Favourite outdoor gathering place
1. The Forks
2. Munson Park
3. Assiniboine Park
I’m a fairly new resident of Osborne Village, having just moved there this past summer. A week or so after my move, on my first bus ride to nearby West Broadway for a haircut, the 635 took me through the swanky and relatively unfamiliar-to-me Wellington Crescent strip. It was there that I caught my first glimpse of the idyllic Munson Park, nestled against the Assiniboine River.
I didn’t know anything about the park, which was originally the grounds of the home of the lawyer John Henry Munson. Munson moved to Winnipeg in 1881 and named his house Crescentwood, which eventually gave the neighbourhood its name. It was later bought by James A. Richardson. In 1976, the land was donated to the city by the Richardson family, and in 1984, it officially became a public park.
Ignorant to all of this, I just thought that it looked like a cute park. Fortuitously, that night, I had plans to get together with a friend, a Winnipeg expat who was in town visiting from their new home in Montreal. Out for a walk, I remarked as we approached Munson Park, “I spotted this place from the bus earlier. It looks pretty cozy.”
My friend, who is much more worldly than I, was aghast that I hadn’t spent any time there yet. Having lived in the Village years ago, they informed me that we had to go there. They guided me through all the twisty paths and found a perfect little nook in a clearing overlooking the river. We sat there while the sun went down while geese floated lazily down the river and the light eventually dimmed enough that we could no longer identify whether the rodents swimming by were beavers or muskrats.
It was a perfect introduction to this welcoming bit of green space. I’m glad other Winnipeggers seem to love it, too.
Published in Volume 76, Number 12 of The Uniter (December 2, 2021)