Guided Tour: John F. Kennedy Park
Address: 860 Outremont Ave., corner Ducharme (view map)
Parking: Both meter and non-meter parking on surrounding streets.
Pool telephone: 514-495-6253
This fly-by-the-seat-of-our-pants outing turned out great. With minimal knowledge of the Outremont area (except, of course, Bilboquet ice cream on Bernard Ave.), we discovered John F. Kennedy park and pool, but more importantly, an uncommonly child-friendly bakery. Any place that offers the possibility of having coffee, croissants AND two minutes of peace and quiet is well worth a visit in my book. But first, the park.
Located on Outremont Ave., just off Van Horne Ave., John F. Kennedy Park is a great stop for non-Outremonters because it has all the essentials in a contained area. There’s a fenced-in playground, as well as a wading pool and regular-size swimming pool. Although the park is just off a busy urban street, it’s surrounded by trees and feels sheltered from the city.
The park-pool combination is great for young children on a hot day: they can warm up in the playground and cool off in the water, or vice versa. With lots of mature trees around, there are shaded areas at both the pool and the park. There are also on-site changing rooms and bathrooms.
Plan to treat kids to lunch
Top off an active morning with lunch at a child-friendly restaurant two minutes from the park: Mamie Clafouti. What looks like a simple bakery from the street has an upstairs seating area with couches and a bookshelf containing children’s games and books. The bakery sells sandwiches, quiche, salads (including couscous and pasta), as well as an unbelievable choice of goodies for dessert. It is definitely worth a visit – there is no air conditioning, but they have fans upstairs.