Awen’ Waterplay

Collingwood – 2023

The Awen’ Waterplay is a unique children’s waterplay experience located on the shores of Georgian Bay in Harbourview Park, Collingwood. Adjacent to the Awen’ Gathering Place, the waterplay is a component of a park environment that recognizes the First Nations presence along South Georgian Bay.

Awen’ is the Wendat word for ‘water’ and is the unifying element shared by all living things and cultures. Guided by elder Dr. Duke Redbird, water is celebrated through the water cycle’s interpretive story, represented by a river with 3 distinct waterplay spaces: the Falls, Rapids, and Marsh. Through a series of play events ranging from flowing water channels, exploding geysers and jets, evaporation misters, and rain, the water cycle story is told.  At the center is an impressive waterfall that displays a Thunderbird art piece designed by Dr. Redbird and his son Jay Bell Redbird. In the final sequence, the waterfall recedes to reveal the Thunderbird spirit, symbolizing upstream storms and the restarting the cycle. Unique custom art features (Beaver, Heron, Bullfrog) incorporate activator buttons to initiate the programmed events.

Within a new accessible washroom building, the waterplay includes a custom water treatment and recirculation system that delivers an impressive 150,000 – 250,000 gallons/day of play value. The site also offers various seating/supervision areas, outdoor change rooms, showers, USB charging, and a water bottle fill station.  With a total construction value of $2.5M, the waterplay opened to the public in the fall of 2023.

Services Provided

Concept Design

Design Development


Graphic Visualization

Site Planning

Consensus Building


Construction Drawings

Cost Estimating



Contract Administration

Construction Review