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Bowness Park

We made the most of the beautiful weather on Sunday, after days of rain, and took the boys to Bowness Park in the North West of Calgary.  This was my first visit to the Park which dates back to before the first World War. Bowness, which is now squarely situated within the city of Calgary, was a town in its own right until around 1964, when it  amalgamated with the city.

Walking through Bowness Park

This is one of many parks in Calgary, and obviously a popular one, judging by the number of people enjoying the sunshine and the park’s amenities.  Although it was so full that we had trouble finding parking, the park covers 30 hectares providing plenty of open space for walkers, runners, cyclists and picnickers.  Large portions of the grassed areas are left in their natural state while picnic and playground areas are kept mown.

The park lies between the Bow River and a small lagoon.  Paddle boats and canoes are available for hire on the lagoon, but to Asher and Cale’s dismay, you have to be 16 years old to operate them yourself.  Since both boys considered it infra dig to have to paddle with an adult we decided on mini golf instead.

Asher admiring his putt

The course, which was probably built about 50 years ago, lacks the imaginative twists and turns of more modern courses and is slightly the worse for wear, but despite its drawbacks we all had a great time playing the 18 holes.

Bowness Park also boasts a miniature train, a spray park, and has a coffee and an ice cream shop.  In winter the lagoon becomes a skating rink and there is cross country skiing on the walking paths.

Cale with his eye on the ball

We all came off the golf course looking forward to an ice cream but the line up was formidable so we decided to go along with Brian’s suggestion to try out Peter’s Drive-In on 16th Avenue, which he insisted that everyone had to go to at least once.

Peter’s is a Calgary institution, having run, virtually without change, since 1964.  I can’t vouch for the food, but everyone seemed to enjoy their hot dogs, hamburgers and fries.  I can say, though, that their milkshake is rivalled only by those produced by Friesland Dairy in East London, South Africa.  It was delicious.

All in all an enjoyable summer’s afternoon.  Bowness Park is in the process of being redeveloped and I look forward to visiting it again next summer.

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August 17, 2010 - Posted by | Living in Canada

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