2003 - 2011 Progress Report
The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission has identified 11 goals for Centennial 2013.
This report shows progress toward those 11 goals.
The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission adopted the Centennial 2013 Plan to prepare the
park system for a second century of service and a 100-year celebration in 2013. The Plan's three
priorities – fix what we have; upgrade existing parks, trails and services; and build new parks and
trails for the future – are reflected in 11 goals The Commission adopted for completion by 2013.
This annual report shows cumulative progress on these goals through December 2011.
Following are archived progress reports.
Goal No. 1 – Stewardship
93 state parks will have land-use plans supported by the public and commission . . .so that citizens
can participate in park planning and understand and support the care of their parks and environment.
Progress: 81 of 93 state parks had land-use plans supported by the public and Commission at the end of 2011.
Public helps with park plans: This planning meeting for Lake Sammamish State
Park is one example of the public planning process State Parks uses to identify land uses and
develop classification and management plans for all parks. The inclusive process builds public interest
and encourages participation. The resulting plans help park managers provide appropriate public recreation while caring
for natural and cultural resources. To comment on park planning processes under way or to view
completed plans and public comment, visit www.parks.wa.gov/plans/.
Goal No. 2 – Enjoyment, health and learning
All state parks will have community events and interpretive programs . . . so that citizens
understand that parks are places to enjoy healthy recreation and learn about Washington's history
and cultural heritage.
Progress: 56 state parks had both community events and interpretive programs in 2011.
Fun and education: Programs such as State Parks' Folk and Traditional Arts in the Parks,
in partnership with the Washington State Arts Commission, the National Endowment for the Arts and the
Washington State Parks Foundation, offer visitors a diverse array of exciting cultural programs. Park staff
work hard to provide visitors a sense of discovery and environmental education, through interesting campfire
programs and nature walks. In 2011, State Parks staff presented more than 61,225 interpretive programs with
an estimated 396,225 people in attendance.
Goal No. 3 – Public service
The public will rate agency public service "B" or better on surveys . . . so that the
Commission can guage citizen confidence in the management of the park system and help to assure
- In a 2008 Responsive Management scientific survey, 1,200 respondents gave
Washington State Parks an overall rating of "B+" or better on questions relating to satisfaction
and quality of services and facilities in their state parks. (2008 Survey.pdf - 686kb PDF)
- 2009: The Commission deferred conducting the 2009 survey due to budget restrictions.
- 2010: The Commission deferred conducting the 2010 survey due to budget restrictions.
- 2011: The Commission deferred conducting the 2011 survey due to budget restrictions.
Parks a popular destination – The 2008 survey contracted by Washington State Parks showed
that more than 70% of Washington residents had visited a state park within the previous
two years and thought the Commission did a good job managing their park system. The Commission
is committed to investing in its employees with training, recognition and advancement opportunities
that contribute to the delivery of excellent service to the public.
Goal No. 4 – Facilities
Improve the old, well-loved park system . . . so that citizens have safe and modern parks.
Deferred maintenance progress: In 2011, the agency began adding new projects to a larger deferred maintenance
list and retired the original 1999 Proviso List, now obsolete. Future agency budget requests will include requests for
resources to inventory and track agency needs.
Major renovations progress: In calendar year 2011, Washington State Parks completed 35 major renovations
projects. These projects, which improve the quality and safety of parks, include new cabins, trail projects, building restorations,
water and sewer systems and more. The following document includes a full list of 2011 major renovations:
Examples of improvements
Left: Rehabilitated guard house at Fort Worden State Park.
Right: New comfort station at Columbia Hills State Park.
Goal No. 5 – Partnerships
Double participation to 500,000 annual volunteer hours and 500 partnerships . . . so that citizens are
actively recruited, welcomed and engaged in improving their parks and recreation opportunities.
Volunteer progress: State Parks recorded 271,260 volunteer hours in 2011.
Total Volunteer Hours
Partnership progress: State Parks staff reported the goal of 581 partnerships was met in 2010.
Pitching in to help: Volunteers help park staff provide excellent services by pitching
in with campground hosting, office work, park cleanup and program offerings. The hours provided by volunteers
in 2011 added help nearly equivalent to 130 full-time staff. Meanwhile, partnership efforts such as the annual
Coastal Cleanup and a new alliance of agencies and organizations called the Washington Clean Coast Alliance
help with the care and improvement of parks.
Goal No. 6 – Financial strategy
All state parks will have business plans that include cost-saving strategies and four revenue sources
(facility fees, product and service revenues, taxes and donations) . . . so that parks are managed
with a focus on financial sustainability, efficiency and innovation.
Progress: 102 state parks had business plans in place by Dec. 31, 2011.
*This initiative was on hold in 2009, due to budget reductions and layoffs.
Financial sustainability: Offering visitors new options also results in greater
revenue to help operate parks. Examples are the popular cabins and historic house rentals available
in several locations. In the past few years, park stores have been added in more than 20 parks around
Goal No. 7 – Trails
Improve facilities and add trail miles on winter recreation, land and water trails
. . . so that recreational trail opportunities are expanded and improved for citizens.
Trails Progress in 2011:
Added 5.5 miles of hiking trail at Columbia Hills; added water-trail campsites at Daroga, Lincoln Rock and
Wenatchee Confluence; added composting toiled on trail at Wallace Falls.
Happy trails: Long-distance land and water trails, as well as in-park trails
offer visitors plenty of healthy exercise options. The Commission is committed to developing long-distance and
cross-state trails as well as increasing features that make trails more usable to visitors. Plans include
making connections between state and local trail systems. Clockwise from top: A cyclist breezes along the
Columbia Plateau Trail; equestrians enjoy a ride-and-camp experience on the John Wayne Pioneer Trail; hikers
walk the trails at Dosewallips State Park; and kayakers encounter an orca on the Cascadia Marine Trail in Puget Sound.
Goal No. 8 – Expanded and new parks
Work toward expanding popular existing parks and opening three new parks
. . . so that parks and recreation opportunities are available to meet future needs in a
Progress on expansion parks:
- 2005: Nine parks and a trail were identified for expansion.
- 2006: Budget work for projects completed.
- 2007: Planning and development continues.
- 2008: Planning and development continues.
- 2009: Planning and development continues.
- 2010: Planning and development continues.
- 2011 Progress:
- Iron Horse/John Wayne Pioneer Trail – Developed a Trail Master Plan.
- Pearrygin Lake – Designed the Rex Derr Trail.
- Riverside – Constructed new equestrian campground, expanded existing ORV park, possible land exchanges and interpretive opportunities.
Progress on new parks:
- Lake Spokane: Goal deferred due to budget restraints.
- Miller Peninsula: Goal deferred due to budget restraints.
- Nisqually-Mashel: Goal deferred due to budget restraints.
Left: New campground loop and picnic facilities at Grayland Beach State Park
Right: New yurt at Kanaskat-Palmer State Park.
Goal No. 9 – Historic sites
Improve four major historic sites. . . so that the state's heritage is available to citizens now and into the future.
2011 Historic site progress:
- Olmstead Place
- Seaton Schoolhouse chinking and daubing project completed
- Dairy Barn stabilized
- 1908 Red Barn cleaned and repainted
- Seaton Schoolhouse and Olmstead family house porch, new shake roofs installed
|Saint Edward Seminary,|
|Fort Simcoe, near |
|Olmstead Place, near|
|Cle Elum Depot|
Goal No. 10 – Interpretation
Tell the Ice Age floods story. . . so that our state's dramatic geologic history is available to citizens.
Progress on Ice Age floods interpretation:
- Ice Age Floods Plan developed, 2005.
- Ice Age Floods Plan completed, adopted by Commission
Final Ice Age Floods Plan text.pdf
Final Ice Age Floods Plan maps.pdf
(725kb PDF), 2006
- Phase 1 development completed on interpretive exhibit display for visitors at
several parks: Sun Lakes-Dry Falls; Palouse Falls; Ginkgo Petrified Forest; Beacon Rock; Steamboat Rock;
Yakima Sportsman. Developing a conceptual site, building, interpretive plan for Dry Falls Visitor Center,
Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park.
- 2009 progress: Designed and sited three interpretive panels for Columbia Hills State Park; completed
design work for Dry Falls Interpretive Center; working with advocates of federal legislation and affected agencies to pursue.
- 2010 progress: No additional progress made in 2010.
- 2011 progress: Interpretive panels created, awaiting funds to install, for Lake Lenore and Columbia Hills.
A landscape defined: This view of the Columbia Gorge from Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park
near Coulee City captures the drama of the epic Ice Age floods that swept through much of the state 13,000 to
15,000 years ago. State Parks staff is working with geologists and other agencies and states to capture the
excitement of the story for citizens and out-of-state visitors.
Goal No. 11 – 100 Connections
100 citizen gift improvements enhance parks all over Washington. . . so that citizens
contribute to their favorite parks.
Progress: 63 of 100 citizen gift improvement projects were complete at the end of 2011.
Working together: Park managers are working with friends groups, communities, and
youth and recreation organizations all over the state to complete gift projects that enhance and
improve favorite parks. State Parks staff works hard to strengthen bonds between communities and
parks with such activities.