September 24, 2015:
The Children’s Forest, the newest addition to the Irving Nature Park, has been a hit among the park’s 250,000 visitors this year.
Watch our video on the Children's Forest
The Forest is now complete after a near 20 years in the making. Once a gravel pit for the Department of Transportation, the Forest now features picnic tables with free propane barbeques, a playground, and life-size mazes.
The cedar trees that make up the mazes were planted by local school children.
“The planting program began in 1996. It’s a piece of ground that was developed by J.D. Irving, Limited (JDI) and it’s a testament to the long-term thinking of our owners,” says Kelly Honeyman, Chief Naturalist, J.D. Irving, Limited. “We documented the exact locations in which the groups planted trees so that they could come back and see them in future years."
Just minutes from uptown Saint John, the Children’s Forest is part of Irving Nature Park’s 600 acres of serene and conserved habitat. The Park’s hiking trails, lookouts, and variety of protected ecosystems and wildlife have attracted over 4.5 million visitors since 1992.
“Whether you’re interested in family fun or spotting water fowl, the Forest has something for everyone,” Kelly explains. “The intent was to bring back the forests in this area and create wildlife, while also providing a place for children to enjoy.”
The Children’s Forest is hoping to attract even more families and new faces with events and activities taking place throughout the fall season.
Check out the schedule of events to find out what’s happening this Fall at the Irving Nature Park.