Parks & Recreation Commission

Parks and Recreation Commission Regular Meetings

Agendas & Minutes

Agendas are available prior to the meetings. Minutes are available following approval.

View Most Recent Agenda | View All Agendas and Minutes


The Parks and Recreation Commission is appointed by City Council to ensure recreational programs and opportunities are afforded all citizens, by encouraging public-private partnerships between the City, local businesses, organizations, neighborhoods, Washtenaw County, and neighboring townships and by encouraging volunteerism. The goal of the Parks and Recreation Commission is to seek sustainable alternatives and methods for making recreational programming available to the citizens of the City of Ypsilanti.

If you are interested in serving on the Commission, please fill out our online interest form. For more information please see the job duties factsheet.
Term length for Commissioners is 3 years.


Member Seat Term
Ben Connor-Barrie Vice Chair Mar 2017 - Jul 1 2023
Cathy Thorburn Secretary Jun 2010 - Jul 1 2026
Brian Merlos Chair Oct 2021 - Jul 1 2024
Dillon Navarre   May 2019 - Jul 1 2025
Vacant   to end Jul 1 2024
Vacant   to end Jul 1 2024
Tarik Fermin Youth Member to end Jul 1 2023
Lola Malmer Youth Member to end Jul 1 2023
Vacant - youth    


Events & Programs

Ypsi Fall River Day, Sunday, September 24, 2023

Huron River Paddle Trips From Frog Island Park

Enjoy fall on the Huron River at Ypsi Fall River Day at Frog Island Park, Sunday, September 24th, Noon-3pm. There will be  kayak trips and family-friendly activities including an educational program on river wildlife. Ypsi Fall River Day is hosted by the City of Ypsilanti Parks & Recreation Commission.

Paddle the river as it winds through Ypsilanti into Ford Lake—perfect for beginner and experienced kayakers alike—single and two person kayaks and transportation back to the start point. Launch from Frog Island Park anytime between 12-3pm. Catch the shuttle back to the park from a designated downstream takeout on the hour until 4pm. Walk up registration only. A limited number of kayaks available first come, first served.

There will be a “Hunters of the Sky” presentation from the Leslie Science & Nature Center at 1pm and an educational program on river wildlife by the Huron Clinton Metroparks Mobile Learning Center. Other exhibitors include the Huron River Watershed Council, Fowling Warehouse Ypsi Ann Arbor, the Huron Waterloo Pathways Initiative/Border to Border Trail, Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation, the Washtenaw County Water Resources Commissioner's Office, the Ypsilanti District Library and the Ypsilanti Township Recreation Department.

If you are interested in being an vendor/exhibitor at Fall River Day, please complete the vendor/exhibitor interest form

  1. Adopt-A-Park Program
  2. Parks & Facilities
  3. Recreation Programs
  4. Pavilion Rentals
  5. Recreation Facility Rentals
  6. Partnerships & Promotions

Park Special Events

View the Calendar of Public Events here!

Communications & Contact Info

To stay to up to date on parks and recreation events, programs, and park amenities, like City of Ypsilanti Parks and Recreation on Facebook

Questions or comments, contact the Parks & Recreation Commission at:

Professional Certification

The Parks & Recreation Commission is proud to have member(s) of the Commission that are Certified Parks & Recreation Professional’s. The Certified Park and Recreation Professional (CPRP) certification is the national standard for all parks and recreation professionals who want to be at the forefront of the profession. Attaining the CPRP designation shows that those professionals have met education and experience qualifications, and illustrates their commitment to the profession as well as their knowledge and understanding of key concepts within parks and recreation. 

CPRP - Badge Opens in new window