White Oak Park - Cary, NC
This past Thursday was National Walk to a Park Day, and Peter could not pass up celebrating... by having his Chief of Staff push him in his stroller to a park. We'll give him a break considering he is a new walker and the park is over a mile each way from our house - but we digress!
White Oak is a great little park with some cool features, so without further ado, here are your Park Points:
Location: 1216 Jenks Carpenter Road, Cary, NC
Stroller friendly? Yes, there are paved paths and access to a paved greenway. Toddler friendly? Generally yes. The playground area is mulch and sand, though, so if you have the toddlers who are still putting everything in their mouth, beware. Bathrooms? Yes. Nice sized with 3 stalls. One very large stall. Lights, but did not seem to have air conditioning. Clean, well stocked. Changing table? Not your usual run-of-the-mill changing table, but there was a table surface that could be used as a changing table in the large stall. Water fountain? Yes, but so-so. Looked like it had been attacked by a child with a red marker. Benches/tables? Yes, there are a few scattered about, as well as two covered pavilions with picnic tables.
Covered areas? Yes, there are 2 covered pavilions with picnic tables. One has bathrooms and a large charcoal grill - would be nice for a small party. The other looks out onto the playgrounds.
Parking? A moderate amount. It might get full on a nice weekend day, though, or if someone was having a party at one of the pavilions. We drive past here regularly and the lot frequently looks at least semi-full. Greenway access? Yes, there is a path to the White Oak Creek Greenway. Jungle gyms? Yes, 2 - one for kids ages 5-12, and one for littler toddlers ages 2-5. Plus a swing set with a baby and a regular swing. Other cool information: Basketball and pickle ball courts. A field with soccer goal nets. Bike rack to lock up your bicycle - bring your own lock!
With White Oak being so close to our house, we know visiting this park will be a solid staple in our future. Plus, the pavilions there look ideal for a future birthday party. However, for right now, it's not the most ideal park for us because 1.) the playground area is mulch and there is a sand pit, and this can be dangerous for Peter because everything still goes in mouth right now, and 2.) while I would not call the park hilly by any stretch, the sidewalk areas where Peter would be walking are at an incline, and as a new walker, that is a bit difficult. That being said, though, there is a large flat field by the pavilion with the bathrooms where a toddler could go wild.
Even with the mulch, though, we didn't want our walk to the park to be for naught, so Peter's Chief of Staff endeavored to be vigilant and just make sure the mulch did not go in the mouth. Peter really enjoyed the 2-5 year old playground, climbing up and down stairs (with assistance) and through a tube tunnel.
One neat thing about this park is it is one of the few in the area with pickleball courts. We personally have never played pickleball and are not familiar with the rules, but it looks like - and we know this sounds weird - a combination of tennis and ping pong. You can find more information about pickleball from the Town of Cary here and we will eventually learn to play with Peter. There will also be a Town of Cary pickleball tournament next year in early May - information about that can be found here.
That's it for now on this park, but as Peter grows and as he visits the park more, I'm sure we will be having a follow-up post about this location and its amenities.
**Just as a reminder, while at parks and events, we take videos and post them to Peter's Instagram account, peterdoesparks. These videos are saved on Instagram in his Highlights, so you can get a real feel at any time for the parks he has visited.**