This post is sponsored by TD and the TD Common Ground Project

The magic of childhood for the two of us was led by our imagination. Reuben grew up on an Alberta farm, and Brie, on a wild, rugged piece of land on Vancouver Island, near the ocean. Although we came from different places, our experiences were somewhat similar – all we needed was space, and wilderness. In those days, technology wasn’t nearly as prevalent; there were no iPhones, no iPads, and TV was strictly limited in our households. We didn’t know it then, but it was the best. Our favourite times were spent wandering though the local forests and fields, making forts, creating our own games, and letting our imagination run free. We didn’t necessarily need swings, slides or monkey bars. We climbed on rocks and balanced on logs, made toys out of sticks and stones that we found. Those days are long gone, and today’s children seem to be missing that kind of stimulation; the opportunity to use their creativity and innovation to build a childhood that’s all their own.

When we were approached to showcase Forsyth Park, a new project TD is funding in the municipality of Surrey, we were intensely inspired by their vision and the memories of our youth. This “natural style” park will be one of seven major TD funded green space revitalization projects of the TD Common Ground Project, where TD is supporting 150+ grassroots initiative in recognition of Canada’s 150th birthday. A “natural style” park is exactly what you’d imagine. Instead of putting another artificial playground on this newly converted parkland – stark, sterile and uninspired with everything locked into place – they will be building a fun, warm and friendly park which will consist of only natural elements. The kids who will be using this park will be motivated to play with the sand, vegetation, water, rocks, logs and trees that will be set up in such a way to encourage both physical and imaginative play. This natural parkland is comprised of a mix of open meadow and second growth forest, with room for pathways and trails, and an extensive dog off-leash area. The land has beautiful patches of mature cedar and birch trees, and the goal is to work with them to preserve a forested feel – a true escape to nature in an urban realm. Within Forsyth Park, TD is funding a 1.5 acre section designed and dedicated for the nature play space for children. The objective is to establish Forsyth Park as the heart of the neighbourhood, a place where the community can gather to enjoy the outdoors. This development showcases the positive evolution of Surrey City Centre overall, and we’re so thrilled to be witnessing this change. The park will be closed during landscaping and the grand opening is scheduled for Fall of 2017.

To find out more about the proposal for Forsyth Park and to see the park concept plan, visit:

 http://www.surrey.ca/culture-recreation/2076.aspx and www.commongroundsproject.td.com

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