Metro Parks Tacoma

History of CHIP-in!

CHIP-in! Brochure CoverAlthough CHIP-in! grew out of economic necessity, it is developing into a unique, long-lasting approach to park maintenance. Still in its early stages, the program is a success, but community involvement is still needed.

CHIP-in! originated in 2003 when Metro Parks faced a lack of funds for maintaining all of the city's parks. Rather than take drastic measures - simply closing parks and walking away - we took a proactive approach by developing a partnership between the park district and the community that will keep parks open and usable.

Through CHIP-in!, which stands for Citizens Helping to Improve Parks, members of the community can join a parks group to maintain neighborhood parks that would otherwise become overgrown and to save facilities that would otherwise be locked up. CHIP-in! has grown to include all park facilities, so local businesses and non-profit organizations will be able to participate by donating supplies like bark or work gloves or just their hearts and labor.

Many don't realize that Metro Parks manages over 2,696 acres of parks and green space, historic landmarks, community centers, greenhouses, beautiful gardens and other unusual attractions like Meadow Park Golf Course, the W.W. Seymour Botanical Conservatory and more. With all these commitments, we must make careful decisions about where money will be spent.

The CHIP-in! program manages multiple community park groups ranging from individuals, to large neighborhood groups, to local businesses, to larger governmental agencies. However, the need is still there for potential park groups and volunteers to step forward to relieve other groups when their commitments end. We're encouraging people to make a difference in their community, to advance their own physical health and wellness, and to expose their children to nature.