Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Getting Out in the River Valley

On June 11th the River Valley Alliance held its first annual celebration of the river valley in five different municipalities across the Capital Region.  The event was simply intended as an occasion to encourage people to go explore and enjoy the park system. For Strathcona County we decided to hold an event in one of the region’s lesser-known parks, the Strathcona Science Park

Despite having some abandoned buildings and a bit of overgrowth, the 240-acre park has some of the nicest nature walks and views of the entire river valley. There are many species of birds and animals on display at all times and it is a great place to bring the dog or go for a nice, quiet walk.  
Since the park is not serviced, we called in some help from Strathcona County, the Parks Department and the Alberta Safety Council in order to have garbage collection, park access and power.  We also asked the Alberta Redneck Furry Fliers, River Valley Cycle and Airbender Custom Artistry to join us and set up displays. We thank them again for their time and effort.  The dogs were great!  
We had a number of visitors who had never been to the park and were amazed that such a large nature area existed so close to town. We also met some of the regulars who use the park for bike trips and bird watching.  Strathcona County Mayor Linda Osinchuk and Strathcona County Councillor Vic Bidzinski also paid us a visit. Both are big supporters of the River Valley Alliance and our Plan of Action. Overall, it was a positive event and a beautiful day to get out and explore the river valley. 

If you decide to visit the Science Park, it’s a little tricky to find. Access is on the 17th Street exit off of Highway 16, or you can take Petroleum Way if you’re coming from Sherwood Park.  It’s worth a visit with many interesting walks, and access to the fully-developed Rundle Park is right across the pedestrian bridge.  Go explore!

Mike Lush

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