San Francisco to Unveil 'Parks Portal' So You Can Post What's Going On In Your Local Park (Good Lord! You Don't Want to Know!)

Categories: Government
Looks like these folks didn't need a Web portal to know about the 4/20 goings on in Golden Gate Park...
For those of you who enjoyed your two-dollar Muni ride downtown today -- perhaps to protest during the Board of Supervisors budget and finance committee meeting , because, you know, you were free at 9 a.m. on a Wednesday -- you'll be pleased to learn there are still some services the city doesn't intend to monetize.

Sometime early next month, San Francisco will launch a "Parks Portal" Web site which is what it sounds like it is -- a city-run bulletin board in which organizations or individuals can post and peruse what's going on in the city's parks. One thing you may not be able to post, however, is an event such as a hemp smoke-a-thon and drum circle on Hippie Hill (incidentally, is this ever not taking place?) -- as events must first pass muster with a moderator. Event posters will be informed if they make the cut within one to three business days -- clearly this is not a bulletin board for last-minute party-throwers.   

Actually, this may not be much of a tool for Jill and Jim San Franciscan to simply gather people together for a volleyball game. While ostensibly aimed at recreation-seeking individuals, the FAQ section of the site veers into some language no individual who just wants to enjoy a day in the sun would think to use:

ParksPortal is specifically designed to provide organizations of all sizes a venue to publicize their events, recruit volunteers, and expand their fundraising and press exposure. Register your organization and have easy control of managing your events. Create a profile for your organization that everyone will see on each of your event listings. Have a sponsor for your organization, or for a specific event? As a registered organization, you can also include logos from sponsors on your listings using our sponsor banner feature. Your event is also automatically enrolled in ParksPress, a service that provides San Francisco press with notifications about park events.
and furthermore:

One of ParksPortal's most powerful features for organizations is the ability to highlight sponsors and leverage traffic to your events. For events listed by registered users, ParksPortal can assign a banner, image, or logo of your choice to your organization profile to appear on all your events, and also assign individual banners to a single event. This flexibility gives you the ability to highlight sponsors of particular events or an annual "season" sponsor. Supported by full metrics, ParksPortal tracks how many times your banners are viewed, and how many click-throughs you receive.
The portal is a joint project of the city's Recreation and Parks Department and the nonprofit San Francisco Parks Trust -- so it's unclear how much city money and time is tied up in the endeavor.

Our e-mails to Rec and Park haven't yet been returned. Think we should wait one to three business days?

UPDATE, 1:35 P.M.: Peter Tucker from the San Francisco Parks Trust says that no city money at all went into the development or upkeep of this Web page, which has been "in development for a while."

Rec and Parks will benefit, though: All of "their materials and offerings" will finally have a central address which the public can browse.

"Hopefully, when the site launches it'll be very user-friendly and be able to be utilized by anyone looking for something fun to do for free in Golden Gate Park over the weekend or any small organization that wants to host a workday at a local park," he said.

H/T   |

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