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Park of the Canals

So awhile back we asked if you knew where this picture was taken:

Yes, it is The Park of the Canals.  In December, Marily and I had the privilege to write a few articles for the Gateway to the East Valley Magazine.  The editor, Megan Sterling, has always been a great support to us here at I Heart Mesa.  When she asked if we could write on a local gem, we knew Park of the Canals was a good fit.  And here is why:

The Hohokam people lived in the Salt River Valley between 300 BC and 1450 AD. In order to grow crops of beans, squash, corn, agave, and cotton they used primitive and basic tools to dig an elaborate canal system, spanning hundreds of miles.  (Just dig one hole in your backyard with a modern shovel and you will realize how difficult that must have been for the Hohokam people.)  After lying dry for over 400 years, in 1878 Mormon pioneer settlers with the Mesa Company began the work of clearing out part of these impressive canals in order to irrigate their own crops in the dry desert.  These canals are the reason that Mesa was able to thrive in the desert. 

Today what is left of these canals can be seen while visiting the 31 acre Park of the Canals located at 1710 N. Horne in Mesa. The park literally sits at the edge of the mesa for which this city is named. While at this park, take in the centuries old history of the area while walking amongst the canals, visit the quaint Brinton Desert Botanical Garden, play on the newly remodeled playground equipment, participate in the compass course, or enjoy a meal at the park by using the available grills and ramadas.  I know my family enjoyed a sunset picnic here.

In 1975, Park of the Canals was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Park of the Canals in located on the West side of Horn between Brown and McKellips.


stephanie said...

i live less than a mile from there, and i can't believe i've never been! will remedy that asap. thank you!

Our Paper Plates said...

We have been meaning to go for a while! We only live a couple of miles away, so it would be a perfect walk along the canals to get there! Tell me, is the park pretty clean?

iheartmesa said...

I hope you saw my message on FB, but when we have been there, the park was pretty clean. Last time, there was some red goop on the monkey bars, so we just stayed clear from there.

Dan Man said...

Does anyone know where Point A (the starting point) for the compass course is? The sign give all the coordinates, but without a start point it does not mean much.
Also -- where is the 100 foot pacing track?