New to the City of Riverbank and newly selected to fill the Parks and Recreation Supervisor position is Julia Petit. She began her career with the City of Riverbank in early May and has been learning the policy and procedures as well getting to know the staff for the past few weeks.
The position was available after Kerrie Webb announced her retirement at the end of April this year after about 17 years of service to the city.
Growing up in Southern California and graduating from Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, Petit said she was looking for a place that had a small town feel and she found Riverbank. Majoring in Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Administration with a minor in Communications, the path was paved for event planning and program creations for Petit.
“I applied to a few other cities,” added Petit. “I got a really good feeling here from the people which was huge for me. I really think anywhere that I worked I just wanted to make sure I was around people that I enjoyed and for a city that does things for the community. I definitely got a feel for that when I interviewed here.”
The City offered Petit a phone interview; however, she thought it would be in her best interest to travel to Riverbank in person. That instinct served her well, as she is now settling in to her new position.
“I want to jump in and be helpful but I have to take some time and step back and learn,” stated Petit. “It has been beneficial to me to do so. Everyone has been great about teaching me about what has been going on and what is coming up and things like that. I am really excited.”
Spending time event planning on Santa Margarita Ranch, Petit was also part of creating activities to promote the outdoor adventure tourism at the historic ranch while there. She also spent some time working for the City of Atascadero.
Events like the Cheese and Wine Expo in October, the Summer Camps, and Family Fun Night on Wednesdays in July have Petit excited about her new position and looking forward to the days ahead. The summer camp activities for kids, in fact, kicked off this past week and are featured on Page A2 of this week’s issue.
Meanwhile, Family Fun Nights will be held on July 11, 18, and 25. This is the first event that Petit will be planning and she has high hopes for a waterslide, live music, and a variety of booths to bring family fun to Wednesdays in July. There will be a Bike Rodeo on July 11 at the first Family Fun Night at the Community Center Park. The event is free and families are encouraged to join the fun.
“Putting on events is something I feel really strong in,” said Petit. “I am looking to increase the promotion for the programs because there are certain programs that we have going on that are super awesome but I think sometimes getting the word out is difficult.”
Petit explained that it is important to her to create events that people want and are interested in. So she will be doing her research about the community and will be working to get an idea of what people would like to participate in to bolster community involvement and fun.