You know me: I cannot possibly pass up a party. So today I am celebrating Park Day with my blog dog friends Finn & Charley Too and Gizmo of Terrier Torrent fame. They asked all of their friends in the great blog dog world to go out into the real word, visit a park, and share their experience with the cyber world on this very special day. Now, before I get started, I have a slight clarification. I know the lovely badge for this day says “I hiked for Park Day.” Technically, I did not hike. You may recall that my humans and I had a bit of a Big Easy late night, so my “hike” was more of a “leisurely stroll,” but I think my visit still qualifies. So let’s get started with the tour!
It is my pleasure to welcome you to New Orleans’ beautiful Audubon Park. When you visit Audubon Park, chances are I will not be there to greet you, but I can assure you that the Gumbel Memorial Fountain, installed in 1918 at the park’s St. Charles Avenue entrance, will be there.
The site of Audubon Park began its public life as home to The World’s Industrial and Cotton Centennial Exposition of 1884. (That was Louisiana’s first world’s fair. One hundred years later, New Orleans hosted The 1984 World’s Fair: Louisiana World Exposition.) In 1886, the city changed the park’s name from Upper City Park to Audubon Park to honor John James Audubon, who painted many of his “Birds of America” in Louisiana. A few years later, city leaders hired landscape architect Charles Olmsted, whose family developed New York City’s Central Park, to create an urban oasis in Uptown New Orleans.
And what a beautiful oasis it is. Century-old oak trees are decorated with Spanish moss and resurrection fern . . .
. . . and cypress trees with their little stumps line a central lagoon.
Audubon Park welcomes canine visitors who are attached by a leash to their humans. (Yes, I know, in each of these photos I was not exactly “attached” to my human, but that was special for the photos; I promise you that the entire time we were walking, one end of the leash was attached to my collar and the other end was attached to my human mommy’s hand.)
There are special fountains where humans and their dogs can drink side-by-side . . .
. . . but I highly recommend taking a little sip from that lovely fountain at the park’s entrance . . . if you’re a dog.
A 1.8 mile jogging/walking/biking/pretty-much-anything-but-driving path circles through the park.
Along the way, you’ll catch several glimpses of the Audubon Park Golf Course. The park is also home to a pool, stables, tennis courts, playgrounds, and the Audubon Zoo.
Just before the path brings you back to the park’s entrance, there is a pretty little spot to stop and enjoy a view of Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Church. The church is on the campus of Loyola University, which, along with Tulane University, is located across St. Charles Avenue from Audubon Park. This is the perfect place to pause and reflect on all that you have seen during a lovely leisurely stroll through beautiful Audubon Park in New Orleans, Louisiana. I sincerely hope that you have enjoyed your virtual visit!