a new addition to playgrounds…
31 July, 2015
So, last Saturday morning my kids and I went along to the special Saturday Story time held by Lennox Head Library and thoroughly enjoyed the story telling and subsequent fun craft of pasting sunflower seeds on to tree-shaped cut outs of old books and sealing them ready for planting in our own garden at home. Whilst we were there, a lovely mum mentioned to me that she really liked the byron4kids website and had used it to find new parks and playgrounds in the area she’d recently moved to. She proceeded to tell me about a playground she had found in East Ballina by Prospect Lake and showed me some photos on her phone of her kids having fun there. She suggested it would be a great addition and I wholeheartedly agreed, thanked her for letting me know about it and promised to get down there and check it out… which I did today with Elton, my three year old boy.
After attending his swimming class in Fernleigh this morning, we headed on over to East Ballina to excitedly find ‘a new playground’. All I knew is that it was the first right after East Ballina Shopping Centre. We drove along Eyles Drive until we came alongside the lake. In the distance I thought I spotted the colourful dogs she had mentioned to me so we parked up and walked across the grass fronted lakeside. Sure enough, it was the three colourful and climbable dog statues and Elton had enormous fun clambering aboard each one! They were erected as a friendly reminder to discourage dog-owners from letting their dogs do their business by the sandy shore of the lake where little ones enjoy paddling and splashing around in the warmer months.
From our position by the dogs, we spotted the outline of a playground through the trees so after a sufficient play – and photo shoot with the dogs – we wandered over to the playground.
Nestled amongst shady trees that run along the foreshore there, is a rubber surface playground. Comprised mainly of rope climbing frames and a large yellow slide it looked fun but somewhat of a challenge for a three year old… and it was.
It’s a bit of a climb up (for a little one) to get to the rope bridge to take you across to the all important long and curving yellow slide. The rope bridge is rather high and unless, as a parent, you are particularly tall it is practically impossible to assist your child across it. We just about made it and of course the reward of the slide down was worth it but it is definitely a climbing frame for the older child. Underneath however, was a low, wide and easy to use swing which Elton loved trying from every angle.
The playground itself is located on John Sharpe Street which is linked at both ends to Eyles Drive. We wandered back to our car through the trees spotting the odd bench and picnic table and thought it looked a lovely spot for a picnic and we could definitely see ourselves down here again in the warmer months so we can take advantage of the lake too. A shared cycle and walking path surround about two thirds of the lake (the remainder is on-road connection) so I am thinking it would be a good idea to bring our bikes down too.
Although there are no on site toilet facilities; East Ballina Shopping Centre is just 500 metres up the road on Links Avenue where you can purchase a variety of refreshments from a number of outlets and make use of the amenities.