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Frank Charry Park

“[Frank Charry Park was] transformed into a very unique and innovative park . . . an asset to the East End, adding spark and life to the character of the neighbourhood."
Lakehead Living, Thunder Bay, November 1, 1978.

Where: Off Pacific Avenue, between McBain and Hargrave Streets Size: Approximately 3.4 acres
Created: Purchased in 1947 as East End Park, dedicated as Frank Charry Park in 1975
Major Features:
  • Winter ice rink, constructed annually since 1950
  • Wooden storage house, built 1968
  • Children's playground: 2 sets of swings, 1 see-saw, 1 slide, 1 wading pool, installed c. 1950-1960 
  • Turf/asphalt basketball court, 1950-1960 
  • Baseball diamond with backstop, 1950-1960 
Land Acquired:

In 1947, the Board of Education sold the land to the City of Fort William for the nominal sum of $1.

Land Usage: Neighbourhood Park

 

Each image in the slideshow is a link to original records and more information.


Historical Highlights:

  • On July 6, 1915, the Governor and Company of Adventurers of England Trading into Hudson's Bay (Hudson's Bay Company) sold the land to the Board of Education of the City of Fort William, for the sum of $3250.

  • In 1947, the land was sold to the City of Fort William for $1, after a decision was made not to use it for a school.

  • In April 1949, the Winter Carnival Committee of the City of Fort William expressed an interest in installing five wading pools into Fort William parks. One of these was designated for the East End Park.

  • "During the summers attempts were made at beautification by dumping tin cans and fill on the swampy land and by landscaping." (Fort William Parks Board Minutes, 1953)

  • In 1968, a small building with a washroom, change area, and storage room was constructed.

  • In the 1950s and 1960s, the East End Athletic Association used East End Park as a practice area for baseball, softball, hockey, and bowling. During this time, the Fort William American Little League also used the East End Park.

  • On August 14, 1975, the park was officially named after Frank Charry, who had been a prominent citizen and alderman for the City of Fort William from 1933 until his death in 1943. The park was renamed on the suggestion of Bill Beavis. Immediately following the ceremony, the first pitch of a Fort William American Little League baseball game was thrown by Rocky Charry.

  • Between 1978 and 1980, the City of Thunder Bay spent $299,733 on site development and landscaping: a new all-season asphalt rink was installed, the playground was updated, a water play area was built, and a bicycle path was installed (in the winter it was flooded and used for pleasure skating).


 

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