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Did you play in neighbourhood streets when you were growing up? Maybe you rode your bike freely, played street hockey or tag. You and your children are invited to the upcoming Westmount Play Street event to experience these joys.

If you're open to volunteering as a play monitor for a portion of the event please contact me. Play monitors will help us keep an eye on the equipment and encourage kids to join. Street play zones include: 1. biking (volunteers covered), 2. free play/bowling, 3. street hockey and broom ball.

Finally, if your kids would like to host a lemonade stand at this event, we'd be happy to create a space for them.

Play Streets is a citizen-led project in the Westmount neighbourhood. Play streets are events that allow neighbours to play together in streets closed off to vehicle traffic. The event involves a temporary street closure to allow children and adults more – and different – public space to play and be physical active. Organized activities may take place or the event may simply exist as a time frame during which children and adults are invited to engage in whatever play they wish. Play streets range in frequency from periodic closures to regularly scheduled, frequent closures that run year-round.

At this point, Westmount -- specifically, the Westmount Community League in cooperation with the City of Edmonton -- is piloting play streets through a series of summer events, the first of which coincides with 100in1 Day. The events highlight the potential of repurposing our streets as places where free play can take place, especially in mature neighbourhoods where narrow streets and vehicle traffic can create barriers to outdoor street play. In this way, the Play Streets project is also an exercise in place-making and supports the goals of 100in1DAy.

Unlike block parties, play streets are open to all in the neighbourhood and therefore follow a different permitting process. The City of Seattle runs a play street program which is a great example to look at if you're curious:

  • Media coverage on Westmount Play Street initiative.

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