Recreation & Wellness Facet from 2018 National Citizen Survey Shows Increase in Quality of Recreational Programs and Classes

Date of release:  December 13, 2018

The City of Paducah is reviewing the results from the National Citizen Survey™ with this release focusing on Recreation & Wellness.  Questions associated with Recreation & Wellness are related to healthcare, health services, and food in addition to several questions about recreational opportunities and city parks. 

Citizen Survey graph about recreation programsThe question in this category that saw one of the largest increases in positive results asked citizens to rate the quality of the recreation programs in Paducah.  In 2013, this question resulted in a 58% positive response.  That number increased to 64% in 2016 and to 72% this year.

Parks & Recreation Department Director Mark Thompson says, “Parks and Recreation staff members have upped their game with regular postings on today’s social media conduits such as Instagram, Instagram Story, Twitter, and Facebook. This effort specifically is directed to get the word out so that Paducah citizens can enjoy our award-winning recreation programs, classes, special events, and park facilities. We look to continue this upward trend as social media evolves and more park and recreation users are added to our information loop.”

Some of the questions in the Citizen Survey ask citizens to provide information about how often they take part in an activity.  Regarding how often a citizen visits a park, the survey shows that 87% visit a city park at least once a month.  That number has remained stable over time with the results from the previous surveys showing 89% in 2013 and 86% in 2016. 

City Manager Jim Arndt says, “Paducah has a vast parks network with more than two dozen parks and facilities.  We have small neighborhood parks and an interesting riverfront area in addition to Noble Park, our Central Park which attracts visitors from around the region.  I’m thrilled to see that most citizens visit our parks at least once a month.  They are perfect settings for relaxing, exercising, and enjoying time with friends and family.”

Recreation & Wellness is a category that has seen significant increases since Paducah began surveying its residents.  Paducah received an award for the improvements in 2017 based on the 2016 Citizen Survey results.  In October 2017, the City of Paducah received the Voice of the People Award for Transformation in Recreation & Wellness from the National Research Center, Inc. (NRC) and the International City/County Management Association (ICMA).  Compared with all of the communities that participated in the 2016 National Citizen Survey, Paducah residents reported the highest levels of improvement in the Recreation & Wellness category. 

The National Citizen Survey, which asks questions about a community’s livability, was mailed earlier this year to 1500 randomly-selected households within the Paducah city limits.  Each question on the survey is connected to one of eight facets:  Safety, Mobility, Natural Environment, Built Environment, Economy, Recreation & Wellness, Education & Enrichment, and Community Engagement.  For more information including Paducah’s survey instrument and reports, please visit