Fountains Added to Central Park

With the very slow remodeling of Atenas Central Park being done totally by city employees and not an outside contractor, this multi-year project keeps surprising people and this one was not in the initial architect’s drawings of the remodeled park. For the new southwest corner entrance to the square block park, there is now a pair of modern fountains with a hint of historical reflection on the Stone Spheres of Costa Rica (Wikipedia link) and even though the sidewalk is still not completed, the two fountains have been dedicated and are functioning, though you can’t enter the park through this entrance yet! 🙂 Here’s 3 of my cellphone photos plus someone else’s night photo from the dedication I didn’t know about. And to my friend who was hoping they would add a fountain to the park, you got two! 🙂 Though I realize you were wanting an old fashion fountain like in the center of Alajuela’s Central Park. But hey! We have prehistoric stone spheres spritzing water like no other park in Costa Rica! 🙂

Stone Sphere Water Fountains, Atenas Central Park, Costa Rica
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Park Renovation Update

I’ve recently learned that much of the park renovation is being paid for by volunteer donations as the city budget was greatly hurt by the pandemic. And all the work is being done by park employees rather than an expensive contractor, so I guess the slowness is to be expected and maybe praised for a job well done without much means.

After the celebration of the park entrance sign and flagpoles, they finally started again by blocking off another wedge of the park with the ugly tin construction fence. It is the area where we’ve had a children’s playground. They’ve removed all the old playground equipment and dug up the brick sidewalk in preparation for another modern cement sidewalk with I assume the trademark low walls for sitting as a replacement for park benches. There will likely be an additional sitting area for parents watching their children play. This sidewalk radiates from the central circular kiosk to the SE corner of the park. Once the concrete work is done I assume they will then install the new playground equipment and another section of remodeling will be completed. I doubt that even they know how long it will take. Here’s 3 photos to show what they’ve started . . .

Construction fence around the playground section of park while people still use the other spaces including the central kiosk partially shown here.
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Park Sign at Night + Other New Views

Here are more views of the new Central Park Sign including a selfie and what it looks like at night and from behind! 🙂 My earlier reports on the sign did not include the finished product at night or from behind! 🙂

At night your eyes see the color of the art on the letters and thus not as bright as this white in my camera. And that white spot in middle of sun is yellow to your eyes, though still bright! 🙂
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My Park Disappointment This Morning

I went early at 8:30 for what I understood would be an “unveiling” of the new ATENAS park sign and what they were calling a “dedication ceremony.” Nada! After nearly 2 hours downtown I picked up my photos I had left earlier to be printed across from the park and Sr. Chacón there told me that they would not unveil the ATENAS letters until 7 pm tonight (probably in the rain) and I will not go back! I was there mainly to get a photo of the Atenas sign, so I was disappointed! I walked home with my new photos and will maybe go tomorrow to photograph the sign.

!Then the only programming on the stage for the first two hours was the main Evangelical church here in town performing charismatic music like in a charismatic worship service and a hand full of vendors (more like a flea market) – both also disappointing to me. The stage will have more and different kinds of music throughout the day, which is what the city does with all of these all-day fiestas they sponsor, but after I learned the sign would not be un-covered, I got my photos and walked home. 🙂 I will photograph it tomorrow and post just that photo. 🙂

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Big Unveiling Tomorrow Morning

At 9 am tomorrow (Saturday 30 May 2022) the city is unveiling and “dedicating” the new entrance to Central Park Atenas, even though the renovations are not nearly complete nor will be for some time. They will remove the black plastic from the ATENAS sign and the park workers have been busy trying to get ready! They’ve laid some new grass in that area and have flower there to plant before tomorrow, plus they are taking down that ugly tin construction fence and are re-painting the white skirts around all the trees in the whole park. Plus tents are going up for the typical fiesta day vendors and when I asked at city hall the time of the ceremony (9am) they made sure I knew that there would be live music Saturday night! 🙂 Maybe we really are getting over Covid! Though masks are still required in all public places – even tomorrow! 🙂 And we still have to wash our hands upon entry to all businesses.

Here’s 5 shots made yesterday (Thursday) that indicate they are preparing for tomorrow!

The focal point sign will be unveiled tomorrow morning.
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Central Park Entrance Plaza?

In today’s “tiny update” on the renovation of Atenas Central Park, I’m revealing something that I suspected earlier but was not in the architect’s drawings. This northwest corner of the park is the first park sighting visitors will have if they come into Central Atenas from Highway 3, Alajuela or anywhere north of Atenas (thanks to one-way streets) and is thus a good spot to welcome visitors to Central Park at 0 Street and 1st Avenue. Those coming from Highway 27, the beach/San Jose expressway will see the park first on the other side by the central Catholic Church on Central Avenue (0 Avenue) at 1st Street.

In my first photo you see that lines lead from the corner to a concrete structure of steps/seats that could seat a whole tour bus load of tourists for a group photo. On top of that, now covered in black plastic wrap, are six large cutout letters spelling A T E N A S. From my peek on the other side they are a bright red that look like plastic or metal from a distance. And if you look closely in the photo you see that along the top of the concrete structure, carved into it and painted white, is the promotional slogan of Atenas, “El Mejor Clima del Mundo.” or in English: “The Best Weather in the World.”

Incidentally, this corner of park is across the street from the city hall! 🙂 One taxi driver told me it was the fault of the current mayor that the park is progressing so slowly. 🙂 I think it is because of a lack of money and thus all work is being done by city employees, usually just 2 or 3 workers at a time. Covid affected every budget and every activity!

Hopefully there will soon be a lot of landscaping in and around this corner feature! It will certainly be the most photographed corner of the park! 🙂

Entrance Plaza on NW Corner of Atenas Central Park.

Read on for two more photos of the above from behind . . .

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