[Day 9] Spray Park (but not the part with water)

#1
Fun With Despair
So there's like, a spray park around here with an actual fairly large playground next to it. My plan was to honestly review the spray park too, fully clothed, but as it turns out, it's been fenced off with that construction fencing stuff for the better part of a week, so I mostly just stuck to the actual playground segment, which as it turns out, is pretty damn sizable on its own.

Or at least, it has a lot of strange and interesting features. Whether they're worth anything is anyone's guess, but my guess is that you'll probably find out in the next five minutes or so reading this.

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This picture isn't great for the place. It consists of two relatively distinct structures, one right behind the other, with a bunch of random shit scattered around, so taking an actual good picture of this playground is pretty difficult.

First though, let's do the walkaround, see what actually fits into the category of "random shit".

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So first of all, there's this baby swing, and then also these standalone "monkeybars". I put pretty heavy quotation marks around the latter, because these things are like, four feet off the ground maybe? I have to squat to actually grab the handles, which kinda seems like bullshit to me? Like, I'm not asking for much, but at least put them like five or six feet up. This can't even be fun for kids, can it?

As for the baby swing, the space from the bottom of the seat to the ground is maybe a foot or so, which means that the target demographic of these things: drunk teenagers, can't even actually swing.

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Behind it is this array of stuff, kind of arranged in a row like a bit of an obstacle course. The bridge kind of wobbles side to side, which is the opposite of the usual wobbly bridge, but it's kind of neat to try and balance on while you walk. There's these hanging stepping stone things, which I've come across a couple times. As a kid, I thought these were like the coolest thing, but also when I was a kid I could barely find any playgrounds that actually had them. I'm kind of angry that they're only popping up with any frequency now as an adult.

Then there's the climbing wall, which is a common thing really. This time around though, it's made of mostly a rubbery material, which means it's a little more interesting to climb on than the usual solid metal. The wall actually reacting to your movements adds a lot.

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Next up, we've got two iterations of the "make me fucking vomit" machine. You sit down on the first one and it spins until you throw up, then you stand up and hold the other one and it spins until you throw up.

Jokes aside, I like these spinning rides, and I'm glad that spinning things have kind of stuck around despite being generally labeled as unsafe and dangerous for a while. Yeah, spinning makes you feel a bit sick, but it's fun.

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Getting to the first of the playgrounds, you have this set of monkeybars, which is appropriately off the ground to a higher degree than the last one. Also adorning it is a totem pole type artwork thing, depicting an owl, a man grimacing in pain as he realizes he just accidentally seared grill lines into his titanic dong, and a raccoon.

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Weird artwork is actually just kind of a theme. I think it's supposed to be like, northern Canada themed because it's got these snowshoes (which admittedly I thought were maracas for a solid ten minutes) and what I think is a tutorial for how maple syrup is formed? It's a little bizarre, but I guess it counts as educational, technically.

Also those binoculars on top of the snowshoe panel basically do nothing. Probably because it's dark, but they don't actually appear to have magnifying lenses so...?

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There's also this... thing. It's not tic tac toe, and it's not some kind of connect 4 deal, nor is it a memory match. Both sides of these have a random animal, with no real rhyme or reason to it. It's also straight up missing two of the discs, which is just like... come on guys.

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And then there's the meme wheel. Probably one of the most confusingly designed ones I've seen yet, too. It looks almost like one of those HOW TO USE THE INTERNET book covers, with seemingly random shapes and numbers and icons adorning it. Why is it even like this? I've been sitting here staring at the photo on imgur, and I genuinely can't figure it out at all. If you have any ideas, please tell me.

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Across this path is the rest of the playground, and it's not wobbly or anything interesting, which saves me some time on having to talk about it. Off to the side are these little leaves that you can walk up like stairs. They don't really do a whole lot that stairs wouldn't but they're a little more flavorful.

On the other side is this telescope, which works about as well as the binoculars. It doesn't magnify at all, but the end of it is cut into the shape of a star, so if you look anywhere, it looks like you're seeing a star. Maybe that's just me, but that's cheap as hell. Make it a real one and let me look at real stars, cowards.

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Technically, this one's got three slides, even if two of them are connected. They're all... sufficient, in the most un-exaggerated usage of the term. You slide down, you do it at a reasonable pace, but I don't know if I'd call them fast, or all that enjoyable. They're just a bit too short, that's all.

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After going down the slide, I kind of just stayed on the bottom, and noticed a couple more things. First of all, this climbing wall, which I don't have much to complain about, as its still rather flavorful as far as those go. There's also this cave paneling with a beaver and some mushrooms underneath the park, I guess to give kids some imagination space beneath it kind of like Pirate Park and Butterfly Park did.

While Pirate Park definitely did it better, a cave is a much stronger theme than an ice cream shop like Butterfly Park did, so even if it's a bit low effort, I'll accept it.

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In terms of other climbing things, there's also this leaf vine thing, which unfortunately is kind of uncomfortable and unsafe feeling to climb on. It looks cool, but all the leaves are way too thin to where it feels like you're constantly going to fall off. They aren't terrible secure here either, so they sort of wobble.

Oh, and by the way, @Hearts...

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"hurr i think the thing at butterfly park is supposed to be a caterpillar" yeah well I think you can grow a better pair of eyes because THIS is a caterpillar, you fucking idiot.

god.

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Speaking of "caterpillar things", behind the structure I just gave you a tour of, there's a smaller second playground. I'll review it in here though, because unlike Pirate/Castle Park, there is no ground separating them, and this one doesn't have enough going on for a full review.

I'm not really sure what to say about this average janky ladder myself, besides the fact that it's literally identical to the one in Cimarron Park, in a completely different city.

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(The Cimarron Park one, for comparison.)

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Another way to get up is this thing, which is kind of unique in design I suppose, even if it looks about as boring as you can imagine it is. It's kind of a weird reverse-ladder, and I don't think I've ever actually seen a playground feature like this before.

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On the playground and off to the side, is a rather odd meme wheel in the shape of the sun. It does actually spin, but it doesn't seem to... do anything? Maybe it looks cool when light shines through it in the daytime, or maybe at one point it had some kind of liquid that once swirled inside. Nowadays, it doesn't do much besides vaguely suck a little bit.

There's a pretty boring bridge here too. I only bring it up because it vaguely reminds me of one of those big sidewalk-wide sewer grates that you see in downtown areas a lot.

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Here we have a climbing w- wait a fucking second, this one's from Cimarron Park too. No, I won't link an image this time, but it's literally the exact same. I have a feeling I'm uncovering yet another conspiracy, and this playground's not even a Blue Imp product either. Is there a second shadowy company that built this one and Cimarron Park? The plot thickens...

Oh and there's a pole. It's fine. You can slide.

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The part of the park where the wall and the pole and the bridge and all that are are divided from the part with the slide by what I think is again a climbing wall thing identical to Cimarron Park, which is a bad park to take inspiration from, because it was frankly rather crap to begin with.

As for the slide, it's a bit faster than the ones on the other structure, but also far too short.

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To finish it off, in the distance there is a singular basketball hoop. Due to there only being one, you cannot actually play a real game of basketball, making it essentially the equivalent of putting a hoop above your garage, except you don't need to spend the five dollars on a plastic basketball hoop. Wonderful.

Anyway, let's cut to the point.

THE VERDICT: 5/10

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Once again, this park falls victim to a somewhat odd theme, although it's considerably better than Butterfly Park in that regard and others. In general, this playground does have a lot of variety, and there's stuff for kids of all ages, even if it's total dog shit for adults. I honestly feel like this place would be a lot better though without the Cimarron Park clone sitting there taking up space. It's not only ugly, but also pretty boring.

That's not to say the other part is perfect either, because it has a lot of useless stuff and confusing choices, but I can't actively say it was bad or anything. I'd place this one as sort of above average due to the sheer variety of stuff to do, but do keep in mind that almost all the stuff to do here is indeed extremely average in and of itself, besides maybe that side area with the rubber climbing wall and the hanging stepping stones.

Still though, as a balancing factor to bring it back down, you have exceedingly dumb shit like the binoculars and the telescope, which ended up doing a whole lot of nothing.
#2
Draku
I think it deserves a higher rating for the quasi-obstacle course section alone, as that seems pretty good and fairly above the average for what I'm used to from playgrounds even for similar attractions, but I do agree that even with the sheer amount of other stuff to do the rest is mediocre. The conspiracy about playground parts is interesting, maybe there's a Red Imp somewhere that's slightly better but keeps on the down-low. I do like that reverse ladder though.

Odd that there's so many things built with various ages in mind but there's no actual swingset. A playground without even one real swing is fucked up and that might be worth the point docking alone now that I think about it. Baby swings are not real they are an illusion cast by demons.
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#3
Aidan
you can still play street basketball with one hoop
god it's like you're not even Canadian
#4
Kright
Idk how I feel about that ‘dick beaver” totem ...

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