PRESENTERS FOR THE 2023 PARKS EDUCATION FORUM
We are excited to have the following speakers:
1. Topic: Horticulture for Health: Public Space as Healing Space
Green spaces are a vital component in the ecosystem of sustainable and liveable cities. Parks, gardens, and conservation areas have aesthetic, health, and social benefits, and they improve the quality of life in an increasingly urbanized society. Studies on the use of urban parks, conversation areas, and gardens have confirmed the reduction of stress and other mental health benefits. In this presentation, we will explore the growing body of evidence that supports the value of green spaces for health, and how passive and active engagement with plants and green spaces can inspire ways that staff and the public can protect tomorrow, today.
Presenter Bio: Guinevere Kern is a Horticultural Therapy Practitioner, Educator, and Speaker who is passionate about facilitating physical and emotional movement to encourage curiosity, find nourishment, and build hope. Her current roles include working at a specialized addictions and mental health treatment facility as a Horticultural Therapy Practitioner, teaching with Landscape Ontario as a Horticulture Technical Instructor, and advocating for the professional development of Horticultural Therapy as a viable therapeutic modality.
Guinevere is an active member of the Canadian Horticultural Therapy Association (CHTA), American Horticultural Therapy Association (AHTA), and sits on the CHTA Education Committee. She brings a transdisciplinary approach to health and wellness that invites us to cultivate the precious interconnected relationship between plants, the broader environment, ourselves, and one another.
2. Topic: Psychological Safety
In our effort to protect tomorrow today, we need to take care of the most important asset – our people. Psychological safety is necessary for high performing teams, as it helps build a culture of trust, collaboration, and common purpose. Since every member of the OPA brings unique talents and skills to their work, we will explore how to create a culture of inclusion and learning, where people feel safe to share their unique ideas and work creatively together. In this session, you will learn what psychological safety is, the importance of authenticity and interpersonal relationships, and how to become a psychologically safe leader. The session will also include experiential exercises to allow for integration and practical application of learned material.
Presenter Bio: Milena Braticevic, PhD -Milena holds a PhD in Integral Health from the California Institute for Human Science. She teaches her program “Mental Resilience and Psychological Safety” at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies. Milena has delivered her programs to many organizations, including Price Waterhouse Coopers, First Capital, American Industrial Hygiene Association, Workplace Safety and Prevention Services, and the Ontario Association of Social Workers. Milena’s mental health programs have helped individuals at various organizations and educational institutions build resilient minds and reduce the prevalence of common mental disorders and stigma. For more information visit www.nondualperspectives.com
3. Topic: Design Responses to Evolving Needs in Parks
Doug Fountain is an Ontario-based Landscape Architect who has been designing new parks and park improvement projects for nearly 30 years and finds it far too rewarding to stop anytime soon. Doug will share how he feels the public’s perceived value of parks continues to evolve in response to demographic and lifestyle changes, the housing shortage and…oh yeah, a pandemic. Real-world examples of how good design can effectively respond to our changing needs will be explored to help answer the question: “Are we protecting tomorrow today?”
Presenter Bio: Doug Fountain, OALA, AAPQ, CSLA, ASLA - Doug Fountain is a Landscape Architect and a Principal at Fotenn Planning + Design. Doug’s nearly 30-year career began in a municipal setting, which gave him a solid foundation in recreation planning and park design. He since transferred these skills into private practice and has had the privilege to work with municipalities, community groups and sports clubs to design hundreds of new parks, park retrofits, improvements, and trails.
More presenter information to follow