Rec Room: Best things in life are free

July 4, 2011 at 2:04 a.m.

By Shane Simon

With more Texans taking advantage of staycations, and the fact that the out-of-school kids are bored to tears with the summer time blues, it is no surprise that our local parks are experiencing tremendous usage from many residents.

Riverside Park, located along the beautiful Guadalupe River between Vine and Stayton streets, offers something for everyone. Visitors immediately look for the basics in any park, especially when children are in tow and it doesn't get any more basic than open space, trails and playgrounds.

With a little imagination, open space can be used for a variety of games and activities such as hide and seek or capture the flag. It seems so simple but there is a reason for the old adage "the best things in life are free." Playgrounds are free and accessible entertainment that allow children to run, climb and swing away all the energy that we wish we still had.

Riverside Park offers two playground areas and what seems like unending open space and hiking trails.

The next level of entertainment is also free but may require specialized equipment. Riverside Park has practice ball fields for pick-up games, the duck pond for fishing, 21 holes of disc golf for friendly competition and a certified kayak trail on the Guadalupe that runs the length of the park.

The third level of entertainment is available for a small fee and worth every penny. Riverside Stadium is home to the Victoria Generals whose season is in full swing now and continues through the summer months. The games are family friendly and they even offer fun games between certain innings.

Riverside Golf Course is nestled in the middle of the park. It is a great place to relax with a buddy or discuss business over a round of golf.

Riverside Park is also fortunate to have an award-winning zoo. The Texas Zoo offers visitors the opportunity to see native and foreign animals.

Riverside Park is also host to special events throughout the year such as 5K runs, barbecue cook-offs, concerts and festivals.

So, the next time your children complain that they are bored and have nothing to do, touch them on the arm, tell them "tag - your it" and then let them chase you around Riverside and enjoy all that this park has to offer.

Shane Simon is the recreation services manager for the Victoria Parks and Recreation Department. Contact him at 361-485-3200 or or follow us on Facebook at Victoria Parks Recreation.



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