In 1998, the St. Joseph County called on the Eppley Institute to create a comprehensive park and recreation plan that would do the following: clarify the roles of the various park management entities, set direction for future recreation needs, and set priorities for scarce resource allocation.
The Eppley Institute:
- Conducted a Recreation and Parks Trends Analysis to highlight issues that impact the delivery of services to St. Joseph County,
- Projected solutions that address current trends and issues,
- Identified current recreational services available to the residents of St. Joseph County,
- Conducted stakeholder interviews to determine community perspectives.
A five-year strategic action plan, which identified specific actions to be taken, suggested a timeline for implementation, and included a prioritization of strategies and needs, was developed for St. Joseph County Regional Parks and Recreation. This plan was adopted by the county and numerous advancements have been made.