By Zahrah Munas, Park Coordinator
After being held in different locations over the past few years, August 10, 2014 marked the return home of Sunday in the Park to the new and improved Regent Park in Regent Park.
As usual, hundreds of community members gathered at the park to enjoy the festivities, taste delicious food, hear great music, support local vendors, and play games.
CRC was there too, represented by Bruce, Emily, Zahrah, and members of the CRC Knitting Club, who were there to sell some of their creations. The Knitting Club gathers every Wednesday to learn from each other and to knit beautiful scarves, hats, gloves, and even teddy bears.
At the CRC table, we highlighted two of CRC’s newest new programs to the community – the Regent Park Community Food Centre and the Friends of Regent Park.
The Regent Park Community Food Centre builds on CRC’s history of serving the community by expanding its meal, advocacy, food skills, and, gardening programs. And it uses the principles of the Community Food Centre model of creating a space where the community can come together to grow, cook, share, and advocate for good food. The official launch of the Regent Park Community Food Centre will take place on September 18 at CRC. Plan to attend!
The Friends of Regent Park is made up of community members who are interested in getting involved with the new park to contribute to its wellbeing and upkeep. It will also arrange fun activities to ensure that community members are engaged and connected to the park.
At the CRC table, we also served refreshing cold teas for community members to sample – a mint tea that used freshly picked mint from our gardens and a hibiscus flower tea (with the hibiscus coming from a local organic shop). Both teas, sweetened with honey, went over well on a hot day.
We also conducted a ‘jar polling’, consisting of people putting beans into jars to answer questions. We asked, “Since the new park opened, how many times have you used it?” People had the option of dropping a bean into jars marked “daily”, “weekly”, or “once a month”. We had 103 people participate in the survey and learned that 68 people used the park on a daily basis! It’s great to know that so many residents (almost 70 %) are enjoying the new park space so much.
This survey and the enthusiasm of those who attended Sunday in the Park 2014 are good signs for future community involvement in the park, where the legacy of Sunday in the Park will continue for many years to come!