General Info

BREC - Providing for a Community & Protecting Natural Resources

  • For 73 years, BREC has offered parks and recreation programs to transform the physical, cultural and economic well- being of the East Baton Rouge Parish community. It was among the first park agencies in the nation to earn national accreditation and is currently undergoing the lengthy process to earn accreditation for an unprecedented sixth time. BREC is a two-time Gold Medal Award winner and 15-time national finalist.
  • BREC offers a unique mix of facilities, which mirror the history and rich natural resources in south Louisiana; including a state-of-the-art observatory, swamp nature center located in the urban core, equestrian park, Zoo, performing arts theatre, arboretum, botanical garden, a water park with the only surfing simulator in the state, six golf courses and an extreme sports park with a 30,000-foot concrete skate park, rock-climbing wall, BMX track and velodrome.
  • Through these facilities and through creative community partnerships, BREC continues to increase innovative program offerings and leverage tax revenue with entities such as Knock Knock Children’s Museum, Baton Rouge Soccer Club, Front Yard Bikes, the Main Library and many others operating in BREC parks.

Over the last year, BREC completed an ADA transition plan to ensure accessibility for all, adopted new brand standards for signage in all parks to improve wayfinding and branding and began the design, construction process or completed 71 capital improvement projects. Those projects include the first phase of the repurposed Howell Golf Course into a 144-acre community park, renovations to North Sherwood Forest Community Park, the expansion of the Botanical Gardens at Independence Community Park, numerous neighborhood parks, facilities damaged in the Flood of 2016 and the bike/ped master plan which will connect the entire Parish for pedestrians and bicyclists

To see more about the information in the video above, check out the
2018 Annual Report.

BREC Announced as Finalist for the 2019 National Gold Medal Awards in Parks and Recreation

May 2019

The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration (AAPRA), in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), is pleased to announce BREC is a finalist for the 2019 National Gold Medal Awards for Excellence in Park and Recreation Management. Musco Lighting LLC has been a proud sponsor of the Gold Medal Awards program for more than 10 years. 

Founded in 1965, the Gold Medal Awards program honors communities in the U.S. that demonstrate excellence in parks and recreation through long-range planning, resource management, volunteerism, environmental stewardship, program development, professional development and agency recognition. Applications are separated into seven classes, with five classes based on population, one class for armed forces recreation and one class for state park systems awarded on odd numbered years.  

For the fourth consecutive year, BREC is a finalist in the Class 1 Recreation category, which is the largest category and includes agencies serving communities with populations over 400,000. Previous winners in this category include Palm Beach County, Florida (2018), Johnson County, Kansas (2017), Chicago Park District (2014), Maryland-National Capital park and Planning Commission (2015) and Cleveland Metro Park System (2016). BREC is a two-time national Gold Medal award winner (1991 and 1975) and a 15-time national finalist.  

Agencies are judged on their ability to address the needs of those they serve through the collective energies of citizens, staff and elected officials. BREC joins three other finalists in their class that will compete for grand honors this year. 

“I am incredibly proud of the hard-working BREC staff, partner organizations and thousands of volunteers who help us provide the outstanding services and amenities being recognized on a national level,” said BREC Superintendent Corey Wilson. “We are honored to be named one of the best park systems in the country and will continue our efforts to transform our system —and our Parish —through the completion of the Imagine Your Parks 2 strategic plan,” said Wilson.? 

A panel of five park and recreation professionals reviews and judges all application materials. Judges are chosen for their considerable experience and knowledge in parks and recreation on both the local and national levels.   

This year’s finalists will compete for Grand Plaque Award honors this summer, and the seven Grand Plaque recipients will be announced live during the NRPA General Session at the 2019 NRPA Annual Conference in Baltimore, Maryland, Sept. 24-26, 2019.  

For more information on the Gold Medal Awards, visit or   

BREC is the agency that connects people to parks and nature in East Baton Rouge Parish. It is a political subdivision of the state of Louisiana created in 1946 to develop, maintain and operate public park and recreational facilities. Throughout its 73-year history, BREC has taken seriously its responsibility to improve the health, safety, environment and quality of life for all citizens. BREC was among the first park agencies to earn national accreditation and recently earned reaccreditation for an unprecedented fifth time, meeting all 144 standards. BREC is a two-time National Gold Medal Award winner and 15-time national finalist. For more information, visit  

The American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration is a non-profit organization founded to advance knowledge related to the administration of recreation and parks; to encourage scholarly efforts by both practitioners and educators that would enhance the practice of park and recreation administration; to promote broader public understanding of the importance of parks and recreation to the public good; and, to conduct research, publish scholarly papers and sponsor seminars related to the advancement of park and recreation administration. For more information, visit    

The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring that all Americans have access to parks and recreation for health, conservation and social equity. Through its network of nearly 60,000 recreation and park professionals and advocates, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit

Musco Lighting, LLC is a company that has specialized in lighting systems for sports and large areas for more than 30 years. Musco has pioneered dramatic improvements in energy efficiency and affordable ways to control wasted spill light and glare. Permanent and temporary lighting services range from neighborhood fields to NASCAR super speedways. For more information, visit  

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