We work with both public and private citizens to care for the parks and green spaces in Syracuse.

Park of the Month

Webster’s Pond
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Members of the Syracuse Rose Society and Thornden Park Association member Miranda Hine received the Syracuse Parks Conservancy’s Guardian Award, which is given annually to an individual or organization that has shown exceptional commitment, vision, leadership and dedication to promoting and preserving the beauty of the parks and green spaces in Syracuse. Award ceremonies were on February 14 at City Hall.

Miranda Hine is cited for her efforts at maintaining some of the garden areas in the park, specifically the Lily Pond and the Madison Street entrance. Ms. Hine has also been instrumental in rallying volunteers together from the community and Syracuse University for various clean-ups over the years.

Every Wednesday morning, from April to early November, members of the Syracuse Rose Society tend to the E.M. Mills Memorial Rose Garden at Thornden Park – weeding, pruning, mulching. Their commitment is generations old, and their work has allowed the Garden to be nationally recognized and the backdrop to thousands of weddings over the years. Founded in 1911, the Syracuse Rose Society is the oldest rose society in continuous existence in the U.S. affiliated with the American Rose Society and the Canadian Rose Society.

Welcome to the Syracuse Parks Conservancy website. We thank you for stopping by. The Syracuse Parks Conservancy is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization. We are made up of a group of volunteers who serve as Trustees. We work with both public and private citizens to care for the parks and green spaces in Syracuse. Please take some time to get to know us and we hope, get involved. Neither government officials nor private citizens alone can properly care for our parks but working together, we can. Please get involved. Help make Syracuse a greener, healthier and better place to live!

Just In Time For The Holidays

Exploring Green in the ‘Cuse

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Our Mission

The mission of the Syracuse Parks Conservancy is to ensure that all Syracuse parks, public lands and the habitats therein are sustainably protected, restored, enhanced and developed for the educational, recreational and wellness uses of our citizens and their guests; we will accomplish this by directing and managing these lands and facilities in a public-private partnership with the City of Syracuse.

Our History

  • The idea for the Syracuse Parks Conservancy (SPC) began in 2008 when members from various T-N-T groups and Park Associations throughout the city began discussing the need for a citizen-based organization to coordinate activities in the parks, raise funds for needed projects/repairs/improvements, recruit volunteers for events and act as a liaison with city government.
  • Throughout 2008-09, concerned citizens continued to meet both formally and informally to develop a “blueprint’ for the organization.
  • A committee was formed to draft a Constitution and begin formal dialogues with the City of Syracuse. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was drafted. Representatives and lawyers from the City and the SPC met to finalize details.
  • Members from the SPC and Pat Driscoll, Commissioner of Parks, Recreation and Youth Programs, testified before the Common Council as to the need for this organization and how it would work with and support City government.
  • The City of Syracuse Common Council passed a resolution and then Mayor Matthew J. Driscoll signed the MOU creating a formal relationship between the City of Syracuse and the SPC.
  • In September 2009, the first Annual Meeting was held. A slate of Trustees presented by the Nominating Committee (Pat Driscoll, Chris Wiles and Mike Behnke) was put forth. Trustees and officers, all of whom have an interest in Syracuse’s parks as volunteers or professionals were elected.
  • As of 2015, trustees are:  Mike Behnke,  Neil Falcone,  Kate Hammer,   David Harding,  Kathleen Joy,  Joe Masella,  Dorothy Matthews,   George Matthews,  Paul Pflanz,   Carl Sharak,  Carol Simson,  Christopher Wiles.
  • Ex-officio trustees are:  Lazarus Sims,  Bob Dougherty.
  • Officers are President Chris Wiles, Vice President Bob Dougherty, Secretary Carl Sharak, Treasurer Paul Pflanz
  • The Board of Trustees meets at least six times a year, and our Committees meet as needed.
  • Established Committees: Environment & Ecology; Planning, Design & Preservation; Events & Tourism; Finance & Administration; Fundraising & Development; External Affairs; Volunteers; Historical, and Nominating.

You Can Help Make a Difference

There are several great opportunities for you to help the Conservancy improve and expand Syracuse parks and green spaces. Become a financial sponsor or get involved hands on by becoming a volunteer.