Crestwood Park in Coquitlam

Location: 907 Crestwood Dr, Coquitlam, BC V3J 5S5

 

Parking available: on the street

The beautiful summer days are gone! And there are not coming back soon, but nonetheless, this is a quick glimpse into another cute park we ran into close to home.

Crestwood park is an attractive green space with a playground, half basketball court, pathway through the park and spacious grass area for relaxing or casual play, as would the City describe it.

It has a newly renovated play area, again same theme as in other parks in Coquitlam, extremely attractive and ready for toddlers of certain ages. We spent an afternoon climbing, having a picnic, staring around, playing with the wood chips an of course trying out the amusements.

Here are some pictures. The small park is a nice place to spend your afternoon, in a quiet neighbourhood, with lots of trees and green space.

That is it! I hope you enjoyed this post!

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Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Laity pumpkin patch Maple Ridge

Location:

North- 21145 128th Avenue Maple Ridge, BC V4R 2R9

South- 12725 Laity Street Maple Ridge, BC V4R 2P2

Cost: $5

 

I know we are a bit late with this one, but we still need to add to the list so here it is. This year  we had a lot of ‘firsts’ and the pumpkin farm was no exception. We decided to check Laity pumpkin patch in Maple Ridge (which of course it is closed for the season). It is the biggest in Tricities and beyond, at least as far as we know.

We went there on a Saturday morning, thinking it might not be too crowded, but I think that is what every family with small children thought and so it wasn’t packed but it was quite the crowd.

They have too location, south and north, depending on your child’s age. Each location has different entertainment option so you choose which one fits you and your child of course. We went to check the one for children under 5. They had an animal farm, lots of wooden amusements and cars outside that the kids could ride, tractor ride and of course looots of pumpkins. The patch looked awesome, if you could only get into one area that wasn’t too populated, you could have taken very nice pictures.

But you know what it is like to go out with two small children, at some point diapers need to be changed, naps to be taken and soon we left, eager to see what the remaining of the day had in stock for us.

And one more thing, bring an extra set of cloths, the pumpkins are wet in the morning.

Here are some pictures and the link to the farm.

See you next time!

I hope you enjoyed this post!

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Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Playground at Central City Surrey

Location: 10153 King George Blvd, Surrey, BC V3T 2W1

Cost: free

When: depending on the mall hours

Parking available: yes

A few days ago we decided to check the indoor playground at Central City in Surrey. We were in the area so we stopped by a bit, with the rain and all, we have less and less outdoor options.

First thing busy parking outside, we parked on the first available spot. The mall is not very big but it is crowded. Once we entered, so it happened we ran into their indoor playground, which of course was very crowded as well. Lots of kids and unfortunately lots of kids that were clearly too old for that playground, accompanied by their parents made the experience not so pleasant. Hubby decided to be the playmate for Astrid this time, let himself guided thru the maze.

They hardly tried any of the options, there were kids everywhere. Some of them monopolizing some of the toys, making it difficult for anyone else to play.

Second, you know how I mentioned these playgrounds require that you wear sock? Well, noone was and those who weren’t barefoot, were not wearing socks, but shoes, parents too.

We didn’t spend too much time there and headed out. My daughter didn’t really enjoy and neither did we.

See you next time!

 

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

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Sorina

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Coquitlam Public Library

Location: Coquitlam Public Library

Poirier Branch 575 Poirier Street Coquitlam, BC V3J 6A9
City Centre Branch 1169 Pinetree Way Coquitlam, BC V3B 0Y1

Cost: free

When: depending on the library schedule

Parking available: yes

One of the obvious places you can go is of course the library. Very multidisciplinary, the libraries are extremely popular, they are full of people all the time. The variety of books they offer is huge, and depending of what you want, to read something onsite, borrow, google something, they have it all. It is amazing, I am always happy to be able to access such places nowadays, but it’s quite interesting to see how libraries have adapted to keep up with the trends in technology. It might not seem much, but back in my home town as a kid in Romania we didn’t have this kind of library, so I am enjoying it as much as possible. And of course, I am happy to take my kids too and enjoy some reading, or some walks around.

When we first moved to BC we used to go to VPL (Vancouver Public Library), but since we are now in Tricities, Coquitlam Public Library is the closest one for us, Poirier or City Centre, either one works.

Today we went to the branch on Pinetree, that is where we usually go, except for when all the board books are gone, yes, sometimes all the baby books are gone, or almost all gone. When that happens, to check the Poirier branch. Once we get there, Astrid helps me check the books in. She is fascinated by the green/ red light that let you know when you can place the book in order to be taken away.

Then we go pick up some new books, and if we can’t find anything we like, we ask the lady at the reception to check if there are any returned / checked in but not available yet for the public. Usually, there will be some so we select a few from there as well.

Once that’s done, we check the books out and we continue walking around in the library, reading a story or two, having a snack of course, we never say no to a snack; we might play in the children’ area, make a friend or two, and then we head out.

Libraries also offer baby time/ story time/ mother goose all through the year. It’s basically 30-45 min of songs and stories. We used to go to another library when Astrid was little and when she used to stay still, for baby time, and I know both Poirier and City Centre branches offer such classes, you simply need to check their website. They have different timelines depending on the season.

That is it for now!

I hope you enjoyed this post!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Mommy look what I found!

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Lots of traffic….

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These steps are easy to follow 😀

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Never say no to a snack 😛

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Snack with grandma of course

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I am hiding, can you see me?

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Gotcha!

Strong Start Riverview School District 43 in Coquitlam

Program: Strong Start

Location: various schools in BC

Cost: free, parent participation required

When: mornings or afternoons, depending on the school

Parking available: yes, limited

This is probably the most complete program for 0-5 years olds that exists at the moment and it is completely free. It is more of a 360 program and I will explain why. It requires parent/ caretaker participation.

The program runs in the morning from 8:45am to 11:45am or in the afternoon, depending on the school you go to. Some schools offer it in the morning, some in the afternoon. Here’s a schedule that I found, some may have changed, it’s been a while since I found this, actually it was handed to me by a representative some time ago.

It starts with a 1h 30 m of free play, then they do clean up and head out to the gym, 15 minutes later, they come back for snack and then circle time. There are a large variety of toys and activities, every day is different, and entertaining. My daughter goes here almost daily, and she is never bored, neither am I, just by watching her. You get to network with the other parents as well.

The only downsize I see is that there are kids of different ages so sometimes the older ones will take the toys from the little ones, or some toys are not suitable for all children and so on. But the parent is there to watch the child. There is of course a coordinator as well, that makes sure things happen as they should; Jennifer Benoit is this person at Riverview Elementary and she is very nice, and helpful, my daughter loves her very much. She is definitely a good influence on her.

There is a washroom, for children mainly of course.

That’s it for now!

I hope you enjoyed this post!

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Sorina

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Town Centre Park and Lafarge Lake in Coquitlam

Location: 1299 Pinetree Way, Coquitlam, BC

Parking available: yes

Probably one of the biggest parks in Tricities, Town Centre Park and Lafarge Lake in Coquitlam together are definitely a good option to spend time outdoor with the family.

There is a generous playground, with sand pits, water/ spray park for the summer, the playground offers a large variety of play stations for different age groups. My daughter is now 20 months, and every time we go there she wants to climb up to the big kids slide, but none of the options given is something she can use, as she still too young to climb something other than stairs; so you get to the point that they were designed a certain way, so that kids of certain age to not access them.

The challenging part is that sometimes it can get pretty busy, popular place so expect it to be full from time to time. Especially during summer, when the water park is open, it really feels busy, crowded, everyone trying to find a spot in the shade.

My daughter started walking only in August, close to the end of the season so we didn’t spend too much time at the water parks, but we tried it a few times and it is quite fun for kids and adults as well. Who wouldn’t want to cool off a bit when the temperature reaches 30 degrees!!! We ended up leaving the place soaking wet, and learned our lesson for the next time and mommy made sure we had the right equipment with us.

Apart from that, we enjoy nice long walks in the park, watching the ducks, avoiding feeding them; what is odd about it is that there is a big sign saying not to feed them, and yet a lot of the passers-by feed them.

You can jog, run, enjoy a picnic, good weather and a mountains or urban scenery!

Plenty of parking and washroom available, so go check it out and I will see you around!

I hope you enjoyed this post!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Salmon come home in Coquitlam

Location: Hoy Creek Hatchery – located on Hoy Creek Trail Linear Park, west of the City Centre Aquatic Complex at the corner of Pinetree and Guildford Way

Program cost: free

This rain or shine event took place on October 22nd in Coquitlam, more precisely in Hoy Creek.  Usually it is on the 3rd Sunday in October. The annual Salmon Come Home event co-hosted with the City of Coquitlam Municipality celebrates the return of the salmon to Hoy Creek. The free family event run from 11 a.m. through to 3 p.m. at the Hoy Creek Hatchery.

You can watch spawning chum salmon in stream (see pictures below), learn about the Hoy Creek Hatchery, view live salmon demonstrations, and enjoy musical entertainment, interactive children’s activities, food, and educational exhibits. It’s true we arrived closer to 3 p.m., but we got to see pretty much everything. It was our first year and we enjoyed it a lot. Next year we will go earlier for sure.

It rained a bit, but we wouldn’t let rain ruin our mood, after all, we need to embrace it right?

We parked at Douglas College. The trail has several entrances, and of course it is one place you can visit any time of the year, not just now. Click here for more information.

Surrounded by condos and shopping malls, the coho population is returning year after year to this forested stream, in the middle of an urban area. We learned that a lot of work is being done to maintain this unusual habitat from being contaminated, the traffic around the area means there is garbage left behind, invasive plants are a constant battle and even garden waste being dumped. A lot of volunteers help make that happen.

We learned about the salmon life cycle and lots of interesting information. For example, there are 5000 to 10000 salmon in this rearing pond only. There is also a Leave Home Festival, that happens in May, when fish are released.

Also, the salmon (Coho) swim out to the ocean and return to this creek to spawn in 18 months.

Walking on the trail we could actually see the salmon spawn, they rub their tail on the rocks in the water, which is of course very interesting to see. All in all, a pleasant family event,  a nice location and very very informative!

I hope you enjoyed this post!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Panorama Park in Deep Cove

Location: Panorama Dr, North Vancouver, BC V7G 1L2

Parking available: yes limited; the area is full of tourists, and parking is not easy to find. Street parking available as well.

The first time we went to Deep Cove was to have the doughnuts, the famous doughnuts, I didn’t really imagine the potential there is, but the area is gorgeous and it is worth visiting, with or without doughnuts.

Walking around, after having the doughnuts, we run into this little playground, full of kids. It was amazing, the children were amazing, playing around, so Astrid jumped in and gave it a try. A slide, some climbing structures, actually quite a few and wood chips everywhere. A bit rusty here and there, but it did the job. The kid was happy, well entertained, so objective achieved.

The area is famous for beautiful hiking trails, so you can do that if you want.  We did that the first time we went there, we didn’t have any children back then, now with the little ones, it is a bit of a challenge but we will do it again when they’re older. The view was gorgeous. Even if you don’t hike, the whole area is nice. Also, you can choose to rent a kayak, lots of people were doing that when we went last time, and the weather was nice and it was worth it.

Washrooms are available close-by and like I mentioned parking can be a pain, yet don’t get discouraged.

I hope you enjoyed this post and like always, happy playing around!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Rocky Point Park in Port Moody

Location: 2800 Murray St, Port Moody, BC V3H 1X2

Parking available: yes, limited and it can be a pain sometimes to find a spot

This is actually the first park I’ve been to when we moved to the Tricities area. I had just had my daughter and we were off from a breastfeeding discussion when we stopped at the park. It was April and it was raining and the park was empty and beautiful. And I said to myself, if this park looks gorgeous when it’s raining and cold, imagine when it’s sunny. We continued going there and we love it. It is one of the most popular parks in the area and it’s definitely worth going there.

Huge playground, for different age groups, generous trails if you want to hike and simply stroll, forest all around, gorgeous scenery, picnic areas, this park has a lot to offer. I tried to capture as much as I could in my pictures, there is so much you can do. In the summer we used to stroll all the way from Port Moody library, which is next to the same forest connecting Rocky Point Park. The walk is beautiful, not too long but not too short either.

Except of course for when the bear season is on.

Washrooms are available, there is also the famous Rocky Point ice cream and if you like, you can rent a kayak, when the season is open. Don’t worry about the ice cream, that one is open all-year long.

Go there, it’s worth it!

I hope you enjoyed this post and like always, happy playing!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

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Lions Park in Port Coquitlam

Location: 2300 Lions Way, Port Coquitlam, BC

Parking available: yes

Another park worth checking out is Lions park in Port Coquitlam. No matter the age of your toddler, there is something to do for sure. The play structures offer a variety of options designed for children of all ages, interests and abilities. From swings to climbing structures, slides, water park and a generous sand pit, this park has it all. There is a rubberized surface too and a colourful theme that kids enjoy. They can try zip line and run around the generous playground area.

Located next to the Coquitlam River, you and your baby/ toddler can enjoy  a walk in the park along the river, go up to Dairy Queen on Shaughnessy Street for an ice cream and head back to the park, at least that is what we do most of the time. There is a lot forested space, if you enjoy that and you can even sun tan in the summer.

Washroom available and a covered picnic shelter that you can rent. I find that it has an easy access, there are a lot of shops around if you want to do your groceries.

It also features a section of the Traboulay Poco Trail, which you can enjoy from Gates Park.

We are heading there this afternoon! See you there!

I hope you enjoyed this post and like always, happy playing!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Bear in the area

This bear thing is new to me. Where I am from, we didn’t really have any around. Originally I am from a small town in Romania with absolutely no bear activity.
That sounds like danger. And it’s what we go through during the summer season when the bears start to wonder around. We have two little parks aka forests nearby and a simply walk in the park can turn into a saying hi to a bear (Mundy park and Riverview Forest).
This sign is everywhere and when you need to stroll with your baby daily, it becomes something you need to pay attention to. My mom is visiting from abroad and she takes Astrid out for walks daily. And the other day, when I happened to be with them, a man on his bike stopped and told us there was a bear 50 m behind us – we were on a sidewalk next to Mundy park, so we hurried to avoid the area and put some distance between us and the bear. We walked fast down the street and disappeared on one of the streets, getting as far as possible from there.

But what do you do when you meet the bear? What would have my mom done, as she doesn’t even speak English, therefore wouldn’t have understood the man telling her to watch out? Exactly. Now, apparently when you run into a bear, first thing to NOT do is run. Stay or walk backwards slowly, trying to appear big in front of the bear.

So here is my 2nd story, which this time involves an actual bear and answered my above mentioned question. One Saturday morning we went to Alouette park, which is close to Mundy park and we took Astrid for a swing. Me, 40 weeks pregnant and ready to pop, I was sitting on a bench, the only bench that park has and notice a bear crossing the street and coming towards my bench. It was obviously looking for food, sniffing around. And what do i do? Scream at my husband to grab our daughter and leave the park. At the same time, I start running, or more of a fast pacing, I couldn’t really run, given the advance pregnancy status I was in and join my husband in leaving the park.

We left the stroller behind and took a detour, came back, took the stroller and headed home. And that was it. So my immediate reaction was to run, despite the warning.

And that answers my question.

Check these articles below. More on what actions to take:

https://www.portcoquitlam.ca/city-services/pets-wildlife/bear-safety/

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/how-to-survive-a-black-bear-encounter-1.2718756

Be bear aware!

Sorina

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Keswick Park in Burnaby

Location: 9452 Cardston Ct, Burnaby, BC V3N 4R6

Parking available: there is parking available on the street

I know, I said Tricities, and yet I crossed the border and ended up in Burnaby. Just kidding. Close to Lougheed mall, where we go often, as it is close to our place in Coquitlam, you can find Keswick Park, a spray park and outdoor playground, with a lot to offer for kids of different age groups.

Several slides that appeal to kids of different ages, tunnels, climbing structures, lots of room to run around, swings, all there for your little one to enjoy. The place is great overall, worth stopping by for sure, if you’re in the area. There is a sand pit and wood chips available, as you’ve noticed, my daughter simply loves playing with the wood chips, even when it’s wet.

The playground is next to a tiny hiking zone, if interested, I remember one time i actually took the stroller on those paths, which turned out quite a workout. I only had one baby back then, but still, not a very wise decision.

If you enjoy basketball, there is a court available too. With decent amount of seating area, washrooms, green space and a generous playground, a picnic is a good option too. It is very close to the main road and the Lougheed Skytrain, which makes it pretty noisy, but still a nice urban park to consider taking your little one.

I hope you enjoyed this post and like always, happy playing!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Simply loving the wood chips

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Lougheed mall indoor playground in Burnaby

Program: free indoor playground

Location: 106- 9855 Austin Ave, Burnaby, BC V3J 1N4

When: daily, depending on the mall hours

Parking available: yes

Lougheed Mall offers two indoor playgrounds, one for 1-5 year olds, and one for 5-12 year olds. We’ve only checked out the first one, as my daughter is 18 months, but we’ve watched kids play in the other one and it definitely looks like a lot of fun. The children can enjoy a lot of climbing structures and slides, and the whole playground encourages the children to move a lot, have a lot of coordination and strength.

The playground for the little ones is not very spacious, it is actually quite small, compared to the Coquitlam indoor playground, and it has built-in wall games and a few climbing options. But it will do the trick on a rainy day for sure.

The main focus is on the older children playground. Most of the children go there, it looks like fun, more than the other one, but until we’re older, I guess we can enjoy this one.

Just like pretty much all indoor playgrounds, your child and yourself will need to wear socks at all times. If you don’t have a pair, you can buy one from the vending machine next to the playground, $1 per pair.

I hope you enjoyed this post and like always, happy playing!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina