Of parks and other pleasures
The days of Irvine being but a beige suburb with little new going on are past; those who don’t realize it are out of touch.
Most people who live and work in Irvine are proud of the place. Still, we chuckle a bit when folks, many of them long-time residents who should know better, complain that there aren’t more lawns, gardens and walking paths in the Great Park.
Passive uses, they’re called. Now, those who don’t know that the Great Park is already a fine place to bike, stroll, visit a museum, play and picnic just aren’t paying attention.
And with each new phase, the Great Park is only getting better.
When it comes to passive pleasures in the great outdoors, let’s get real: we already have it better here than most anywhere in Southern California. Irvine already has some 5,200 acres of open space and wild lands in and around us as part of the Irvine Open Space Preserve, with a couple of thousand acres promised.
Those who yearn for vast areas of green lawn must not have been to Mason Regional Park recently. At 339 acres, it has a lake, three playgrounds, walking and biking paths, bridges, a butterfly garden and more, all in the heart of the city. Irvine Regional Park, which isn’t in Irvine but should be given its origins, is 475 acres. It has a zoo and a railroad, to name but two of its amenities.
And don’t get us started on the Pacific Ocean. It’s nice, too.
Let’s take a moment to appreciate how lucky we are to have access to parks and other places to engage in outdoor exploits and adventures, both active and passive. Here’s to summer, and here’s to Irvine: the most exceptional city in Southern California.