This week we are profiling Heritage Park in Slidell. Heritage Park has been a mainstay in the Slidell community for a long time and has recently begun a series of improvements including a marina and the improved Slidell Community Playground. It is right on the beautiful Bayou Bonfouca and next door to Palmetto’s.
*Please note that there are no pets, skateboards, bikes, scooters, or skates permitted in the park.
Location: 1701 Bayou Lane (behind the Slidell Train Station) in Old Towne. The park is open daily from 6am to 10pm.
Unique Features: The improved playground (now fully accessible), a large gazebo, Scoggin Station, and several shelters. There is also a splash pad right next to the playground. The walking/jogging trail is dotted with benches throughout the park. There is also a boat launch; the current estimate for the opening of the marina is for later this spring, but no definite date from what I could find. There are also TONS of free events for families throughout the year.
Swings: There are quite a few swings available. One side of the playground has a set of four bucket swings for the littles, located next to the toddler jungle gym, appropriately. The other set of swings consists of a total of 8 standard wings and two inclusive swings. None of the swings are covered in any way.
Surface: The surface of the playground is mulch. It appears to be maintained fairly well.
Bathrooms: There are public restrooms in a building across the parking lot from the playground. With a 3yo it wasn’t too far to get to once the “potty dance” started. It is at the far end of the field from the stage so well placed for any activity. They are also new and really nice!
Shade: There are shady spots throughout the park but trees can be scarce. There is a pavilion within the playground area that can provide some relief while in there. There is also a shelter with tables next to the playground near the splash pad. There is little shade above the actual equipment other than the landings.
Pavilions: There are seven shelters that are first come first serve. But in addition there is the Gazebo that is able to be rented for 4 hour slots ($100 for individuals/organizations with a $100 deposit). Also, the Scoggin Station is available for 4 hour time slots ($75 with a $100 deposit). Those rentals are handled through the Recreation Department 646-4371.
Trails: The walking and jogging path is paved and the following are not permitted: skates, scooters, skateboards, or bicycles. And, again, no pets.
Parking: There are several parking areas around the park near the playground, the marina, and a larger lot is used when there are festivals and such. None of the parking is too far of a walk to your destination.
We go to Heritage Park often for the playground and to enjoy one of the many events they offer. It’s a really great space- well maintained and clean. The playground is what I will focus on for this review.
If you haven’t been to the Slidell Community Playground in the last few years, you will have a very nice surprise waiting for you. It is a beautiful space and the variety of experiences with the equipment is wonderful. There are slides galore, climbing rails and walls, sensory experiences in the toddler set, and even a “zip line” component. My son’s favorite part is a platform that they stand on that goes down like an elevator using their weight. It is super cool!
The number of swings is surprising. I don’t think we have ever been here and not gotten a chance on the swings. The inclusive swings are flanking two standard swings which is great that they are not separate if you need one and have other children with you. There are four bucket swings over by the 2-5 yr old play space. So here is the total: 14 swings!
There are plenty of benches, the pavilion inside the area, and a water fountain right by the gate. The splash pad and a shelter are right next to the playground. The splash pad is available from Memorial Day to Labor Day. We went last summer and the ground is cement and doesn’t have that slick painted surface that most have, which is a plus for me and my clumsy kiddo.
With the playground, my biggest con is the lack of shade over the equipment. This is a flaw with all playground equipment and most parks if there isn’t ready shade from trees. There are warnings about the equipment being hot. So I advise you to time the visits early or later or on an overcast day. When the park first opened, I did have a few friends contact the city about this issue. Some sail shades would be nice, though.
Our family does enjoy this park very much. The free events they offer are wonderful and great for families. Once they finish the harbor it is going to create a great space for boaters as well. Imagine pulling up in the boat and enjoying the music from one of the many concerts they have! During our visit they were setting the stage up for that evening’s concert with the LPO! Again, free! (If it’s free, it’s for me!)
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