An advisory council is a voluntary group of individuals who meet on a regular basis to support the effective functioning of their local park. Councils promote ways for the community to better utilize the Chicago Park District's programs and facilities; provide communication to the Chicago Park District on matters relating to their parks; increase community awareness of Chicago Park District projects; provide the community with a vehicle through which park information can be shared; and assist in locating alternate funding sources to enhance park facilities. In an effort to do these things,many councils host events and other related activities throughout the year.The Chicago Park District encourages interested park patrons to participate in or form an advisory council in their local park. The Chicago Park District seeks advisement from councils regarding services provided to parks, needs, problems, accomplishments, and any other matters councils consider important to the operation of their parks.

Park Advisory Councils

Park Advisory Councils represent more than 225 parks in all 77 community areas across the City of City. Park Advisory Councils (PAC) are the community voice for their neighborhood park, children’s playground, beach or natural area.  PAC’s help make a difference in their parks whether they are partnering with their park,  creating a garden, fundraising for a new playground, hosting special events, sponsoring a recreation program or advocating for improved services in the park.


Volunteer Appreciation Day

The Chicago Park District thanks all of our volunteers for the countless hours given to their parks. Whether you serve on a Park Advisory Council, keep time at bitty basketball games, pull weeds, or clean up your dog park - your volunteerism makes a difference in parks across the City of Chicago.

 

Thank You!
 

Forming a Park Advisory Council:

  • Meet park supervisor to discuss forming a Park Advisory Council
  • The group must submit a letter of intent to the park supervisor
  • Set up a community meeting that encompasses the areas around the play lot
  • Post fliers in the park, aldermanic office, library, and surrounding community groups, local businesses etc.
  • Invite the Chicago Park District to talk about advisory councils
  • All interested members must fill out the PAC Application
  • Schedule elections giving 14 days notice
  • Once you have you have an elected board set up you should fill out the NEW PAC Registration form


What makes a PAC compliant?

Registered Chicago Park District PACs, enjoy the use of rooms, space for their monthly meeting, application fee waivers, expedited event permit processing, partnership benefits of no or reduced fees and liability insurance. If a PAC is not compliant they will not be privy to these benefits.

  • Submitting Annual Report
  • Holding Elections
  • Submitting bylaws to the Chicago Park District
  • Maintaining PAC binder in parks, which includes: membership applications, meeting agendas, meeting minutes, financial reports
  • Following the Code of Conduct


Park Advisory Council Annual Report Now Due!

Each year, the Chicago Park District requests information from each advisory council in an effort to learn more about our park Advisory Councils and keep up to date records of its members. Councils formed after October 1, 2019, are not required to complete this form until the next year.

Park Advisory Council Annual Report

Submitting accomplishments along with general information about the council, through the form below, is one of the requirements for an advisory council to remain in good standing.  Councils that are in good standing are eligible for the Chicago Parks Foundation grant award, usage of the council partnership code for council events, and an extra raffle ticket to win a Movie in the Park and a Concert in the Park, awarded at the annual Park Advisory Council conference on March 21, 2010


Park Advisory Council Workshops

Park Advisory Council Conference

Presented by the Chicago Park District and the Chicago Parks Foundation in collaboration with our Park Advisory Council (PAC) Partners this FREE Conference will be a day of networking, workshops and resources for PACs from across Chicago. More than 300 dedicated park volunteers will assemble for this annual conference to learn best practices from experts, network with their fellow PAC members, and be inspired by the work Park Advisory Councils are doing in parks across Chicago.

 

Save the Date: March 21, 2020

2020 Park Advisory Council Conference March 21!

 

2019 PAC Conference Session Presentations:

Thank you to the UIC Illinois Prevention Research Center and Work2gether4Peace for recording the 2019 sessions.

Watch the 2019 PAC Conference Session Videos


Advisory Council Forms

All existing and newly formed advisory councils and those interested in becoming an advisory council, must review and complete the forms below. Fax the completed Application, Registration Form, Partnership Pledge and By-Laws to the Chicago Park District Community Relations Division at (312) 742-2797.

What makes a PAC compliant?

Registered Chicago Park District PACs, enjoy the use of rooms, space for their monthly meeting, application fee waivers,  expedited event permit processing, partnership benefits of no or reduced fees and liability insurance. If a PAC is not compliant they will not be privy to these benefits. PACs will be treated like every other community group and organization until they become compliant. 



Advisory Councils List

View a list of parks with advisory councils, and get meeting dates and contact information.



Advisory Council Applications

FAQ's

View a list of Advisory Council Frequently Asked Questions.

 

 

 

 

Contact Us

 

 

 

 

If you have any further questions about Chicago Park District advisory councils, please call the Department of Legislative and Community Affairs at (312) 742-2797.

 


ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

The Chicago Park District has partnered with the University of Illinois Chicago, Illinois Prevention Resource Center of a series of  trainings to help Park Advisory Councils with formation, fundraising and special events.

PAC 101

Launching a PAC

Finance

Events, Permitting, and Programs

Park Safety and Maintenance