Updated: Jul 12, 2019
In 2016, the Bain Avenue Parkette was renamed in memory of Erica Stark, a neighbourhood mom who died tragically while walking her dog. Naming this tiny and peaceful park after her was a meaningful gesture, the kind of thing that unites a community and pulls something of tremendous positive value from a tragedy.
Now, if only the city would get in there and replace the ancient, run-down equipment.
The setting – on a slice of land no larger than most of the semi-detached lots on the street – is cozy, peaceful, beautiful. It’s so small that virtually the entire space is shaded by one tree. This parkette has huge potential to be a hidden alternative to nearby Withrow (very nearby – walk across an alleyway and you’re there) and an upgrade along the lines of other micro-parks like Tiverton would instantly make this one of my favourites.
If your child is around two years old, as mine was when we visited, the lousy equipment won’t matter. My daughter loved the meagre climber, because it was manageable for her. She happily climbed up the stairs and down the slide, had a go on the swings, toddled around in the sandbox with a few construction toys left by the neighbourhood. I sat on the decrepit park bench (my daughter pointed to its rotting slats and said, “look! Wood chips!”) and enjoyed the serenity for a while.
I have hopes that this one will get a sprucing up soon; other parks, like Stanley G. Grizzle, have been rejuvenated shortly after a re-naming, so maybe it’s coming.