There were shouts of glee and little legs pedaling fast as toddlers enjoyed Puketawhero Park’s new Toddler Bike Track.
The track’s official opening was held on Wednesday. There was a ‘Pimp your Trike/Scooter/Bike’ competition, face painting, and a sausage sizzle.
This track is a part of the Eastside Youth Space.
The Mokoia Community Association worked alongside the Eastside Community Collective for this youth space and had strong support from the Rotorua Lakes Council.
They had spent the past few years discussing with young people what their space could look like and talking with the community.
They held workshops with Eastside schools about what they would like to see and took young people out to other youth spaces.
Christine Hutchison, Rotorua Lakes Council parks and recreation team community engagement advisor acknowledged the mothers, fathers, and grandparents who brought their children along to celebrate the opening of the track.
“It’s just perfect to see them actually use it and see it in action.”
“This is the community part of this space. We’ve had a partnership with them all the way along.”
Mokoia Community Association community-led manager Leigh Richards says it feels great that another project within the Eastside Youth Space is completed.
She says they would like to get some barbecues and have seating for them, as well as a shade that goes over the stage.
Rotorua East Lions member and coordinator for the East Lions’ Eastside Youth Space projects says he is sure there are plenty of playgrounds around for all ages, but few with so many activities in a small area like the Eastside Youth Space.
He says Rotorua East Lions members constructed the ‘Give Way’ sign and little shops on the Bike track.
David says they were grateful to Mokoia Intermediate which decided to have a painting competition for the design of the bakers’ shop and fruit/vegetable shop.
The winning design was replicated onto the structure.
He congratulates everyone who was involved in the bike track project.
Leigh says there has been a lot of collaboration around this project, including with Owhata Medical Centre, Plunket, Rotorua Lions East, Cyway Rotorua, Rotorua Bike Festival, Rotorua Lakes Council, Eastside Rotorua Child-Friendly and Eastside Community Collective.