Crook County On The Move and Crook County Rotary Club have just finished their latest installment of Age Friendly Park Benches in Prineville. There are now 10 new park benches at the Prineville Wetland that makes two loops of the Wetlands more accessible. “These benches are for people who are just getting started with an exercise or program, are recovering from and illness or injury, or like to know there is a place to sit whenever they get tired while walking” says Carol Benkosky, Project Coordinator.
The benches are placed every 300 feet, are made of comfortable plastic seating and have handrails both on the ends and the middle to aid in standing. There is also space next to each bench for wheelchairs, so everyone can take a break and enjoy watching the birds and being outdoors. The two loops allow for short .3 mile walks or up to .7 mile walks if you take the outer loop. “If funding can be found we would love to add more widely spaced benches that allow people to graduate to longer walks while knowing there will still be a place to rest if needed” she added.
The Wetlands benches could not have been accomplished without support from the City of Prineville, particularly Jason Wood, who was such a wonderful partner during the process. He and his crews stepped up during the Covid-19 shut down to build the benches and install the pads while Rotarians were in lockdown. Funding for the benches came from Rotary Club of Crook County, Rotary District 5110 and from a donor who wishes to remain anonymous. A partnership between Rotary and Crook County On The Move, these same park benches can be found along the 1.5 mile Ochoco Creek Pathway and at the Splash Pad. Donna Barnes, Crook County On The Move’s Chair, points out that “Adding a simple brisk daily walk into our lifestyle helps us stay mentally, emotionally and physically healthy. These benches make it easier for us to build consistent daily activity into our life and walking is the perfect way to enjoy friendships and nature while we reach that goal.”