Southwest Park and Recreation Training Institute 


The 2020 Park Planning and Maintenance Academy will be open for registration on January 13, 2020.  Years 1 and 2 along with the Graduate Institute will be offered Tuesday-Thursday, August 4-6, with a welcome reception on Monday, August 3 at 6 p.m.  All attendees welcome to attend.  2019 was a sell out for Year 1.  Don't delay in registering.  You can register and pay later if needed.


  A Welcome Reception and cocktails will be available to all attendees on Monday evening, August 3 beginning at 6 p.m.  Heavy hors d'oeuvres along with beer and wine will be offered.  Early check in for the Academy will be available to avoid long lines on Tuesday morning.  Attendees from the Denver metro area are encouraged to come to meet fellow participants.

We are happy to announce that we will, again, be located at the Hilton DoubleTree Denver-Aurora at Iliff Ave. and Interstate 225. Only 2 miles north of Cherry Creek State Park.  Those that wish to camp can easily do so, but reservations need to be made early.  There many amenities to the hotel, as you can see below, with close by restaurants and conveniences.  You are encouraged to secure a room as soon as possible to avoid any inconveniences in having to be at another location.  Please use this link to make a reservation!


Airport Shuttle offered by the Doubletree!  Please read, print and take with you on your trip!

The DoubleTree by Hilton, Denver
Aurora is pleased to offer complimentary airport transportation to and from the Denver
International Airport (DIA). We also offer a complimentary 5 mile radius local shuttle, based upon availability.
13696 East Iliff Place Aurora, CO 80014 | 303-337-2800
Airport Pick Up
•Call the hotel at 303 337 2800 and reach the front desk to let us know you have arrived. Please give us your
name and phone number and we will let you know when the next shuttle will be pick you up.
•After collecting your luggage, head over to East Baggage Claim , Level 5 , and find Door 505 . Then, make your way
over to the 3 rd island outside of the doors where it says “ HOTELS
•Once our shuttle arrives, make sure the driver is heading towards the DoubleTree Denver Aurora and hop on
Airport Drop Off:
•Upon check in, we are happy to arrange a shuttle departure time with you. Be sure to sign up in advance, so we
can ensure we have space for you and we don’t leave without you!
•We will drop you off at the East Terminal, Level 5, Door 505, at the 3 rd island (where we picked you up!)
Please note:
•Space is limited on our shuttle, so please make sure you speak with our team for pick ups and drop offs in order
to ensure a seat.
•Our shuttle is available during specific times. Please speak with our agents to learn more!
•DIA is approximately 20 40 minutes from our hotel, depending on traffic.
•SuperShuttle is available at $22.00/per person/one way. Their phone number is 303-370-1300 or visit
•Taxi services, including Uber and Lyft, are also available

Check out our photo gallery from 2018 PPMA.


The Toro Corporation recognizes the importance of quality professional training.  With our distributors, LL Johnson and Professional Turf Products, we are thankful for the opportunity to help bring the Park Planning and Maintenance Academy to you, the members of the parks and sports turf industry.  Many challenges lie ahead in your diverse profession.  The knowledge you gain in the PPMA courses and the professional networking you develop with one another will go a long way to give you the resources you need to help solve your problems and  create new opportunities.  We at Toro, want to be a resource to you as well, with state of the art equipment and management resources designed for your current needs and future demands.

Enjoy the Academy and we are proud to be a part of the team making this professional training opportunity possible.  Have a safe journey to Colorado, enjoy your surroundings and remember we are always available for you, so please let us know how we can assist in making your jobs easier.

The Toro Company

Boyd Montgomery, CSE

PPMA has various sponsorship levels available, contact Mendy Putman, PPMA Superintendent (719) 651-2125 for sponsorship opportunities during the event.

Thank You to Our Sponsors:




Registrations for all years of PPMA will open January 13, 2020.  Go to the HOME page for the links.

Anyone interested in attending without going through Year 1 first, needs to call Mendy Putman to discuss.

After completing Year 1 and Year 2 curriculum, students will receive a certificate of completion. 

The registration fee is $425 and includes all supplies, the fees for the field studies, snacks, a box lunch on the field study day and the ceremony banquet on Friday.  Early registration is January 13th - July 1st.  On July 1st the registration fee will be raised to $450.

Continuing Education Credits (CEU) are available for all years.  A total of 1.55 CEUs are available when all sessions are completed within that year. Cost is $25 per person for the processing of the CEUs.  Registration and payment can easily be done when you go into the registration system.  Please note, you are responsible for obtaining a CEU card when you arrive and making sure it is signed and turned in at the end of the event to Mendy.

2020 Graduate Academy.  Those that have completed Year 1 and Year 2 Academies can continue to develop their professional education.  Learn about new, progressive ideas and current park maintenance issues and trends.  Each year of the Graduate Academy will feature new topics.  See below for the topics this coming year.

Academy program begins at 7:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 4 and ends at 1 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 6.  A Welcome Reception and Check In will be held at the hotel beginning at 6 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 3.  Meals included are breakfast (for those staying at the hotel), lunch on Tuesday and Wednesday and an Awards Banquet will conclude the event on Thursday from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.  Please make your flight plans accordingly.

Year 1 establishes a baseline of understanding the fundamentals of park maintenance, design and resource management through a broad spectrum of topics.

Year 1 topics:

  • ADA Requirements and Elements of Playground Design
  • A Comprehensive Approach to Irrigation Water Management
  • Understanding GIS Systems
  • Athletic Field Maintenance - Best Practices and New Ideas
  • Principles of Maintenance Contracts
  • Arboriculture 101 at Cherry Creek State Park Marina
  • Principles of Park Planning and Design Practicum
Field study destinations include:
  • Turf! Turf! Turf! – A Tour of Dick’s Sporting Goods Park
  • Highlighting Benefits and Addressing Challenges of Community Gardens
  • THINK BIG! Planning and Development of Legacy Park Projects: A tour of Phillip S. Miller Adventure Park

Year 2 builds upon the Year 1 curriculum with advanced training in park maintenance practices, management and park design. 

Year 2 topics:

  • Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Master Plans: Understanding this Fundamental Element of Park Planning
  • Irrigation Principles for Water Conservation: Implementing Techniques and Strategies
  • Best Practices for Chemical Applications
  • Risk Management
  • Customer Service: Dealing with the Public in the Moment
  • Tree and Hazard Assessment
  • Principles of Athletic Complex Design Practicum
Field study destinations: Still in Proposal Form
  • Westminster Center Park
  • Sports Mania! - Aurora Sports Complex
  • Landfill Re-purposing: Trash or Treasure? - David Lorenz Park
  • Nature Up and Close and Personal - South Platte Park and Carson Nature Center

The Graduate Institute of PPMA will be offered for graduated students to return for advanced training on a variety of topics that will change each year depending on demand, industry trends and challenges.

 2020 Graduate Institute Topics: The committee is still working on the topics for next year's Institute.  Check back around March 1st.

For more information, help or questions, please call the PPMA Superintendent, Mendy Putman, at (719) 651-2125.

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