Candlelight Park – Royal Ave. and Throne Dr.

This week’s post is by guest writer Deborah Fike, who also did the Pacific Park post awhile back.  I’ll be adding my thoughts as well.  Here’s what she has to say:

20150609_114048

Candlelight Park is in west Eugene off Royal avenue, to the west of Beltline.  It’s a fairly big park with lots of amenities: a dog park, a playground, a basketball court, a soccer field, and a short series of trails.  Here’s the park on google maps.

There is parking all along the street on Welcome Way and Throne Drive. Parking on Throne Dr. will put you closer to the play area and dog park .  It shouldn’t be hard to find a spot unless there’s an event going on. The park is in a very nice, newer neighborhood, and all the people I have met on the park on three different trips were incredibly friendly.

IMG_1641
Melanie says: If you park near the dog park, there is a neat little community board.

When you turn on Throne Dr. from Royal Avenue, the first thing you will see is the enormous dog park.  The dog park is divided into two sections and is separated by a creek from the rest of the park (although I have never seen water in the creek).  The dog park has a lot of plastic chairs for owners to sit on and some wading pools.  Whenever we’ve gone, there are always lots of people out with their dogs, so even though I have never used this part of the park, it seems pretty popular.

Candlelight Park 3IMG_1590

Just north of the dog park is the playground:

Candlelight Park 7

For swings, we have two kid swings and one baby swing. 

Candlelight Park 4
You can also see the trash cans, bike racks, picnic tables, and a water fountain

Two bouncers and a climbing fire truck.

Candlelight Park 5

A merry-go-round.

Candlelight Park 6

IMG_1596
Melanie says: The merry-go-round seemed a lot higher compared to ones in other parks.  My almost two-year old couldn’t get on it by himself (he usually can).  Not a huge deal, but it did make me think I wouldn’t want anyone to fall off of it!

And the highlight of the park, the large climbing play structure.  For any kid who loves to climb, this thing has it all.  You can climb by a circular rope ladder and a climbing wall:

IMG_1585

IMG_1573

You can also climb up more traditional ladders, up stairs, and through a tunnel with little windows.

IMG_1579
Melanie says: My younger son always loves the wheels!

For kids with more upper body strength, you can be a monkey on this twirling hanging bars.IMG_1571

And there are slides for everyone.  A double slide for two kids to go down at once.

Candlelight Park 10

Plus the big granddaddy slide that gives you a nice twisty ride from the tallest point of the play structure.

IMG_1574

If your kids aren’t much for climbing, there’s plenty of park benches for eating and a basketball court with two hoops.

Candlelight Park 12IMG_1587

Beyond that is a very large soccer field with two nets.

Candlelight Park 13

If your kids like to go “on adventures” like mine do, there is also a short trail system that connects the back-end of the kids’ playground and the dog park together.

There’s even a cool little bridge going over the (dry) creek.

Candlelight Park 15

IMG_1577
Dry Creek Bed.

 The playground itself doesn’t have a lot of shade, though, which will make this a very hot place to be in the worst of the summer heat.

IMG_1593
Melanie says: I agree, these small trees might make good shade some day, but not yet!

 It also doesn’t have any public bathrooms, so make sure the kids go before you leave the house.

All in all, I love this park.  I often go here with my kids after a trip to the WinCo on Barger.  It offers a lot without having any sand or water features, which can be nice in the summer when you really don’t want to have to clean up after a park trip.

by Deborah Fike, a project manager and marketing professional with two young children.

Melanie Says:  I love how this park is surrounded by fields.  We aren’t a big dog family, but we were never bothered by any dogs, and it’s fun to watch them play in the designated area.

 

Royal avenue is a busy street, and it’s a bit loud, but it’s nowhere near the play area, so that was OK.

IMG_1642

We enjoyed this park too.  It’s in a nice neighborhood, has fun structures, and places to explore.  Thanks for the write-up, Deborah!

 

Advertisements

Crescent Park – 2725 Martinique Avenue

Crescent Park is in the Coburg Rd. area. Here’s the map.

Update: For those of you who read this post before 5/17/2016, I’m happy to report that the map issue I had previously talked about seems to be fixed.  Searching for Crescent Park, Crescent City Park, or nearby parks in that area no longer results in the wrong location.  (Showing a park where there is no park). The green area previously labeled “Crescent City Park” is no longer labeled.  I was able to discuss the issue with a Eugene Parks & Rec employee and submit a change to Google.  If anyone notices any prevailing issues, please let me know.  Below is a map that shows the problem as it was, and a new map.

cresent map troubles
Previous issue
park new map
Corrected as it now appears in Google maps.

The neighborhood on Martinique reminds me of the area around Gilham Park:  very nice, big houses, signs that announce the name of the community, kind of what you expect in a lot of Coburg rd. neighborhoods.

20160411_115840
The parking for this park is on the street. The traffic is moderate, but not too bad.

The layout is kind of a big oval surrounded by a path and trees.  Inside the oval is the play area and a large grassy area.

20160411_111055

The play structure has a nice variety of what you expect and some interesting details too.  It’s an easy climb for the littles to get up, but it also has some challenging bars and climbing structures.

20160411_110620

20160411_110704

The three slides give you a lot to enjoy.  Take a wide, small slide with your toddler, or go on a big bumpy slide with your preschooler.  Or just let them go on the curved slide on their own.

20160411_111037

20160411_111106

I like the big soft area at the end of this little slide (the rest of the play structure area is bark chips, which is great too).  And everyone loved the race car to the left of the little slide.

There’s also a nice little area under the play structure for pretending you have a restaurant or shop.  It’s also a chance for a little shade.

20160411_112758

One unique thing I really liked (and my preschooler did too) was the little rope bridge.

He called it an alligator pit 🙂

On one side of the pit, there are some handles to swing on.  They seem super high to me, though.  Maybe someone with older kids can chime in, but it didn’t seem like anyone who hasn’t been through a puberty growth spurt would be able to reach those.

20160411_110929sorry, no. 😦

This park has my favorite swing set-up, with the baby and kids swings side by side, and near enough to everything else to keep an eye on everyone.

20160411_112347

I have to say, though, this is another park I might warn against for toddlers who like to bolt.  My littlest was very tempted to go down the sidewalk paths to the slopes that lead right into the street.  That made me uncomfortable, but he did learn not to go on those paths.

20160411_115433

Some moms that I saw there (recognized my son from the blog!) really liked the path that leads around the play structure area for riding bikes and scooters. (Tandy Turn was another that had good pavement paths for this).

There are some nice shady benches to sit on.

20160411_111119

There are also a few trees on the other side, in the grass. Nice place for a picnic.

20160411_111028

Or you could have a picnic on the table by the basketball court.

20160411_112443
Two hoops back to back. You’ve also got your water fountains and bike rack here.

Lastly, I took a little walk all around the big grassy field.

20160411_115812

20160411_115706

20160411_115558
A pretty good place for kites and frisbees

This is a nice park, although it does get a bit hot since the shade is mostly around the edges. I know we’ll visit again since my son loved his “alligator pit” so much.  There have also been a lot of kids there when we have visited; it’s not an isolated or lonely park.

One more thing to think about: When we visited, I got to talk to a mom whose son who has a severe peanut allergy.  I didn’t even know that a child who has eaten a peanut butter sandwich and plays on the structures, can leave enough peanut residue behind to put her son in serious danger.  It’s something to think about when you are packing a lunch for the park, that we all have a right to share.  Now we’ll save our peanut butter for days when we aren’t going to the park to play.

Thanks for visiting and feel free to check out my other endeavor below. 🙂

etsy

Filbert Meadows Park – Hyacinth St. and Naismith Blvd.

Filbert Meadows is another North Eugene area park, kind of in between Arrowhead park and Awbrey park.  I has a nice neighborhood feel that reminds me of Brewer park; drive up street parking, lots of plants and trees, and beautiful tiles speckled throughout the pathways.  Here is the map link.

20150924_120939
Accessible parking, beautiful fence and foliage

 

IMG_0900
Lots of neighbors walking through with their dogs, so I’m glad there’s a little dog baggie station 🙂

20150924_120924

The tile mosaics in Filbert Meadows are a fun little “seek and find” game.  We had fun running around to find them all.  They aren’t really hidden, per se, but it’s a nice little diversion just the same. Here’s one!

IMG_0889

On the right side is the sandy play area. I like the big rocks, they remind me of a Japanese Rock Garden, and my son really liked climbing them.

20150924_120742There are a few bike racks back there and trashes around the park, but no bathrooms.

And on the left is our play structure over the bark chips.

20150924_120611

See Saw

20150924_120752

A car to play on and 3 spinny things!

20150924_12064020150924_120543

The swing set up is two kid swings and one baby swing, which I’ve mentioned before is not my favorite (when we go to parks with friends it’s nice for two little kiddos to swing at the same time; nice for the kiddos and the moms!)

20150924_120555

For the most part I like the play structure. There are a lot different choices for climbing and swinging.

What I don’t like, and is a common problem with play structures, is that the two main areas on the play structure are separated by the red climbing web. IMG_0838

My little one can’t cross that or climb the verticle climbing wall, and thus can’t get to some of the fun parts of this structure. So, I have to awkwardly help him up there just so he can spin the little wheel, which is generally something for a toddler.

On a lighter note, this is the first park I’ve been to where the speakers worked (the ones where you can talk to each other from across the play structure), so that was neat. It also has a little ledge below for playing restaurant or store.

20150924_122606

Hey, look at that! There’s a little filbert! AKA hazelnut.  Filbert Meadows actually has a little old filbert orchard full of beautiful filbert trees. Did you know that Oregon produces 99% of the U.S. hazelnut crop?20150924_12213320150924_120623

There are some picnic tables speckled in there. Oh, it looks like such a nice place for a picnic.  There are also some nice shady picnic tables near the basketball field.

And the water fountains there too.

That brings us to the field area, which is very pretty and has some paths to explore.  There’s also a large hill to climb.

IMG_0881IMG_085720150924_12112420150924_120834We like this park.  I love the unique features like the filbert trees, the meadow, the big rocks in the sand, and the tiles.  Try it out some time soon as the weather starts getting nicer.

Feel free to check out my other endeavor on Etsy.  Thanks for stopping by!

 

Oakmont Park – 2295 Oakmont Way

Oakmont park is right across from the Oakway Center Mall on Oakmont Way. Here’s the map.

I think that’s kind of the best thing about this park.  Grab a coffee at Starbucks, browse Old Navy, then stroll over to the park to let kids blow off steam.  Then you can head back to the mall for a potty break any time.  It’s a busy area, but that means a lot of people and company for your outing.  The crosswalks are well marked, and there’s parking on the street by the park if you don’t need to visit the mall.
20151102_101735

This park has wood chips under the taller play structure.  Here’s the nice rock-wall.

20151102_101601

Then we have our large sandy area with the smaller structures; bouncers, a little car (complete with two steering wheels which, while impractical for real cars, is advantageous for play cars with two or more drivers).  Lots of picnic tables and benches too.

20151102_101706

The raised, soft walkway separates the sand and bark chip areas.  It’s a little hard to navigate for new walkers, but they figure it out.

20151102_101614

I love this little house in the sandy area.  It’s a nice place to retreat to if it starts to rain.  It can also be a castle, restaurant, or cave, if needed.

20151102_101645

I haven’t actually been here when this water area is on and working, so perhaps we will revisit this park later.  If you have some feedback on the water area, comment below! Aren’t those mosaic animals beautiful, though?

There is a large field and paths to explore that lead to other neighborhoods.  A basketball hoop, water fountain (not on in the winter), trash can, and bike racks.  There’s also a quaint little hill for contemplating life and watching the construction at the Mall.

20151102_10113320151102_101256

One path leads to Frontier dr.

20151102_101235

And the other leads to Bedford Way.

So, I do like this park a lot, but there are some things about the play structure that I should mention.  First of all, it’s not a great set-up.  The things that the littlest kids will like the best are harder to get to, like the car wheel that’s at the very top of the structure

20151102_101850

…or the smaller slide that’s not easy to get to either. You have to go across this bridge:

20151102_101748

Now, I’m not opposed to challenging my kids.  I consider myself a pretty “free-range” parent and I like to let my kids explore on their own.  But, that being said, I think some kid has fallen off this thing every time we’ve been there.  It’s Eugene, it’s wet, there’s only a hand rail on one side.  I’m not opposed to the occasional cut or scrape, but I don’t actually want my kids to fall all the time. Same goes with the bouncy bridge:

20151102_104123

There’s such a huge gap between the railing and the bridge, I’ve seen kids fall off this one too.  The metal is slippery, unlike some of the wooden bridges at other parks.  My little 18 month old wants to go across this and it’s a little scary.  But I can’t blame him because all the stuff he wants to do is across these bridges!
So, not my favorite play structure. (By Game Time, btw, if you’re keeping score)
20151102_101754

There are a few other neat things

A steep tunnel, some unique monkey bars and a wavy mirror to name a few.

There is a spinny thing:
20160118_102705

I don’t know what those are called, if you know, please comment below.  Anyway, this one is a bit taller than usual, which is either more fun, or harder to use depending on your child.  There’s also a baby swing and kid swing.  So, if you’re kids are big on swings, this is not the park for that.

All in all, I like this park and I’ll continue to visit it, in spite of the high fall ratio.  I guess that’s just the kind of mom I am.

 

 

Berkeley Park – 3629 W. 14th Avenue

20151002_105342

Berkeley Park is a quiet park off West 11th in Eugene.  Here is a link to the google maps result:

http://tinyurl.com/pdvku5t

There’s a little side street that you can park on, it also has a little free library:

20151002_105259
Take a book, leave a book!

Find out more about little free libraries here: http://littlefreelibrary.org/

When we visited the park was sand, but as I’ve mentioned before here, most parks with sand are being converted to bark chips because it’s safer to fall on.  So, keep us posted, followers, and let us know when you see this or any park has been converted.

This park is surrounded by a calm field with little dirt foot paths.

20151002_110416
and there’s your trash can.

20151002_110425

The basketball court is a bit off from the park area and when we were there my kids found a basketball and had a blast playing with it.  We left it behind in hopes that other kids will keep it here for all to use.

20151002_105443
Way back there!

20151002_105550We’ve got our swings, two baby, two kid.

20151002_110107 Nice little metal structure with a little slide and a big slide.

20151002_110116 I like that bouncy thing on the left and the little “shop window” on the right.

Another unique feature is this giant climbing structure:

20151002_110050

You can also see the street and quiet neighborhood behind the structure.  The street is pretty close, but it is not busy at all, so you might not want to bring a little kid that loves running out in the street, but most will be alright.  I like that the neighborhood is pretty close, it makes me feel safe in a park like this.  It feels like people are nearby, which is important to a mom on an outing alone with her kids.  While we were there a few people came to play with their dogs in the field, but the few times we’ve been here we haven’t found many families to play with, so it’s a bit deserted, or private, depending on your tastes.

I like this weird little bridge:

20151002_110125

Another little structure to climb

20151002_110143

My favorite thing here is the slide!

20151002_105643

It looks old and rusty.  Just a beautiful example of sturdy, American made, classic play equipment.  It’s very tall and the metal is a bit dented.  It looked perfectly safe, so I hope they don’t decide to replace it.

No water fountains or bathrooms here.  It’s a pleasant park to check out if you’re in the area, but I wouldn’t say it’s one I’d go out of my way for.  It’s in the W. 11th area, which is not my favorite area of town, a lot of that having to do with W. 11th traffic.  But, like I said, some neat structures and a wonderful old slide!

Thanks for reading!

Feel free to check out my other endeavor: my Etsy shop 🙂

Brewer Park – 1820 Brewer Ln

20150910_114153

Head down Brewer Ln. between Norkenzie and Gilham to find Brewer Park; this nice little neighborhood park.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Brewer+Park/@44.0855711,-123.0869286,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m2!3m1!1s0x54c0e2126a1d5fc3:0x1476d9dbe078095c

Parking is on the street, but since it’s not on a cross-street, it isn’t too busy and there’s an accessible (disabled/wheelchair parking permit) parking spot as well. Walking into the park, you’re greeted by a nice little mosaic.

20150910_114138

Hey look, I made the picture bigger!  I’m learning.  I’m definitely a novice blogger 🙂

There are also little mosaics speckled throughout the paths in the park, some by kids, some by more experienced artists.  They’re cute; check them out.

20150910_11160920150910_114103

Now to the play structures:

20150910_11124820150910_111344

They have a mix of the same-old stuff and some unique items.  I haven’t seen this kind of bouncer in many parks, and I haven’t seen any other circular monkey bars like these.

20150910_111455 20150910_111410

We like the shiny tunnel and baby likes crawling up the safely enclosed stairs.

20150910_113450 20150910_113206

Bouncer/see-saw and 2×1 swings, or 2 kid and 1 baby swing set-up. You can also see lots of benches, tables, and bike racks hiding in these pictures.

20150910_111537 20150910_111506

The park was pretty shady, but when we were there the sun was still partly behind a very tall tree.  However, even when the sun passed the tree, there was still a fair amount of shade.

20150910_113153

20150910_111721 Trashes and water, but no bathrooms here.  There were a lot of people passing through on bikes and walking dogs, with some people stopping to play.  I like a park that isn’t deserted.

Moving further along, there’s a field with trees and a path and a basketball court.  We didn’t go down the path this time (recuperating ankle), but it appears to lead to a street on the other side called Margaret St.

20150910_111322 20150910_111705

I liked this park; with its nice, central location and a fair amount of trees.  I’ll definitely visit it again.

When I do a post for any park, I always go to the main government page.  Usually there’s just one picture that doesn’t show too much about the park (why I’m doing this blog in the first place).  With Brewer Park, the picture looks nothing like the way the park looks now.  It’s obviously a picture before the park was renovated.  I have to say, I’m sad to see the changes.  The merry-go-round is gone and the structure used to be made of wood and metal.  I’ll miss those old play structures from my childhood.  I wonder if we are missing out on something by getting rid of those classic play structures, but I guess old things need to be replaced eventually.