Friday, October 26, 2012
Photos: Five things at Klyde Warren Park you have to see to believe
The park, which opens Saturday, is beautiful and functional.
DALLAS You've heard the name a million times by now -- Klyde Warren, the little boy who had a revolutionary $110 million park named after him. That namesake park opens Saturday, and we recently got a sneak peek at all its features.
From the landscaping to the permanent structures to the creativity in design, everything is well thought-out. As you get ready for Polyphonic Spree on Saturday and a glimpse at the city’s first structure that will unify Uptown and downtown, make a point to check out the five following aspects of the park.
The Reading and Games Room
Along the west promenade of Klyde Warren Park is a row of trees that comprise The Dallas Morning News Reading and Game Room. This is the No. 1 must-see, and not just because the DMN owns our company. The ladies of Shabby Sheep yarn boutique have completely yarn-bombed the trees and garden area: The trees are covered in bright string and woven insects such as caterpillars, and knitted flowers are staked in the ground. Owner Ronda Van Dyk said her team will be teaching free knitting classes when the park’s programming is in full swing. They will be yarn-bombing for holidays as well. Don’t miss this unique art installation.
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Opposite the yarn extravaganza is another promenade that spans the entire 1,000-foot length of the park. Jane’s Lane lines the west side of Klyde Warren with contemporary white arches, similar to the famed arch in St. Louis on a smaller scale. Bud Smith dedicated this romantic walkway to his wife Jane as a gift for their 60th wedding anniversary. The arches are encased by trees and lit with Chinese lanterns, making for a great photo opp.
My Best Friend’s Park
Klyde Warren Park is divided in two sections by Harwood Street. Several of the listed attractions are off the Great Lawn (which has wi-fi). Across Harwood on the north is the East Lawn, which plays host to the dog park called My Best Friend’s Park. Dogs can roam leash-free within the gated area built of synthetic turf and complete with a dual water fountain for owner and Rover. Up to 30 medium-sized dogs can fit in the space and chase water that arbitrarily pops up from an in-ground fountain, a clever distraction for dogs with plenty of energy.
The Children’s Park
Anyone over the age of 10 will be jealous when they pass by the Children’s Park, which should be named the coolest adventure park of all time. It features two separate playgrounds, one geared towards toddlers and the other for older kids, a structure called the Rotary Learning Tree, and the Butterfly Pavilion, which has bathrooms and fountain that sprays upward to look like butterfly wings. The park also has climbing features designed to look like molecules that put monkey bars to shame. The whole playground can hold up to 100 children and is sure to be a babysitter hot spot.
While parks are mostly for lounging or Frisbee, Klyde Warren is raising the standard. The builders installed an adult playground off the East Lawn where visitors can check out equipment for one of the permanent ping-pong tables, foosball tables, or the putting green. There’s also a court for Pétanque, a game similar to bocce ball. Volunteers will be stationed in The Commons during during park hours (6 a.m. to 11 p.m.) to rent out balls, clubs, paddles, and more balls. If you are so inclined, bring your own. Either way you’re guaranteed a righteous (and free) time.
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