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Anna Sierra, Jasper, Marlee and Sophie Play on Bike RacksFunky bike racks make a great addition to any park.
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Marlee JumpingAnother funky feature in a great park reno.
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Kids at the ParkMaking frozen mud pies.
Several parks in our neighbourhood have seen major renovations this year. I'm delighted to report that fun and functional bike racks are an integral part of the renovations. I love arriving at my destination -- be it a park, a library, a transit stop, a school, a grocery store, a coffee shop, a doctor's office, city hall or anywhere else I happen to be going -- and know exactly where I can park my bike. It makes me feel like cyclists are invited to the party.
The kids and I certainly appreciate these new bike racks at Parkdale Park, located right beside the Parkdale Farmers' Market. We love that they are bright orange, located at both of the park's entrances and so much fun to play on when they are not being used by cyclists.
Can you see the big orange concrete balls scattered about the park, behind the kids? These are another new park feature and are also great fun for the whole community. Toddlers try to roll the balls. Adults sit on the balls. Kids play tag around the balls or leap frog over them. Over the weekend we had the pleasure of hosting cousin Marlee and cousin Sophie. All four kids played for hours on the balls, the bike racks and in the still half-frozen sand.
Conventional play equipment is fine. But something a little different and a little innovative turns a park into a destination.
Two of the parks in our neighbourhood have been renovated with extensive community consultations and an eye to park parties and performances. Parkdale Park has a permanent covered stage that can be used for community performances, or impromptu kids' plays and will come in handy for special events including ArtsPark on May 28th, when local musicians will perform all day.
Hintonburg Park is another local park that has undergone major renovations. One of the fun new features are strategically placed electrical outlets for speakers in its reconstructed stone wall. Now when puppet troupes perform we won't have to run extension cords from the community centre.
Well used parks are neighbourhood hubs. When a neighbourhood park includes great bike parking, the whole community benefits. And kids who play in parks like these grow up expecting superb cycling infrastructure at all their destinations.