Children and Civic Park 25.2.2011

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Take a child to a park and s/he’ll have a good time with or without something that screams ‘Play Area’ but it’s always seemed a shame to me that there’s no beautiful play equipment in our CBD park. This means the poor dracaenas cop it from kids climbing on them – mine are as guilty as everyone else’s – because there’s nothing else to use.

I was incredibly jealous of the Victorian parks I went to a decade or so ago because they all seemed to have play equipment that looked more like public art. Some of the installations had been funded by the private sector – hello BHP: wondering what to do with that 75% increase in profit last year? CRINGE NCIG could make up for some of the visual (and other) pollution they’re responsible for on Kooragang.

It’s been great to see new public art that could double as an area for children to play at Honeysuckle. The Draft Laman Street Civic Park Design Framework makes tiny mentions of both public art and play areas and I’d love to see them combined.

Imagine something like the giant head sculpture outside St Eustache in Paris or the Alice in Wonderland sculpture in Central Park.

We have canon for kids to crawl all over in Gregson Park in Hamilton (there’s an article about reinstallation of these canon on new mounts a few years ago here).

Mt Tomah Botanic Gardens is planning new children’s gardens, each with their own sculpture. 

While I was reading about This Stuff I found a reference to the Denver Art Museum which is free to children under 5 (of course, our gallery so far is free to everyone) and kids are supplied with an art backpack on arrival and visitors are encouraged to look out for the ‘Hotspot icon’ that directs them to family friendly activities. And there’s an area where children can play and scribble and Touch Stuff. (Our gallery has a lovely kids’ activity on Saturday mornings. Congrats for that.)

And in news from twitter this week:

Seattle has tracked its trash and found that recycling works; it’s an interesting short read about how far things travel.

And the Mayor of New York has banned smoking in parks and at the beach. It seems to have worked beautifully here so should there too.

And in Newcastle this week there was a rail forum  where huge amounts of money were mentioned.

And there were lots of good reads about the downside of coal in the Herald this week – one of which is this editorial. Home

More dangerous tree images: imagine this bunya nut falling from a tree onto your head. This photo was taken in a Hunter Valley park.

 

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