September 26, 2008

Revamped Parks Web Site Drawing Raves

By Jeanine Benca

LIVERMORE -- The park district's newly improved Web site has a host of user-friendly functions, including a key that can translate the entire site into more than 20 languages.

Livermore Area Recreation and Park District officials say the renovated site will help members of Livermore's diverse ethnic community, especially non-English speakers, have better access to current information about parks and programs.

A click from the homepage will activate Google Translate software, which almost instantly translates the site into Spanish, Chinese or another language of the user's choice.

"The board members are really excited about the site translation," said Lea Blevins, a district spokeswoman. "There are a lot of Spanish-speaking people in Livermore, but why stop at Spanish?"

In addition to the language feature, the site includes slide-out menu options for easier navigation. The more streamlined Web page also enables park district officials to post frequent updates about programs and notify the community of building closures or other issues in the parks, Blevins said.

"(The old site) had a lot of decent information, but it just wasn't as user-friendly. We as a staff didn't have the ability to update it ourselves -- we had to rely on a Webmaster," she added.

Since the site went online several weeks ago, the park district has received scores of positive feedback, according to a district news release.

Park district officials said the total cost of the Web site improvements was $18,000.

Visit the Web site at

Reach Jeanine Benca at [email protected] or 925-847- 2125.NEW LIVERMORE PARKS WEB SITE

Visit the new Livermore Area Recreation and Park District Web site at

Originally published by Jeanine Benca, Valley Times.

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