Named after Dr Bernard Paquet who was Saint-Laurent’s mayor from 1990-2001 and the last mayor of the city before it merged with Montreal, the playground at this park has recently undergone a complete renovation. We first visited in the summer of 2015 and noted that while the lake, bridges and gardens were charming, the two separate play areas were filled with broken and splintery equipment. One mom that we met mentioned that the playgrounds were pretty much “abandoned”.
So, thanks to a StrollerParking reader who let us know the work was complete, we hurried over on a chilly yet sunny morning and had the whole place to ourselves. While you could park right next to the actual playground, we left the car closer to the southern edge of the park because I wanted to saunter through the grass and across the bridge. Waving “Hello!” to the ducks, my toddler spied the colourful playground, quickly forgot about the ducks, and bolted for the play structures.
Everything here has changed. No longer separate areas on either end of the park, the big-kid and toddler sections are RIGHT beside each other and both are on wood chips with concrete borders. The firm Tessier Récréo-Parc has created a nature-themed playground with equipment from GameTime that is interesting, creative, and has products that we’ve not previously seen. And we’re at over 500 parks, we’ve seen a lot!
We “ooooed and awwwwed” at the different play things and my little guy wandered up and down, over and around. The toddler structure has different sections and kids can cross the Dragonfly Link, crawl over and through the Honeycombs (or sit in them and buzz like mine did), hop down the vine climber, haul yourself up the Volcano rock wall, try out the slides, or do the sliding puzzle on the upper platform. It’s geared for kids from 18 months-5 years but I found the staircase fairly steep for little ones and the smaller slide is a bit tricky to get to with only a ladder or the dragonfly. But for 3-year olds? Awesome. The picnic table underneath the slide was the perfect spot for his 2nd breakfast of the day (two boys is equaling a big grocery bill…) and once he was re-energized we took a turn in GameTime’s FANTASTIC Expression Swing. If you haven’t seen this before it’s a adult-child swing where you can swing together! I had to stuff him in but then we cozily swung together. What an innovative way to play with an older sibling, parent, or grandparent. I could even reach to give him a kiss on the forehead as we swung up and down. (p.s. I have a TAG for Parent-Baby Swing in the sidebar of the website so you can find more playgrounds with them. There are not all that many yet as they were just introduced in the summer of 2015).
Just a hop over the paved border with its benches and small trees, is the big-kid area. Both sections are close together so it’s easy to watch kids in both parts, but be aware that there is no fencing by the road.
We stood by the swings…and didn’t know where to start. There are the dauntingly high slides, ladders galore, a colourful Butterfly Climber, Sprout Climbers with little footholds and handgrips where you can pretend to be trapped in a jungle, rocks to jump across, monkey bars to swing from, and a giant scorpion climber.
“What is dat?!” inquired the little one.
“A scorpion!” I answered as he proceeded to quiz me on all the body parts.
Satisfied with my answers, he went back to the toddler part and explored everything for a second time. The larger play structure was pretty beyond him, so we’ll have to come back with his older brother to try it all out.
Note that the pictures of the bridge and ducks are all from last year, as nothing was yet blooming when we visited in spring of 2016.
Couple of things I noted:
-There’s a water fountain on the gravel path, closer to the road.
-There are no picnic tables (besides the mini one under the climber), but there may be some coming.
-Because of its location in the park, there’s will be limited shade in the summer.
-There’s a lot to see so I put a ton of photos in the gallery. Click the pictures to see full screen!
This park’s paths connect to Parc Guillaume-Bruneau (which we visited by I haven’t written about yet), so you could bring your stroller and go for a walk.
Also, if you’re tempted to bring food to feed the ducks, please don’t! You can read why HERE.
|Toddler park (2-5)||✓|
|Fenced toddler park|
|Big kid park (5-12)||✓|
|Big kid swings||✓|
|Reduced mobility swings|