COVINGTON, Ky. – A new online registration system will make it easy for Covington residents to learn details about Parks & Rec activities and programs like soccer, pickleball, softball, and swimming and stay up to date on event delays and cancellations.
It’s also going to help the City’s Parks and Recreation Department better plan.
Through RecDesk, a management software for local government and nonprofits, users create an account for free that enables two-way communication about the various programs and activities. Eventually, it’ll also be used to process park shelter reservations and online payments.
“This is going to streamline our registration process, create better communication with our patrons, and create a central hub for everything,” said Covington Parks and Recreation Manager Ben Oldiges. “This software will allow for better data management and create more efficiency in our department. That adds up to better service to our patrons.”
While working to expand recreation program offerings for 2022, Oldiges said he and his team knew that getting a structured recreation management system in place would be critical.
“If we know who and how many are attending a program or event, that allows us to better accommodate our participants,” Oldiges said. “If people register online, we can examine data and take note of well-attended programs, fluctuations in attendance, factors that might impact those numbers, and move forward better informed for planning future programs. ... Currently we operate as, ‘Hey, here’s a program, come if you want to.’”
The program will also help with staffing programs and events.
For now, the software will be used specifically for program registration, but by January 2023 Covington residents will also be able to use RecDesk to reserve and rent shelters. Until then, Oldiges said, residents should use the same process they’re accustomed to on the City’s website.
And while it’s not mandatory that residents create an account with RecDesk in order to participate in Parks & Rec’s programs, Oldiges said he hopes they will.
“We want to stress that if someone shows up for a program and they haven’t registered through RecDesk, they will not be turned away,” he said. “We’re going to accommodate them no matter what, and we’ll be planning for extra people for all our programs. If we have ten people registered for ‘Outdoor Movie Night,’ we’ll plan for 15.”
RecDesk also allows Parks and Recreation staff to directly communicate with patrons who’ve signed up for programs by way of email or text. That means no second-guessing whether an event is delayed or canceled due to bad weather.
“With RecDesk, I can email them and let them know the status of an event,” Oldiges said. “Or, if they’ve opted for text messages, and I hope they do, I can let them know through a text.”
To create a RecDesk account and register for programs:
- Visit the Covington Parks & Recreation RecDesk site HERE or https://covparks.recdesk.com/Community/Home
- Click the “Create Account” tab and complete the basic information.
- Once completed, return to the “Home” page.
- Click on the “Programs” tab.
- Click on the program you want to register for.
- Follow the steps on the screen.
- You are now registered for the program.
“The lengthiest part of the process is creating an account, and that actually only takes about five minutes,” Oldiges said. “From that point, anytime someone wants to register for a program, simply log in and select the program.”
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