Brewery leaders want people to use public exercise equipment that was installed last fall in the city’s Veterans Park and hasn’t been widely used.
They hope warmer weather and an upcoming festival along the city’s popular Riverwalk, its riverside walking path, will spark interest in the new gear.
The exercise equipment was installed last September at the corner of State and Penobscot streets, near the Riverwalk. Up to 20 people at a time can use the equipment, which includes a balance rope, sit-up bench, monkey bars, pull-up stations and a chain ladder.
Machias Savings Bank donated $35,000 to sponsor the project, and Brewer authorized $43,000 to purchase and install the equipment.
Although local personal trainers attended the groundbreaking ceremony last September to show people how to use the equipment, Renee Doble, Brewer’s assistant director of economic development, said interest in the park had waned little. soon after.
Doble said the city feels a growing need for more things to do outdoors as people turn to outdoor recreation during the COVID-19 pandemic. The installation of the exercise equipment was a way “to encourage people to get out and exercise and maybe go shopping downtown, take a walk along the Riverwalk or visit one of the restaurants,” Doble said.
No city department tracks the number of people using it, Doble said, but the area is under police surveillance.
Doble said she thinks people may have stayed away because they don’t know how to use it, or just don’t know it’s there and available to the public.
“I know it was in the news last fall, but hopefully we can bring more attention to it when we do the Riverwalk Festival,” Doble said. “We hope that as the weather improves and people see other people using it, there will be more interest in it.”
Local personal trainers will hold demonstrations at the Fitness Park during the city’s Riverwalk Festival on Saturday, June 4. The celebration along the city’s Riverwalk – a mile-long paved path that follows the Penobscot River – will also include food trucks, children’s activities, a craft fair, live shows and fireworks.
Although the exercise park is considered part of the city’s Riverwalk, it is separated from the main path by an apartment building. That slight separation could be part of the reason the equipment hasn’t seen heavy use, said Adam Clark, owner of Adam Clark Fitness in Brewer.
Clark said he and fellow personal trainer Amy Curry have brought clients to the park and hope to see more people using it as the weather warms.
Videos showing how to use fitness equipment for upper body, core, and lower body workouts are available on the city’s website. Users can also scan a nearby QR code reader with their smartphone to view equipment instructions.
While adults may have stayed away from the park since it opened, Doble said the city doesn’t want the park to attract many children because the busy street corner isn’t the place. safest for them to play unsupervised.