Parks & Recreation

Parks & Recreation's 7 Guiding Principles

Community Identity

Use a consistent design signature in the design of parks, trails, amenities, and facilities throughout Otsego to convey a community identity. Recreation programming and events emphasize and instill the community's character and identity.

Natural Area Preservation

Preserve land for future generations through the acquisition of high quality natural areas for parks, open space, river access, and trail corridors. Acknowledge and protect the Mississippi and Crow River corridors in the city.

Access & Connectivity

Maintain and develop a well-connected trail network throughout the community including sidewalks, on-road trails, and off-road green-way corridors. Ensure the appropriate trail support facilities, such as trail-heads, signage, water fountains, and benches, are provided for high level experiences. Connect neighborhoods to destinations, such as schools, commercial areas, city facilities, river access points, and adjacent communities. Acknowledge and improve the Mississippi River Trail (MRT) as an important community trail corridor. Consider future development patterns and acquire key properties to provide access to high quality parkland throughout the city.

Service & Communication

Parks and recreation staff provide helpful and responsive service to Otsego's residents and visitors. Information on parks, facilities, and recreation programming is communicated effectively, easily accessible, and promoted to the community.

Quality Over Quantity

Focus on development of specific, prioritized high quality parks and recreation facilities in the community rather than build additional facilities of lower quality. Avoid duplication of facilities that may be provided by other agencies in the community.


Ensure sustainable maintenance and replacement of existing parkland and recreation facilities. When investing in new parks and facilities, ensure that appropriate planning considers long term maintenance and replacement needs.

Fiscal Responsibility

Ensure that department budgeting reflects efficient and organized management of capital investments, maintenance and operations spending, and staffing levels to provide necessary and desired parks and recreation services.