A park by any other name…

Dear editor,

When is a park not a park? If there is a sign that says “Knight’s of Columbus Park”, is it a park? If the Mayor of Fort Frances cut the ribbon declaring it a park, is it a park? If thousands of dollars were fundraised to buy playground equipment with the blessing of the mayor and council, is it not assumed to be a park? Are neighbours and parents of kids who have used this space for 60 years as a park all wrong, in thinking it is a park?

What will happen to the playground equipment? It will all be ripped up and destroyed to make way for a parking lot! The slides and climbing equipment that is used by hundreds of kids will NOT BE REPLACED. Kids will not be able to walk or bike to a park big enough to play baseball in east of Crowe Avenue in Fort Frances.

East of Central Avenue, and south of the tracks, there used to be: seven ball diamonds with back stops; three fields used for football; four outdoor rinks with boards and lights and; two tennis courts. Today, there is one ball diamond and one rink.

Is it any wonder why kids don’t play outside anymore? There is nowhere to play!

The Town of Fort Frances is doing an expensive study to figure out what is needed to go forward with recreation. Is it not obvious? Stop bulldozing green space to make parking lots. Let the kids have a place to play.

I will end by quoting a current town councillor, who recently said, “it’s important we make investments for young families in the community,” and “the Town of Fort Frances is in dire need of improved recreational amenities and tourism for youth, children and families.”

Thank you,
Patti and Richard Boileau