Editor's Desk - March 2010
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A Stitch in Time

This was the year I finally learned to knit. I know, I know. You're wondering what's the point.

I'll get to it, I promise.

But first, back to knitting. I've found notes from as long ago as 2002 that stated my intention to learn to knit. But I never got around to it, until this year, when a friend was offering a perfect combination of supplies and videos for beginners.

I started with learning to cast on, to do the knit stitch, to bind off. I knit my first project, a salmon-colored cowl with two buttons, which comes in handy in my unheated home office as the temperature dips into single digits, I can tell you. I moved on to a longer scarf, then learned to purl and started knitting yet another scarf—ribbed this time—with some beautiful hand-spun yarn.

Then the trouble arose. My newest project wasn't going to be long enough, and this was one-of-a-kind yarn. In other words, I was going to have a too-short scarf. Beautiful, but not very handy. So I frogged the whole thing. (Frogged: to rip out the stitches and start over again.) I started over again from the beginning, this time making it a bit narrower. At the same time, I asked my friend who had made the yarn if she had it in her to make some more like it. She did, and amazingly it's a near-exact match. It'll be perfect for a hat. And both projects should be done just in time to put them away until next winter.

The point is this: If a thing is worth doing, it's worth doing well. It's worth it to get it right.

And that goes for hobbies like knitting, as well as professions like managing recreation, sports and fitness facilities.

We want to help you with all of your things that are worth doing well. We want to help you get it right the first time. We especially want to help you avoid frogging your own projects to start over from scratch. It's not so bad when knitting, where 90 percent of the fun is just the process itself. But for your facilities? You certainly don't want to work your way through the bulk of a project only to discover you have to start all over again.

This issue offers plenty of advice to help you get it right the first time, whether it's something as old-hat as building a new playground or something strikingly new, like getting involved in social media marketing.

On page 18, you'll find our look behind the scenes at playground safety and accessibility. In this story, we've asked experts and facility managers for their advice on what makes a safe and accessible playground, covering everything from the equipment's design to the surface below, as well as ongoing maintenance.

On page 26, we're featuring a story on ways community organizations across the country are teaming up to create synergistic programs that ensure their users' health and wellness. After all, it makes sense to take what you're doing right, pair up with someone else who's getting another part of the equation right and offer a sum that is greater than its individual parts.

And on page 30, you'll find our guide to marketing in a Web 2.0 world. We've talked to recreation agencies that have jumped on the social media bandwagon and are using Twitter, YouTube and Facebook to great advantage. Let their examples lead the way as you delve into this new way of getting the word about your programs and facilities out to the public.

On top of these focused features, we've got the usual mix of expert columns, facility profiles and product showcases. All of it adds up to help ensure you're getting the nuts and bolts—as well as the thrills and frills—right at your own facility.


Emily Tipping
Editorial Director


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