RALEIGH, N.C. — Governor Roy Cooper announced Tuesday that $8.5 million in grants to fund 19 local parks and recreation projects across the state through the Parks and Recreation Trust Fund. The Parks and Recreation Authority approved the grant recipients at an Aug. 11 meeting.

“Getting outdoors to enjoy parks and greenspaces improves people’s health and quality of life, and these grants will help towns and counties to provide recreation for their communities,” Governor Cooper said. “These investments can help revitalize our communities, boost local economies and promote tourism.”

The local communities applied for the grants to fund land acquisition, development and renovation of public park and recreation areas. Every year, the Parks and Recreation Authority allocates 30% of PARTF’s total funding to local municipalities and counties. A maximum of $500,000 can be awarded to a single project, and the awardees must match funds dollar-for-dollar for the grant amount. This year, the Authority considered 52 grant applications requesting a total of more than $21 million.

“Congratulations to the communities that received grants to create and expand their park facilities,” said N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources Secretary D. Reid Wilson. “Robust local outdoor recreation opportunities, in addition to our state and national parks, have helped North Carolina become the Great Trails State, and we look forward to seeing the outcome of these projects.”

“Since 1995, the Parks and Recreation Trust Fund has helped give local governments the ability to build new parks and improve facilities,” said Brian Strong, director of the Division of Parks and Recreation. “These investments have a widespread impact in creating more places to conserve, to recreate, and to learn about nature and the outdoors.”

The Parks and Recreation Trust Fund is administered through the N.C. Division of Parks and Recreation and allocated by the state budget. Local grants are awarded annually by the Authority at its quarterly meeting in August.

Grant recipients and award amounts are as follows: