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Community Parks and Recreation Grants

DCNR’s Bureau of Recreation and Conservation builds connections between citizens and the outdoors by providing funding and technical assistance support for local recreation and park improvement projects through its Community Conservation Partnerships Program grants.

Funding priority is given to projects that implement elements of Pennsylvania’s 2020–2024 Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (PDF).

Eligible applicants for parks and recreation grants include:

  • Municipalities

  • Municipal agencies

  • Nonprofit organizations

Most of the available funding opportunities require a cash or non-cash matching contribution that is equal to 50 percent of the project cost.

Recreation and Conservation Planning Funding

Funding is available to assists communities with planning for public parks, recreation, conservation areas, and facilities. Examples of projects can include:

  • Master site development plans
  • Comprehensive park, recreation, and open space plans
  • Pool feasibility studies
  • Land conservation and stewardship plans
  • Indoor recreation facility feasibility studies

Additional information and resources, including guidance documents, pre-application tasks, and more is available at DCNR’s grant application website.

Park Rehabilitation and Development Funding

Funding also is available to assist communities with the rehabilitation and development of sustainable public parks, recreation and conservation areas, and facilities.

These projects can support both indoor and outdoor community recreation pursuits, such as:

  • Community swimming pool construction or redevelopment
  • Playground installation
  • Sports field installation 

Additional information and resources, including guidance documents, pre-application tasks, and more is available at DCNR’s grant application website.

Small Community Development Funding

Commonwealth municipalities with a population of 5,000 or less are eligible to receive grant funds with a reduced match requirement under the Small Community Program.

Grant funds must be used for rehabilitation and/or new development of basic outdoor recreation and park facilities that provide a high level of recreational value, such as playgrounds and pavilions with ADA accessibility. 

Eligible municipalities may request a minimum of $50,000 and a maximum of $70,000 in grant funds:

  • $10,000 is earmarked for Professional Services only and requires no match
  • $20,000 is earmarked for Materials and/or Equipment only and requires no match
  • Grant funds over $30,000 may be used for Materials, Equipment, and/or Labor and require a $1 for $1 match

Park Rehabilitation and Development Grant Project Webinar Series

DCNR’s Bureau of Recreation and Conservation offers informational videos for grantees to use throughout the project management process and for future grant applicants to learn more about what is involved with a Park Rehabilitation and Development grant project.

The webinars cover a variety of topics including:

Funding Sources

Community Recreation and Conservation Program grants are funded by:

  • Keystone Recreation, Park and Conservation Fund
  • Environmental Stewardship Fund
  • Growing Greener Bond Fund
  • Federal Land and Water Conservation Fund