Program Names Bismarck as Most Playful - KMOT.COM - Minot, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Program Names Bismarck as Most Playful

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From quiet peaceful parks, to crazy jungle gyms filled with kid, Bismarck has no shortage of outdoor spaces. And that's what's making the city such a playful place.

"For the fifth time, KaBoom! Playful City program, has named Bismarck, North Dakota a "Playful City U.S.A,'" says Parks and Rec employee Greg Smith.

So what does "playful city" actually mean?

"Free playgrounds, hiking trails, soccer fields, baseball diamonds, you name it," says Smith. "All of which are accessible for children to play. We encourage them to be outside and participate in the great outdoors of North Dakota."

So by now you get it, we've got a lot of parks. But Smith says it's not just about the quantity.

"We try to have parks within a half mile of just about anyone's home in the city of Bismarck," says Smith. "They have to have a sidewalk or trail that leads to them. The play opportunities have to be available free of charge, or they should be ideally."

Alicia Nehl works at the Elks Pool near Custer Park, which does have a cost, but is pretty inexpensive. And she says when Mother Nature cooperates, the pool turns in to "kid central".

"When it's nice and warm out, we have full capacity about everyday and it's just a fun environment for the kids to come," says Nehl. "And their parents can relax and know that they're safe in a place like this."

And Smith says he hopes this achievement will attract newcomers to Bismarck, like kids to a tire swing.

"Visitors from other states do look at that as being another qualifier to a place they want to visit. Or hopefully live," says Smith.

So, whether you've been a local you're whole life or you're new to the Bismarck area, it's pretty clear to see that when it comes to parks we've got plenty to play with.


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