The Inside Scoop on Winston-Salem’s Parks & Recreation Department: Interview with William Royston

We are very excited to start a new blog series where we will be featuring various people, places and events throughout Winston-Salem!

For our first blog of this Winston-Salem Features series we thought as it’s currently summer it’s only fitting to showcase what outdoor fun our city has to offer. What better place to start than with the Winston-Salem Recreation & Parks Department?

Even longtime residents might not know how big a role recreation and parks plays in our city. Did you know that we have 75 parks in Winston-Salem? Or that the Winston-Salem Recreation & Parks Department maintains and operates over 3,700 acres in our beautiful city?

The reWilliam Roystoncently appointed director of the Winston-Salem Recreation & Parks Department, William Royston, sat down with us and shared some of the great new ideas he has for our parks and recreation department. He and the entire staff are dedicated to help improve our city’s outdoor areas and recreation centers.

Originally from Atlanta, William has called Winston-Salem his home for some time. Prior to being appointed as the director of the department he worked under past director Tim Grant as the Parks Superintendent for ten years. He’s found home in both our Recreation & Parks Department and Winston-Salem, and plays a crucial role in building our community.

William shares, “Winston-Salem is a rich, diverse community. One of the things I love about this city is that even with all of its new developments; we’ve found ways to celebrate everything that makes our city unique.”

He originally got into recreation and parks as a way to give back to communities. He elaborates, “When I was much younger, there were times I wasn’t always an angel. Working in recreation gives me the opportunity and ability to give back to people that I feel I used to take from.” However, getting to work with people he considers ‘some of the brightest minds’ has kept him in the field.

This is an exciting time in the Parks & Recreation Department too. They are putting the recreation & parks bond money, which was approved by voters in 2014, to good use.

One project that we at Winston-Salem Ambassadors are very excited about is The Quarry. According to William, “we think this park will be one of our cities best kept secrets”. This scenic park will portray stunning views of downtown Winston-Salem and surrounding areas as well as feature a fresh water lake, a greenway access and plenty of walking trails. It’s anticipated to open later this month! Here are a couple sneak peek photos to tide you over in the meantime!

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Another great opportunity to stay cool this summer is the many splash pads that have opened recently. These will feature no standing water and are a great way to cool off in the North Carolina heat! Locations that opened this year include: Rupert Bell, Sedge Garden, Hathaway, and Little Creek parks. Be on the lookout for ones to open next spring at Polo and Mineral Springs pools.

For more information on our parks and recreations centers, be sure to visit their website at: http://cityofws.org/Departments/Recreation-Parks

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