Location: Between 70S and Old Harding
Size of Park: Hard to determine, medium, possibly large
Crowds: Very crowded
Approximate Age of Patrons: All ages
Topics of Conversation: "Look at me, Mama!"
Stray Dogs Seen: None
Types of Vehicles in Parking Lots: Family vehicles
Perceived Safety: High
Number of Gunshots Heard: None
Dog Friendliness: Medium low
Number of pitbulls sighted: None
Incorporation of Local History: Some
Recommended Patrons: Children and people with children
On the map linked to on the Parks page, this park looks enormous, like it stretches clear from Old Harding Road to 70S. But in real life, what looks like actual park is just medium-sized, at the corner of 70S and Colice Jean. The rest of the land is filled with a library and some kind of sports field. There are other parks near libraries and libraries that seem to sit in parks, so this may all be the park. But if you go thinking you're going to have a ton of room — to walk your dog, say — you'd be mistaken.
Other than that weirdness, which I hardly think you can blame on the park, this is a great park. There's a 1/5-mile paved path that loops around the outside of the enormous wooden playground, so parents of kids old enough to not need hovering over can walk the path while their kids play and still be close enough to keep an eye out for trouble. The playground is amazing, a real work of art. The nicest touch is that, if you stand above the playground, near the library, you can see that the spires on the playground echo the church spire in the background.
I saw that and it just tickled me so much, a nice little artistic flourish from the park designer, something to let you know he had considered exactly where this equipment would be.
And then there's the lovely restored Belle Vue I house (circa 1797). All I can say is that, when you stand on the porch and look out over Bellevue, it really is a beautiful view.
I also feel like I should mention that this park was crammed with children, everywhere I looked, and most of them were so cute that it physically hurt my heart. One boy and his dad were racing everywhere and the little boy was running just as fast as his tiny legs would take him while his dad was jogging so gracefully next to him that he appeared to be moving almost in slow motion.
I can't think of a park I've been to recently that's better for people-watching. I could have hung out there all morning, happily.