An image of volunteers passing out tickets at an event

With your volunteer help, we can really make a difference in our efforts to preserve, protect and promote our waterfront parks. Below are short descriptions of some of the committees that need volunteers. Please consider joining one or more of them so together we can work with the City to make our waterfront parklands the best they can be! 

Committee Members Wanted

The following are the committees that should be filled and a brief description of their purpose: (Each committee should have at least one Board member participating)

Land Use & Zoning

This committee covers how parks are described, what can happen within them, and directives on preservation. In addition, this committee will review the utilities within the parks and their location and appearance. 

1. Land Use and Zoning Modifications

Coordinate and review revisions to the land use and zoning for the Downtown Waterfront Parks prepared by our attorneys Carlton Fields. (members who should have some understanding of municipal codes and zoning).

2. Electrical, Water and Other Utility Structures

This important committee will address one of the primary concerns of the Foundation; the visual clutter caused by these facilities within the park system. Some of these facilities are unnecessary or have been abandoned by the utility companies or agencies. This will require committee members to meet with and the heads of the City Parks and Water Departments and Duke Energy representatives to review the viability, location and size of their related facilities. There are other utilities that are within the parks that need review, as well, such as phone, gas, fiber optics and cable. The committee should have at least four members, one of which should be familiar with power distribution. 

Special Projects

The Foundation, from time to time, will initiate or participate in various projects in which volunteers can assist. These projects would advance as subcommittees for each area of interest. Ideas/suggestions for these projects include: 

1. Benches & Receptacles

There are currently 350+ benches within the waterfront park system. Most of which are mildewed and in need of refurbishment or replacement. We are looking into the refurbishment of the benches. These refurbishments consisting of sandblasting and repainting the ends and installing new composite (not wood) slats that are mildew proof. Committee members will work with the City Parks Department to research sustainable materials and methods for refurbishment of the 350+ benches in need of improvement. They would provide information for a design to use as a new standard park bench. The City Parks Department is currently developing a map of all the waterfront park bench and receptacle locations for use by this committee for review of the appropriate placement of benches and receptacles. Two to three members are welcome.

2. Signage

This committee would be involved in the design and selection of regulatory, informational and identification signage standards for the parks. The current signage is a collection of mismatched styles, shapes and colors. The Foundation feels the signage in the parks should be redone. We feel the need to provide a uniform and consistent appearance with the new Pier as part of the waterfront park system.  The committee for this task would work with the City Parks Department. They’d provide a list of the signs required. Further, they would coordinate conceptual design and location with the contractor doing the Pier signage. They’ll select appropriate family of signage from the concepts and request pricing. They’d work with the City Staff for approvals and implementation. Three to four members are needed.

3. Floral Planting

A generous donor has come forward to pay for floral enhancements to selected areas of the waterfront park system. The donor is providing funds to provide high visibility floral planting three times a year for three years. There will be two phases to this action. Phase one will be an installation at Beach Drive and 4th Avenue N.E. and at the apex of Northshore Dr. and Coffee Pot Blvd. on the north end of the Downtown Waterfront Parks. We will be looking at the north end of the Spa Beach Park and the southern tip of Vinoy Park. These installations will create floral gateways for those arriving via 4th Avenue in automobiles and those arriving by boat through the entrance to the Vinoy Basin.

The committee would require two to four volunteers. Additional volunteers may be needed for planting of flowers. Members of the Projects Committee would contacted by the City Parks Department for assistance, if needed.

4. Swing

We have developed a prototype swing to be erected in a select location in the waterfront parks. The swing structure will be of rectangular tubular steel and is currently in the final stages of design. Bill Reidy, P.E., a civil and structural engineer, has offered to provide the engineering specifications for the swing. After the plans are complete it will be possible to get an accurate price for fabrication and installation. We will then get approval of the donor and the City Parks Department for the swing and its location. This committee is currently comprised of Phil Graham, J.P. Fatseas and Don Howe. This should be sufficient to complete the project, but one or two additional community members would help in providing input and coordination with the City.

5. Lighting

The City has recently removed the Tivoli lights in the trees within the Straub parks and has replaced them with up-lights within the tree canopies. They have focused on the Straub Parks, but there are many other areas within the waterfront parks that should be accented at night, including the primary park signs. The Museum of Fine Arts is installing up-lighting on the grand Kapok tree on their property. This committee would also look at the current light type, coverage and location of light poles within the parks. A donor has shown interest in helping with the expansion of the night lighting of our parks. This committee should have four to five members.

6. Maintenance

This committee would be responsible for bringing to attention areas or elements of disrepair, degradation, or otherwise in need of maintenance within our waterfront parks. The committee would work closely with the Parks Department to assist in maintaining the parks to the expected high level of care.

Special Events

Our annual fundraising event and participation in festivals and other civic occurrences would come under this committee: 

1. Champagne Shuffle – Coordinates the annual event at the Shuffleboard Center. The event is currently made up of Don Howe, Bill Dahl, Therese Johnson, Tami Simms, Colleen Crutchfield, Phil Graham, Logan De Vicente and volunteer Rob Johnson. This committee could use some volunteer support from the community.

2. Special Event/Civic Participation – Various community festivals and events such as the Green Thumb Festival, Wine & Food Festival, Earth Day, etc. that the Foundation decides to participate in will require volunteers for each of these endeavors. Activities might include staffing tables, collecting names/emails of interested visitors, passing out literature, etc. Two to five members are welcome.

Marketing & Community Outreach

This committee coordinates promotional materials and methods for the Foundation. Examples include our website, social media, branding, and interaction with the community and City Staff/Council. Its membership consists of Bill Dahl, JP Fatseas, Phil Graham, and is attended by our communication consultant, Frank Ranieri. More members (1-4) from the Board and/or community would help to in facilitating the many tasks of the committee.  There are two additional important tasks under this committee:

1. Advocacy – This committee’s role is at the heart of our mission to preserve, protect and promote the Downtown Waterfront Parks. Members of this committee will assist in the preservation, maintenance and appropriate enhancements of the waterfront park system. Responsibilities include supporting the Foundation’s advocacy of the parks, promoting our Mission throughout the community, and building a lasting working relationship with the City Administration, City Staff and City Council members. The future of how the Waterfront Parks will be maintained, the green open space is preserved, the appropriateness of future development, and the adequacy of park budgetary funds will be the goals of this committee.

2. Speakers Team – This would involve members to speak to residential, business, community and other interested groups. The Speaker Team would be tasked to make a presentation on the Mission of the Waterfront Parks Foundation to build and understanding of our purpose. They will encourage volunteers, provide opportunities for fundraising and build support for the preservation of our waterfront park system.

Please consider the committee(s) in which you would like to participate and complete the form below. We also encourage you to share this information with your family, friends and associates and invite them to participate with you. 

Thank You, 

Logan DeVicente
Waterfront Parks Foundation