14 July 2012


Not long after I wrote about the lack of info on the opening of Calvert Vaux Park, the park actually became accessible to the public.  Much as I like to think that I had some influence on the process, I am sure it's just a coincidence.

I do not know when the park opened to the public, but on July 4, during a run, I saw that there was much activities by park staff.  Weed-whackers were used by staff in clear, plastic overalls.  Other staff members were on hands and knee in some places to remove the weeds among what was planted.  The east gate was opened to admit trucks carrying heavy equipments.  One machine looked like a zamboni, perhaps used scrubbing hard surfaces.

I asked a park personnel when the park would be open to the public and he answered, "Soon, very soon."  I automatically dismissed his answer as something his manager had told him to say.  Little did I know that the man was telling the truth. Maybe on Saturday 7 July the park started to admit the public.  I would not know since for my post-lunch walk on that day I opted to go to Kings Highway instead of Calvert. I already gave up on waiting for it to open. Let it be a surprise, something that I don't think about but happens anyway.

Sunday 8 July, evening, sun was already down but the sky was still somewhat lit, I decided to have my post-dinner walk to check out Calvert Vaux. Lo and behold, the gate near the footbridge was open. Not wide open, but at least it was not locked and there were no people inside working. It was finally open to the public! I quickly went inside and looked around. A small group of people was on the futbol field, so I was not the only person there. It was already dark so I did not take photos. I knew where I would run the next morning.

I did run in Calvert Vaux Park the next day and took the photos below. After all that waiting, I was a bit disappointed that it was not large. If you do not mind running the same path over and over then it is OK. Perhaps some day the back fence will be open to connect the new park to the undeveloped area then you can have a long run. For now, it is best for walking and for adding distance to a route, but not as a running route by itself.

The open gate!  What a welcome sign!!!
I suppose the Mayor and other politicians were at Calvert Vaux Park for some ribbon-cutting ceremony in 2011.  To me, it was still opened to the public around July 4, 2012.  Don't let this plaque distort history.

The paths in Calvert Vaux Park do not all connect.  This one ends in a semi-circular bench, can be a romantic spot, if you don't mind being surprised by wanderers.
The southern end of the park.  Behind the photographer is a mesh fence, beyond that is the undeveloped part of the area that has a few more futbol fields and baseball diamonds, perhaps a homeless camp, too.
I was slightly surprised to discover that these water fountains actually worked.  Now that I am an avid runner, details like this are important features of a public park.
All these times looking into the park from the outside I did not this ditch existed.  Perhaps it was a natural stream and the architects wanted to preserve it.  There was no water flowing, that was for sure, but it still looks nice.
A goal-to-goal view of one of the futbol field.  The AstroTurf surface felt weird to run on, I'll avoid it.
The area is not near any subway stations although some buses probably run on Cropsey or maybe even Shore Road itself.  If you come by bicycle, you can chain it to this rack.
There is no public restroom at Calvert Vaux Park at the moment. Whether it's because of security reason or what else, I do not know.  I was hoping this trailer is the bathroom but there was no sign to indicate so.

This is probably a tool shack, not a restroom.  There is one in Scarangella Park near my home, too, must be a new thing for the parks.

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