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Equipment by Landscape Structures.

Surface: wood chips.

Updated August 2023. Old review here.

Cummer Park is a similar setup to Ellesmere Park (playground, community centre, skate park) except that this one has a bit more outdoor space, with tennis courts and a baseball diamond to add to the equation. Given their similarities, it’s fitting that they’ve both recently had their playgrounds upgraded.

The rejuvenation at Cummer Park is a bit more impressive than Ellesmere’s re-do. The main climbing structure has a vague bottom-of-the-ocean feeling to it, with its blue colour palette, wavy lines, and strange tendrils reaching to the sky. My son had a great time trying to balance on every possible surface, and enjoyed the swooping, extra-wide slide. He also enjoyed the monkey bars hidden under the structure’s bridge; a nice touch and good use of space that I wish more playgrounds would add.

The climber for smaller kids is a bit minimal, but still not bad. A saucer swing, four standard swings, and two standalone spring riders make up the rest of the equipment. Also new is a set of shaded metal picnic tables, and very non-shaded benches. I was unsure of whether to indicate the existence of a bathroom here, because I’m sure the community centre has one, but it’s a bit too far from the playground to be useful, especially of your children – like mine – wait until disaster is imminent before informing you that they need to pee.

The skate park (on the other side of the community centre) remains one of the best-shaded in the city, but unfortunately not one of the best-constructed. I’m not a skater by any means, but the seams in the concrete feel like they’re too wide, too many, and poorly placed to make this a top-tier place for scooting or skating. Several of the ramps have significant concrete seams right at their base, which to me seems a bit problematic.

Still, we had fun scooting around, having the whole skate park to ourselves for a long while. A bit later, two local kids came by with remote controlled cars, and we had a great time watching the little vehicles race around the skate park, going over jumps and crashing into each other dramatically every once in a while.

So overall, Cummer Park and Ellesmere Park remain paired in my mind: one is a good playground with a mediocre skate park, while the other is a good skate park with a mediocre playground.

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