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About The Conference / 2017 Soaring to New Heights

As the premier state conference for parks and recreation, forest preserves and conservation agencies in Illinois, the IAPD/IPRA Soaring to New Heights conference brings together more than 4,400 professionals and elected officials for three exciting days of quality educational programming, networking and professional development.  Featuring 16 pre-conference workshops, over 150 educational sessions, and an exhibit hall where more than 325 exhibitors showcase their latest and greatest products and services, the 2017 conference is THE place to be!  Mark your calendars now and plan to join us at the Hilton Chicago next January for this exceptional event!


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2017 Conference Sponsors / Thank You For Your Support!

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2017 Conference Program / Click the Button to Download!

2017 Final Program

Keynote Speaker / Steve Gilliland

Saturday, January 21, 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Grand Ballroom, Second Floor

Enjoy The Ride™

A blueprint for getting the most out of life, Enjoy The Ride™ is a hilarious and brilliantly conceived keynote that causes people to examine where they are personally and professionally. It lifts people up and inspires them to evolve and appreciate, rather than simply maintain and exist.

When you Enjoy The Ride™, you will learn to:

  • Check Your Passion: Love what you do; never forget why you do it.
  • Cure Your Destination Disease: Live more for today, less for tomorrow & never about yesterday.
  • Refocus Your Attention: Decide what’s important & never take it for granted.


If you want to achieve true success and fulfillment, you must first discover an enthusiasm for your work and personal life. Decide where you are heading, get on the bus, choose the right seat and Enjoy The Ride™!

Event Location

Hilton Chicago
720 S. Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605
Phone: 312.922.4400

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