Rockford Park District Reaping Benefits Of Downtown Development

- Rockford- When Connie Norman is not smelling the flowers at the Nicholas Conservatory; she’s outside walking the bike path nearby.

She’s one of nearly ten million people that took part in recreational activities held by the Rockford Park District.

Norman says “this is a city that many of us have lived in for 50-60 years or more. And we’ve found it to be a great city and sometimes people say it’s not a great city, but we are definitely seeing the advantages of this city and the things that are available here.

The goal of last year was getting at risk youths involved in more activities. Deputy Director of Facilities of the Rockford Park District Jay Sundine says “to keep kids off the streets and reduce juvenile crime and keep kids busy and teach them teamwork and how to win, how to lose, and friendship.”

Last year also saw more people coming to downtown Rockford. An area the city continues developing. Sundine feels that expansion will help boost attendance more.

Officials say twenty percent of the ten million attendees came from outside the Rockford area. That money made from tourism stays in the Stateline.

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