Corvallis Parenting: outdoor story time, summer camp opportunity, water fun, parks and recreation do good and coloring

Remember parents, August is the last month story time for children from 0 to 5 years old will be held outdoors for the Corvallis-Benton County Library. Held Tuesdays in Central Park from 10:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. – weather permitting – it’s a great opportunity to meet other new parents and start your child’s first friendships under the clear blue skies of the willamette valley.

Late Summer Camp Opportunity: If you thought it was too late to enroll your children in summer camps, the Corvallis Environmental Center (CEC) has an option for you.

Nature Camp: Animal Morphs lets kids ages 5-11 “get up close and personal” with the animals that live at the Avery House Nature Center. Through these interactions, children will have the opportunity to practice safe animal handling, compare and contrast different groups of animals, learn about predator-prey relationships, study the anatomy and adaptations of vertebrate species, and more.

Camp activities will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. the week of August 15-19. Registration closes August 8 at 11 p.m., so don’t delay!

To register and learn more about the camp, click on here.

Have fun with water: On August 5, the Boys & Girls Club will go wild.

Director Helen Higgins asked the Corvallis Fire Department to help her keep the children cool by spraying them with fire hoses. The Boys & Girls Club will take children to the grounds between the Club and the Circle Fire Station – except in an emergency taking the fire department, of course.

And no worries, unlike how they are used for house fires, this spray will simply bring a refreshing rain on the heads of children.

What’s new with Parks & Rec: Did you know that Porter Park, located at 1895 NW Hayes, will have a new playground this fall? Existing play equipment has been found to be in poor condition and will be replaced. We’ll keep an eye on things and let you know when the new gear is ready for the kids to try out.

Also, this fall there will be an addition to Eric Scott McKinley Skate Parklocated on the 1st St. and B Ave. Plans are to add a harder skating section for advanced riders.

According to Parks & Rec.’s Jackie Rochefort, “It will be a more advanced skate feature so the younger ones can have better access to the easier areas, and then the more advanced riders will have a bit more of a separate spot.”

And for the family that loves racquet games, there are new tennis and pickleball courts at Riverbend Park, located 750 SE Rivergreen Ave., and at Cloverland Park, located at 1605 NW 29th St. Tennis can be a lifelong sport that you and your kids will enjoy for years to come, and getting out and trying could inspire your child to be the next Andre Agassi or Venus Williams.

MLK Park: In 2018, Corvallis Parks & Rec. made some changes to the MLK Park, located at 4905 NW Walnut Blvd. They improved the playground, added toilets, created a “parents’ patio” in the barn and added a water point. They are now looking to make further improvements, including historically appropriate artwork that can truly embody the spirit of Dr. King.

“We want to honor his legacy and his mission,” Rochefort said. “We want to bring color to the park.”

The people of the city work with the Linn Benton NAACP and a group of ambassadors created by the community to ensure the images, quotes and art are all representative of the man we named the park for. On the planning table right now are an entry plaza, additional restrooms, a large common area for socializing, a natural play area, an interactive water feature, a fenced-in dog park, and a playground. sport that will include at least half a basketball court.

“Throughout the park, we also want to share this message of peace and hope. [King exemplified]said Rochefort. “And we want to do that on a level that families understand.”

The goal is to have the first shovel in the ground by next summer, and that will begin with a launch event on August 28 to begin fundraising.

Color Oregon: Imagine the Oregon coast colored in gorgeous oranges and purples with the yellow waves meeting the lime green clouds. You can see it for yourself if that’s how your child decides to color it, and you can find out how it colors for free.

Oregon State Parks and Recreation has an online coloring book titled “Celebrating Oregon’s Iconic Coastline” that you can print at home. These remarkable pictures of crabs, bicycles, seals and horses are all made up of wonderful patterns that let your children see the world in a mirage of color.

The best part is that you can sit next to them and also enjoy a nice coloring session, because these pages will appeal to all ages. And once you are done with these images, you can find out more here.

By Sally K Lehman