Community support is sought for an outdoor gym in Stratford Park on all wheels

The founder and developer of Stratford’s All Wheel Park is looking to raise $110,000 to build an outdoor gym on the northwest corner of Shakespeare Park.

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The next phase of development of Stratfords All-Wheel Park will be aimed at creating a free, accessible and welcoming space for residents of all ages and abilities to exercise outdoors.

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After recently receiving approval from the city, All-Wheels Park founder and developer Bruce Whittaker has launched a fundraising campaign with a goal of $110,000, for which Whittaker will match every dollar raised to purchase equipment and install an outdoor gym. on the northwest corner. at Stratford’s Shakespeare Park, directly adjacent to the All-Wheel Pump Parkway.

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We’ve had five phases (of development) so far, Whittaker said. The first was the skatepark. We had the pump track, we had the toddler and bike section, we had the skatepark expansion and then we had the rain gardens. So the next stage will be the gym. The interesting thing about the Wheel Park community is that we’ve seen it evolve where it started as just skateboarders, and then it grew to include bikers, and then we’ve seen young kids learning from the older kids, and now they’re starting to see parents who are they hang out there because they have become more comfortable.

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So the idea became: Why can’t this be a family park where adults can do something too?

Aimed at anyone looking to get in shape, the gym will be based on the concept of calisthenics, a form of exercise that uses a person’s body weight and, at most, requires only basic equipment. For this outdoor gym, Whittaker hopes to purchase and install equipment with little or no maintenance requirements, such as exercise benches, push-up and pull-up bars, and parallel bars. The hall will also be built among the trees in the parks to provide shade and relief from the heat in summer. Whittaker also consults with Stratford’s accessibility advisory committee to provide equipment that can be used by as many people as possible.

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“I was having coffee at Balzac this morning and I mentioned this to a gentleman who is 66 years old, and he said, ‘Wow, I’m going to use that,'” Whittaker said. And that’s the whole idea. We want the park to be diverse. We don’t want the park to be old. We want the park to be a place where you can come in and not be closed off. It is open to the community. We’ve always promoted it as the center of our city, and that’s what we want it to become something that everyone can use and enjoy.

Whittaker said he will partner with a local charity in the coming weeks to ensure donations to the outdoor gym are eligible for charitable tax receipts. In the meantime, he said anyone who wants to know more or inquire about supporting the cause can contact him via email at

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