In an effort to make it clear that parks in the Preservation Parks of Delaware County system are open to the public, the park district will change the names of its properties to contain the word “park” rather than “preserve,” park district officials say.
The change, which will affect seven parks in the district, will be phased in during 2016, with changes being made gradually to the park district website, signs, maps, and printed and other materials.
“While members of the public understand the organization name, Preservation Parks, and feel it aligns with our mission, there has been confusion about the purpose of the parks,” said district spokeswoman Sue Hagan. “We have heard over the years that people drive right by the park signs, assuming the park is off-limits because of the word ‘preserve’ in the name.”
There are more than 100 designated state nature preserves and protected natural areas in Ohio, many of which require advance reservations before a visit, Hagan said.
“The parks have been confused with these nature preserves in the past, and we want to make sure that people feel they can drive right in and enjoy the park,” she said.
She added that the core part of each park’s name will not change. “So, for example, Shale Hollow Preserve is being renamed Shale Hollow Park,” she said.
Preservation Parks is the natural areas park system for Delaware County. It endeavors to protect and conserve the county’s natural, scenic, historic and archaeological features and to provide recreational opportunities and outdoor education to the public, Hagan explained.
Parks are open from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily in the winter, and from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. from March through October.
More information about the parks, trails and programs can be found at www.preservationparks.com.