Esther Short Park, Vancouver

4.4
#1 of 9 in Parks in Vancouver
Esther Short Park is a public park and town square located in downtown Vancouver, Washington. Established in 1853, it is the oldest public park in the state of Washington. and one of the oldest public parks in the West.It is located in the city's downtown between West Columbia and 8th Street. It was bequeathed to the city in 1862, and includes a children's playground, a rose garden, a large fountain system made of columnar basalt, a bell/clock tower, and the historic Slocum House. The park also houses a weekend farmer's market. In the summer of 2007, the park hosted over 30 outdoor summer concerts, many free.Esther ShortEsther Short was an early Vancouver resident, whose husband Amos and ten children "jumped a claim" near present-day downtown Vancouver. This land was originally part of a larger land plot by American Henry Williamson, who mapped out a little town called Vancouver City and registered the claim in the US courthouse in Oregon City. He left his caretaker, David Gardner, in-charge of the land before leaving for California. During a dispute, Amos Short killed Gardner, though he was acquitted of any crime. Short used his courtroom experience to become a judge and claim the disputed land for himself. He died during a return voyage from selling local produce in San Francisco. With Williamson's registered claim intact, Esther Short filed papers to claim the land. Ultimately, she obtained part of the land (including the parcel which includes present-day Esther Short Park), along with the Catholic Church and Vancouver City. She also gave permission to use house ferry boats to land on her property, at the foot of present-day Washington Street, where she operated a restaurant and hotel called The Alta House.
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Esther Short Park Reviews
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563 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • Well maintained park with lots of fun week d activities.Sat and Sunday markets are fun.Summer concerts are awesome!  more »
  • Great festival.. Many local winners and beer vendors.. About 59 other Crafters wity their wares.. Loved DJs Jewelry..a local artist  more »
  • We had a blast at the reusable art fair - tons of vendors and lots of things to see. Parking situation wasn’t great, we ended up in a nearby parking garage - but overall fun time  more »
Google
  • The park itself is very nice. Theres a spot for kids to play and lots of room to walk around. I gave it a 2 star because the homeless people are taking it over. They are doing god knows what in the restroom a man dressed in all black waited for 10min or so for his buddy to let him in and I'm not sure how long they stayed in there. The gazebo has all the homless stuff in it and people sleeping on the lawn. Also right where the children play a couple of homeless women were fighting but everyone acts like its normal so my advice is to be careful if you go. If I ever go back I'll take pictures of it but I took a few of the clock statue its really cool
  • It's a very fun park! I went there 3 years ago, and it brings lots of memories! One of the best parks ever, and it's very fun.
  • My son loves coming here. It's great on the weekends when the farmers market it open. Good food, local vendors, fun for the whole family any age.
  • Easy parking around the park. Central area near shops, restaurants and in season - the Farmer's Market. Nice place for a walk. Pretty in spring and fall.
  • Lots of stuff for the kids to do feel like this park would be better if it had a fence around it as it's pretty close to the road and there is lots of homeless activity so gotta keep your head on a swivel
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