A new Wrightwood Park
Is Wrightwood Park (1301 Anderson St) your local park? Durham Parks and Recreation is planning to update it with new playground equipment and features next year. What kind of equipment would you like to see installed? Click here to fill out a survey by the Friday, December 11 deadline. (You can take the survey in either English or Spanish.) Your suggestions will be compiled into a request for proposal and playground manufacturers will start submitting their designs and bids. If everything goes right, construction will start in July or August.
Durham’s a top-tier bicycle city
PeopleForBikes, a bicycle/bike commuter advocacy organization, has ranked Durham a city in the top 10 percent. They took a look at 550 cities across the USA and ranked them in five categories—ridership, safety, network (the ability to get to where you’re going by bicycle), reach (how far the network reaches into the various communities), and acceleration (the speed at which the community works together to improve biking).
A big project for the City of Durham’s Transportation Department will be to make a 7-mile network of low-stress Neighborhood Bike Routes, which will include American Dr between Constitution Dr and Morreene Rd, Stadium Dr/Olympic Ave between Horton Rd and N Roxboro St, Meriwether Dr between E Carver St and Old Oxford Rd, N Miami Blvd between E Geer and Raynor Sts, Raynor St between N Miami Blvd and Liberty St, Liberty St between Oakwood Ave and S Miami Blvd, Fayetteville St between Umstead and E Main Sts, and E Lakewood Ave between Duke and Fayetteville Sts.
Learn more about bicycling and bike commuting in the Bull City by visiting the Bike Durham website. Bike Durham is a partner of PeopleForBikes and is our local bicycle advocacy organization.
Fitness and fun
Many of us who enjoy the outdoors and also Durham Parks and Recreation’s indoor and outdoor programs and features. While the pandemic has caused the closure of most DPR facilities since March, some programs are accepting participants while practicing social distancing and heightened cleanliness routines.
Here’s what’s open right now:
UPCOMING FUN ACTIVITIES AT DPR:
New park on the way
Durham Parks and Recreation has just broken ground for a new 50-acre park on Hoover Rd in eastern Durham. When the Hoover Road Athletic Park is ready for the grand opening (scheduled for fall 2021), the park will boast four natural-grass, lighted fields; charging stations for e-cars in a spacious parking lot; a large picnic shelter; and a nice playground and walking trails.
Here’s the groundbreaking ceremony:
Design your own walking tours
Here’s a fun page from the OLLI at Duke’s online Learning for Life calendar (OLLI is the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute). It comes in handy for people who are tired of being cooped up and want to go out and get some exercise and see things of interest.
Near the top of the page (on the left-hand side) is a link for touring famous museums from around the world, such as the Guggenheim, the Louvre, and the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.
Continue down the page and see three presentations that “street historian” John Schelp put together centered on the vintage local postcards from his collection. The presentations can serve as the basis for your own walking or biking tours where you can learn so much about Durham’s rich history. Part 1 covers West Durham, Duke University, and Erwin Mills; Part 2 covers Watts Hospital, Christian’s Mill, and part of downtown; and Part 3 covers parts of downtown, Hayti, North Carolina Central University, and the beginnings of Research Triangle Park.
Enjoy your time outdoors!
Learn new coping skills
Dr Tiffany Hopkins, a clinical psychologist at UNC–Chapel Hill, is uploading daily videos to her new 5 Minute Coping Skills YouTube channel. Visit when you start to feel stressed and learn coping techniques like Paced Breathing and Sensory Awareness. Visit Dr Hopkins’ channel here and subscribe so that you can add her short, helpful videos to your daily routine.
Durham NC parkrun
If you like to run for fun, join Durham NC parkrun. Once you register, you can take part in timed 5k runs on Saturdays starting at 8am in Southern Boundaries Park (100 Third Fork Dr). Print out your barcode from the website so the officials can give you your time. Check out the course here, and click here to sign up/print out your barcode. It’s free; click here to see typical questions asked of the volunteer organizers (or simply write to email@example.com with your questions. Some of the runners relax after the weekly run at Foster’s Market in Durham (2694 Durham–Chapel Hill Blvd (aka Hwy 15-501))—if you have the time, feel free to join them.
Did you know that Durham Parks and Recreation has a Weather Line at 919-560-4636? If you’re planning to attend a DPR event and the weather’s iffy, just call the DPR Weather Line or visit their Facebook page to see whether the event has been cancelled.
Sign up for programs online first by opening an account: Go to DPRPlayMore.org, click on “Register Online,” and then click on “Request New Account” in the upper right-hand corner.