Brooklyn Park
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Playstructure at Brooklyn ParkWhat’s to Love: Brooklyn park is a (relatively) small neighborhood park in inner-southeast Portland. Mostly, this is your basic Portland Park with somewhat outdated play structures, slides, water feature, picnic benches, swings, merry-go-round, etc. However, there are a couple of interesting points to make about Brooklyn Park that might make you want to go out of your way for a visit.

Water Feature at Brooklyn ParkOn hot summer days, you might find a slip-n-slide extending the full length of a pretty big hill in the heart of the park. Your kids will get plenty of speed on this wet tarp, and so will you, if you’re brave enough to join your kids. If you’re lucky, a resident neighbor often opens up a storage area that contains all kinds of fun toys, activities, and playground equipment. The schedule is a bit erratic, but it’s not like it’s his full-time job! Here is a short video clip:

Big Hill at Brooklyn ParkCaveats: You’ll definitely see some questionable characters hanging out near the restrooms at this park from time to time.  We’ve never been bothered, but you may have to answer some questions like, “Dad, why is that man sleeping on the ground?” Or, “Is there a bed inside the bathroom?”

The equipment here is just so-so. It’s definitely not worth a trip just to play on the equipment.

Website: Portland Parks and Recreation

Distance from Portland:  This park is about 2-3 miles from downtown Portland.

Recommended Ages:  This park is best for kids ages 4 – 8.  The equipment is limited for the toddler set.

Parental Stress Factor:  If seeing homeless people stresses you out, you may want to keep away.  However, like I said previously, we’ve never had a problem at the park.  If anything, these folks have been friendly.

Also, people routinely have their dogs off-leash here.  I think you’ll find these dogs friendly, but you may want to exercise some caution with your kids.

Physical Difficulty:  The Portland Rec. site claims full accessibility for a section of the park and the restrooms.  If that’s the case, the “section” is so small that it’s probably not worth the trouble.

Family Fun Factor:  As a park, the family fun factor is relatively low; however, the slip-n-slide and activity closet can increase this significantly.

Pet Friendly:  Yes!  This is a great park for dogs to play fetch.  There is a hill where you can run them up and down, and they’ll get plenty of exercise.  Off-leash dogs are not a good idea around the playground equipment.

Weather Considerations:  This park has good wood-chip-coverage that helps with drainage.  It’s pretty decent year round and is tolerable in the summer due to some decent shade.

Baseball diamond at Brooklyn ParkInsider Info: The little league is run by a man whose father was active in the major leagues. I’ve talked to him before, and he really knows how to run a league and work with kids. The games are organized and well run. If you’re in the area, and your kids are interested in baseball, I would definitely look into the Powell Little League. It looks like a great website too!

Basketball court at Brooklyn ParkFamily Tips:  This is not the best picnic park, and if a baseball game is happening, the green-space is a bit limited.  Your kids might enjoy running and/or rolling down the steep, grassy hill.  It’s also a decent place for playing with “projectile toys” like rockets and/or slingshots.

Technorati Tags: Brookly Park, Portland, parks, slip-n-slide, neighborhood, Portland Family Adventures

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