Beat the Heat: Veteran’s Oasis Park

Wading at Veteran’s Oasis Park

It’s January, time to order clothes in the next size up from the post holiday sales. I just unpacked new water shoes and Crocs that I picked up from 6PM.com.

What am I doing with water shoes? Well after a few ill advised and disappointing forays (don’t ask me about the drainage ditch/pink eye 1-2 punch, remember I do the research so you don’t have to) we found a place to wade. My critera for a good place to wade:

  • creek
  • nearby
  • free
  • accessible

I moved here from the East Coast where I took things like soft plants and moisture for granted. Then I came here and was so lonely for a creek. I even googled “Queen Creek” to find out where it was, only to learn that Queen Creek was named after a mine, not a body of water. Bummer!

The Veteran’s Oasis Park at Chandler Heights and Lindsay is a wonderland of play. This park is my favorite park for all reasons and all seasons. They have a beautiful Air Conditioned Visitors Center. The Visitors Center makes a morning summer visit fun with a small exhibit of spiders and snakes and educational material to read. A low table for puzzles and nature toys are out for your little ones, bring your own toys or project to extend the visit. The visitor center also has bathrooms, a small shop (we bought a bento style Laptop Lunchbox here) and friendly staff. They have a full slate of activities, check the website to see what is going on–the calendar is posted on pdf that changes each month so I won’t link to it here. I plan to come on Earth Day for sure!

The new desert tortoise enclosure, best time to see the tortoises is at 8 or 9 AM when the weather is hot

In the evening this is another good place for dinner outside. There are covered Ramadas and picnic areas around the urban fishing lake. (that’s right, you can fish here, just need a license). Wide concrete pathways are good for riding big wheels. Low undulating walls for climbing (and falling off) surround sand pits. You can bring digging toys, riding toys, your camera and don’t forget the fish and birds. The park is recognized as a Certified Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. This is a great honor. One of my dreams is to turn our backyard into a habitat.

The Bento Lunchboxes and much more in the Owl’s Nest Nature store

But back to the water shoes. We like to venture to the back of the park. There is a little creek running downhill full of slippery rocks to dig and climb on. Messy, splashy fun! I have a few places I like to go to beat the heat and this is one of them.

If you don’t feel like wading, a fun way to introduce the park to children is to take the Veteran’s Oasis Park Nature Quest Challenge.

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