What's more fun than a rubber chicken?
It's a constant reminder, every now and then, to take life a little less seriously and enjoy the company of family, friends and neighbours.
The toy is set to be included in new activity kits for Coquitlam residents that successfully apply to host a neighbourhood block party this year as the city is bringing the program back in time for summer.
In a release today (May 27), Coquitlam cultural services manager Karen Basi says $150 cash grants are available, as well as free liability insurance and new "add-ons."
Last year, $300 grants were offered by way of the city's former Community Support and Recovery Plan as it continued to recover from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"Block parties are fun neighbourhood social events that can range from a potluck meal in someone’s yard or home to a larger event involving multiple families from the street or complex," Basi explains.
"As residents return to gathering in person, block parties can provide an opportunity to reconnect with neighbours, build new friendships and create a sense of community."
If granted, the money is earmarked for help pay costs related to food, supplies, equipment rentals and entertainment, to which the city encourages interested applicants to utilize local businesses for help.
Along with the rubber chicken, the play kits consist of balls, cones, frisbees and jump ropes.
As well, Basi says the City of Coquitlam is introducing its Tree Spree program to neighbourhood block parties.
The tree-planting initiative is set to provide more than 150 free trees, with experts set to join the block parties this year to demonstrate how to plant and take care of them.
"Coquitlam Tree Spree is a tree-planting initiative and public-education program with the overall purpose of recognizing and promoting the value of the City’s tree canopy," reads the city's description of the program.
"Whether on public or private land, Coquitlam’s trees offer many benefits for our health, well-being and the environment. In 2022, the Tree Spree’s inaugural year, volunteers, staff and residents will plant 10,000 trees—double the City’s typical tree-planting target—in both public spaces and private properties throughout the community."
Residents can also request road closures for cul-de-sacs, lanes and neighbourhood roads, if needed.
If fireworks are in the plan, interested participants must obtain a permit from Coquitlam Fire Rescue and music must be turned off by 10 p.m.
Those looking to earn a block party grant must meet the following criteria, according to the city:
- You must be a Coquitlam resident
- The block party must be hosted for adjacent neighbours
- Submit an application at least 10 days in advance
- Provide a post-event evaluation with three photos within two weeks after the party
- Properly dispose of recyclables and garbage after the event
For more information, you're encouraged to visit the block party page of the City of Coquitlam website.