Esther Short Park, Vancouver

4.4
#1 of 7 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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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
533 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • Very Close to the Vancouver Farmers Market, this market is full of life, food, vegetables, fruit, desserts and wonderful people that grow this produce and those that cook the great food that is there ...  more »
  • Great event for family to participate, it is a great place year round. I would encourage people to attend the music in the summer time.  more »
  • This downtown Vancouver WA Park is beautifuly done to give it that small town family friendly atmosphere. We’ve been to many Activities in this park & they’re usually small town quaint done with big c...  more »
Google
  • It's a nice park most of the time. A lot of times the bathrooms are unsafe or not clean. There are some shady looking people walking around the kid playground. But they have live free music during summer, and different events throughout the year. Very beautiful during day, but would not recommend at night
  • I love living by the park. There is always something going on there. In the summer there are time of events and concerts. In the fall I see quite a few people posing for photos. It's a great place to walk your dog and it's close to 1/4 mile around the park. There is also a great playground.
  • I want to give this another star, but there's been a lot of homeless and shady looking people the last couple times I took my daughter during the middle of the day. Plus that recent pop up protest I heard about in the news, scary. But, Super cute park!! Nice little playground, beautiful rose garden right near it, cute statues and a Starbucks with in walking distance to keep mommy happy.
  • This is a very nice well maintained park. It really is one of the jewels of Vancouver. There is always something going on. Farmer's market, the Hawaiian festival, Christmas festival are huge events. There are also weekly concerts and movies in the summer. There is a group of homeless who hang out, but they are usually harmless and the will leave you alone.
  • Great water feature when it's hot, but there's an increasing number of homeless there that converge in the early mornings and evenings. The park is alright, and the farmer's market is quaint, but there are other parks without the feeling of tent city.

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