ontario parks association

Protecting Tomorrow Today®

Education and Training

Ball Diamond Maintenance Workshop

Basic Chipper Handling Workshop

Book 7 Workshop

Bridge Inspection Workshop

One Day Chainsaw Safety 

Two Day Chainsaw Safety

 Chainsaw Safety Refresher

Irrigation Technician Workshop

Managing and Maintaining Your Sports Turf Infrastructure

Registered Playground Practitioner 

Seasonal Equipment Training

Spray Pad Practitioner

Trails Specialist Workshop

Train the Trainer Workshop

Parks Practitioner Designation Program

Click the image above to download the flyer and application form for our Parks Practitioner Designation Program.

Upcoming events

    • 23 Sep 2019
    • 8:30 AM
    • 24 Sep 2019
    • 4:30 PM
    • City of Belleville ~ Quinte Sports and Wellness Center - 265 Caniffton Road, Belleville, ON K8N 4V8
    • 7


    This two day course is an introduction to understand professional trail development and how it relates to trail maintenance. You will receive instruction on how to observe, detect, document and mitigate potential risk resulting from poor trail design, construction and maintenance. This workshop combines in classroom theory and hands-on experiences. Participants will leave the course with a tool kit on how to create and implement a successful trail maintenance program. This course will cover all types of trails from natural surface single track to 3 metre wide crushed aggregate. 

    This course will cover:

    • Overview of Professional Trail Development
    • The Science and Art of Trail Building
    • Maintenance of Trails
    • Environmental Impacts
    • Liability Issues
    • Handwork and Trail Construction Techniques

    DATE: September 23 & 24, 2019
    TIME: 8:30 am to 4:30 pm both days
    Quinte Sports and Wellness Center ~ Media Training Room (2nd floor)
    265 Cannifton Road
    Belleville, ON K8N 4V8



    OPA Member: $403.80

    Potential Member: $633.90

    Participants are required to have a CSA approved hard hat, safety glasses, closed toe safety shoes/boots, and gloves. 

    It is recommended that the participant bring with them the following equipment: 
    • pin flags
    • clinometer 
    • pulaski
    • mcleod rake
    And/or any other trail building tools/equipment the organization, government agency or participant intends to use for trail design, building and maintenance. The idea behind having your own tools/equipment onsite is to allow the opportunity for it to be integrated into the course and suit the specific needs/wants and desires of the participants.

    Please note: A bagged lunch is required at this course
    This course is an Ontario Trails Council approved training program.
    • 24 Sep 2019
    • 8:30 AM
    • 25 Sep 2019
    • 4:30 PM
    • Town of Whitby ~ Exicon - 100 Taunton Road East Whitby, ON L1R 3L5
    • 17


    With the increasing demand for spray pads in communities are you prepared to deal with the choices (and possibly trade-offs) that will need to be made when dealing with the installation of this type of equipment? Once through or recirculated, type of features required, type of surface, materials, location, understanding the context of the Health Act, responsibilities of owners, and water treatment and testing, all these options, questions and the need for a basic understanding of operations come to light with the installation of a spray pad.

    With these things in mind, Ontario Parks Association has developed a new spray pad operations course that will help prepare participants to be able to confidently respond to these questions and more. This session is the first of its kind in North America, and promises to be an exciting addition to the training program line up currently offered by OPA. This two day Spray Pad Practitioner program will include both theory and practical, with a visit to a local spray pad being part of the training.

    Following is an overview of the items that will be addressed during this training:

    • Design philosophy
      • Considerations (ie. ages, collaborative play, inclusive play, sensory stimulation, motor skills, etc.)
      • Selecting colours, location, patterns
      • Types of fixtures – fiberglass, stainless, aluminum, fixed and removable
      • Determining shape/size
      • Sequencing and determining flow pattern
      • Surfacing options
    • Considerations for construction
    • Water treatment and testing
    • Flow through, re-circulation and retain and reuse systems
    • Equipment (ie. pumps, strainers, UV)
    • Inspections (daily, pre-opening,  pre-season)
    • Signage
    • Winterizing
    • Ministry Guidelines

    Whether you are an operator, supervisor, manager, or health official, you will want to attend this exciting course to gain a stronger understanding of this increasingly popular equipment. 

    DATE: September 23 & 24, 2019

    TIME: 8:30am - 4:30pm

    LOCATION: Town of Whitby
    Exicon (formally Whitby Hydro) 
    100 Taunton Road East
    Whitby, ON L1R 3L5 

    SPRAY PAD PRACTICAL SITE:  McKinney Park (aka Folkstone Park) ~ 600 metres to the North of the classroom ~ Map from class room to park (10 minute walk)

    Parking is available at the Town of Whitby Employee parking lot across the street 333 McKinney Drive ~ Map from Employee parking lot to Hydro Building 

    Course Costing:
    OPA Member Price: $403.80 
    Potential Member Price: $633.90

    ***Please wear closed toe shoes to the training session***

    Please note that lunch is NOT provided at this location – please bring a lunch, drinks and snacks for this session.

    To attend this training please register online. Payment can be made online once an invoice has been sent from the office, via cheque (made payable to Ontario Parks Association) or by calling the OPA office with a credit card for processing (905-864-6182, ext. 6710).

    • 28 Oct 2019
    • 8:00 AM
    • 01 Nov 2019
    • 5:00 PM
    • Town of East Gwillimbury ~ East Gwillimbury Sports Complex - 1914B Mt Albert Rd, Sharon, ON L0G 1V0
    • 18


    The Ontario Parks Association (OPA) has developed the Registered Playground Practitioner Program to meet the needs of those involved and responsible for the hands-on inspections and maintenance of public playspaces and playground facilities.


    Safe Play - A High Priority

    The Ontario Parks Association places a high priority and commitment on the provision of safe play structures in our public spaces. We want to help ensure that they are safe and accessible. OPA also emphasizes the strong need to educate caregivers, supervisors and others about the benefits of positive and safe play experiences for our children.


    What You Will Learn

    Attending this course will teach you about significantly lowering the risk of injuries in play areas by providing a safe outdoor learning experience for all. This course uses the CAN/CSA-Z614-14, Children's Playspaces and Equipment, as a base document for the three independent sections of the course.


    Intensive 4 1/2-Day Program

    The Ontario Parks Association instructors include experts from the industry including an architect, liability expert, lawyer, representative of the CSA Standards Association and others to give in-depth training on the following topics and includes an on-site demonstration at a local playground structure:

    Playspace Strategies Playspace Evaluation Playspace Management
    space requirements playvalue and hazard identification liability and insurance
    playability inspection and maintenance due diligence
    access/egress requirements surfacing evaluation contractual obligations
    playspace design record keeping risk management
    age appropriate issues CSA overview owner/operator responsibilities
    playspace materials corrective actions employee/manager responsibilities
    playspace construction   playvalue and practical choices

    Principal Instructor Peter Kells

    Industrial Designer involved with the design of playground and recreation equipment since 1984. Involved with the writing of both the CSA playground standard and other international Standards. Executive member of IPA Canada (International Association for the Child's Right to Play). Playground Inspector since 2000.

    Upon completion of the program and achievement of a passing grade in the written examinations the participant will be registered by the Ontario Parks Association as a Playground Practitioner and thereby qualified to inspect playgrounds. 

    The OPA Registered Playground Practitioner Program is recognized as a playground safety course for inspectors by the Ministry of Children and Youth Services.

    Attendees are required to purchase a copy of the new CSA Z614-14 Standard. The test at the end of the course is open book so attendees will need their own copy (sharing books is not permitted). Attendees can choose to either use the PDF version and bring it on their tablet or other electronic device (so long as they can turn off the use of internet / text messaging for the test as any use of outside sources is considered cheating and will not receive a passing grade) or the hard copy of the book. Books can be purchased at the CSA Online Shop 

    (https://store.csagroup.org/ccrz__ProductDetails?viewState=DetailView&cartID=&portalUser=&store=&cclcl=en_US&sku=CAN%2FCSA-Z614-14 )



    October 28th - November 1st, 2019 (Please note the Thursday of this training falls on Halloween) 

    Monday - Thursday 8:00am to 5:00pm
    Friday 8:00am - 3:00pm


    East Gwillimbury Sports Complex ~ Ontario Loft
    1914B Mt. Albert Road 
    Sharon, ON L0G 1V0

    Practical location is within a 5 minute walk

    The course will start promptly at 8:00am each day.


    OPA Members: $1,268.00

    Non-Members: $1,498.00

    PLEASE NOTE: meals are not provided at this training session. Attendees will be required to bring their own lunch, coffee and snacks. 

Our training would not be possible without the support of our amazing sponsors:   


If you have questions or concerns about any of the OPA Training Sessions please click here to email the Training Department.

Click here to read our Registration Policies

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software