For most of us, a day at the park means a picnic with family, live music, or a Friday night movie on the lawn.

For UNC Greensboro’s Dr. Benjamin Hickerson, it means data collection, critical analysis, and an exploration of the role of parks in communities.

Hickerson, an associate professor in UNC Greensboro’s Department of Community and Therapeutic Recreation, has spent more than 15 years researching a variety of recreation environments, from parks to video games. Since 2014, he and colleagues at Penn State and Penn State Abington have been focused on three parks in Philadelphia: Fairmount Park (the third largest urban park in the United States), Bartram’s Garden, and the Rail Park.

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Originally published July 24, 2019.