Saturday, September 25, 2021

Our Park and Recreation Story: The Story Behind the Southlake Parks Facebook Page

Every once in a while, a Facebook page pops up that captures the heart and soul of a community. A large part of our Park and Recreation Story is told through the lens of the Southlake Parks Facebook page.

The Southlake Parks Facebook page exemplifies the success that comes when innovative employees showcase the unique joys of their daily lives with our community. With over 4,000 followers, the Southlake Parks page is the brainchild of a few Parks employees, who wanted to document their experience and share their passion for the job with the Southlake community.

It’s no secret that we take our parks seriously in Southlake. With 36 public parks covering a total of 1,139 acres of public space, keeping our parks in tip-top shape is not for the light-hearted. Not only is it an immensely physical job, requiring copious amounts of endurance and muscle-power, but it is also a surprising job. You never know when you might run into a critter that calls a Southlake public park home.

Scrolling through the Southlake Parks Newsfeed, Southlake residents and fans from all over are treated with up-close shots of unconventional neighbors such as frogs, worms, and snakes. Our dedicated Parks employees love to show off the majestic creatures they meet on the job. The page also serves as a warm-hearted outlet to uplift and showcase fellow Parks employees. By sharing their story every day, Southlake Parks employees provide a behind-the-scenes look at the labor it takes to maintain our parks to world-class standards. The followers and likes the page has amassed demonstrates that the Southlake community appreciates this type of personalized storytelling.

We asked the face behind the Parks Facebook Page, Landscape Technician Jose Guzman, to tell us more about running the page.

My Park and Recreation Story: Jose Guzman

What’s your job, and how long have you been with the City?
I’m a Landscape Technician and a Playground Safety Inspector. I’ve been working with the City for seven years.

Why did you decide to start the Parks Facebook Page?
My work partner and I decided to share some of our daily work life on Facebook. I had just started working for the City, and I was amazed at how beautiful the parks were in Southlake.

What type of content do you try to share?
I like highlighting some of the daily work that we do. I also enjoy sharing the different parks and their amenities. My favorite is sharing our Southlake nature, “Neature.”

What do you hope to accomplish with this page?
I hope people see the great parks that we have, and it gets them out and about to enjoy them. There are so many hidden gems around town that many people don’t know about, and I hope they will take the time to explore them.

What’s it like interacting with the community and the large following you have amassed?
I like getting messages from people that see a certain playground, park, or trail, and are curious about their location. I love giving them suggestions and perhaps sending them to their new favorite park.

We love keeping up with the Parks Department’s adventures, and you can too by following the Southlake Parks Facebook Page. Thank you to our Parks team for helping us tell Our Park and Recreation Story every day!