Session Details

Reinterpreting Park Narratives Incorporating History of Marginalized Populations

In this unique deep dive workshop, learn how four different cities are engaging with historically-marginalized populations to reinterpret their history and narratives in parks. Speakers will share their community-engaged research working with First Nations and African American communities to generate counter narratives that can empower underrepresented voices in the park planning, design and programming processes.

The workshop looks at unique approaches to creating culturally informed "sense of place" that leads to strong emotional connections between communities and their public spaces. Creating spaces within our parks that foster these connections leads to the creation of park stewards and champions. Demonstrating care for people and their stories fosters reciprocity and a sense of community, which embodies the intent of the public commons.

Session Presentation Slides

Slide Deck: Reinterpreting Park Narratives: Incorporating History of Marginalized Populations


  • Define and understand the meaning and utility of "sense of place" as it relates to historically marginalized and disenfranchised populations though the lens of Black Americans.
  • Gain an understanding of the process of designing and implementing culturally relevant programming.
  • Identify the importance of partnerships to build organizational capacity to implement DEI.
  • Consider opportunities for expression of First Nations values in park design.
  • Learn about a unique engagement process centered on the values and principles of First Nations culture.
  • Increase awareness of the social-political context of Southern American urban landscapes with an emphasis on the impact of racial segregation on public space use.
  • Increase awareness of techniques for translating vision planning into policies and experiences that enable more diverse park uses and meanings.