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Cherry Hill / Cherry Park Neighbourhood in Kitchener
Welcome to another exciting edition of WRX Property Group’s ongoing examination of the neighbourhoods of Kitchener-Waterloo. Today, we’ll be heading once more to Downtown Kitchener to discuss one of its lovely little neighbourhoods. In case you weren’t aware, Kitchener’s downtown region is subdivided into several smaller neighbourhoods, but with groups such as the Kitchener Downtown Neighbourhood Alliance (Kitchener DNA), there is a strong sense of interconnectedness. Today’s neighbourhood is: Cherry Hill (also sometimes known as Cherry Park). Let’s check it out!
Cherry Hill’s a somewhat oddly-shaped neighbourhood – it resembles the head of a cobra, according to some experts. Its boundaries are made up approximately by Glasgow Street in the north, then King Street down to Victoria Street and Victoria Street down to West Avenue in the east, Highland Road in the south, and Belmont Avenue in the west. It’s located northeast of the downtown core, and it shares a border with two fellow members of the Downtown Neighbourhood Alliance: Mount Hope Huron Park and Victoria Park. This is a well-established neighbourhood, with most of the homes constructed before 1980. Travelling along its streets, you’ll find many redbrick facades, mature trees, spacious sidewalks, and several low-rises. For the most part, prices in this neighbourhood range between $300 000 and $500 000. Please feel free to contact WRX Property Group at any time to find out more – we’re happy to help.
Being right next to Kitchener’s downtown core means there is always lots to do for Cherry Hill residents. Up and down King Street West, and the streets in its general vicinity, are more shops, restaurants, and attractions than you could count with all your fingers and toes. Put simply, downtown Kitchener has a bit of everything. To give two quick examples: Pho Rua Vang Golden Turtle, a delicious Vietnamese restaurant, and Ziggy’s Cycle & Sport, one of Kitchener-Waterloo’s finest places for bike enthusiasts ever since they opened in 1985 (they won the 2013 Canadian Independent Bicycle Retailer of the Year award!) There are several shopping opportunities within Cherry Hill, too, including the delightfully-named Swanson’s Home Hardware Building Centre (delightful for fans of Parks and Recreation, that is), Schreiter’s (a German, family-owned furniture store that’s been in Kitchener since 1892), and Kishki World Foods (an independent butcher shop that specializes in products from all around the world – from the Mediterranean to Pakistan, the Middle East to the West Indies, and more – and offers halal meats). Along Highland Road West, there are many larger chain stores, as well, including banks, fast food, Shoppers Drug Mart, and two grocery chains (Sobeys and Food Basics).
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In the centre of Cherry Hill are two parks: Cherry Park and Raddatz Park. Raddatz Park is a wonderful place for a reflective stroll, with lush, green forested areas, a playground for the neighbourhood kids, and a wonderful community garden (Willow Green Extension Garden). The community garden has a gated, wooden fence and multiple plots, and it offers water, a communal bread oven, and herb beds at the Old Willow Green Community Garden (a bit further south of this one). Cherry Park is slightly smaller, but it has two baseball diamonds, and a long stretch of manicured grass. There are several trails in Cherry Hill, which connect side streets to one another and the two parks, so taking a nice stroll through the neighbourhood and enjoying the distinct brick houses and pleasant green areas is quite simple. And venture a little further south, and you’ll find the awe-inspiring Victoria Park.
Victoria Park is one of the best parts of downtown Kitchener. Kitchener-Waterloo residents know and love it, and newcomers to the region would do well to take a look for themselves. It’s a beautiful, large area, with trails, trees, and a seemingly never-ending lineup of activities and events.
Many (but not all) of the neighbourhoods in Kitchener-Waterloo have Neighbourhood or Community Associations. These are groups of residents that do a variety of things for their neighbourhoods, including but not limited to: organizing events and applying for grants. The Cherry Park Neighbourhood Association hosts events throughout the year, including perennial plant sales, community bread oven bakes (both fast and slow versions), and barbeques. They’re most famous for one event in particular, though: the annual Cherry Festival. Run out of Cherry Park, this free event has been held every year for the past ten years now (last year’s 10th annual Cherry Festival saw over 5000 attendees – the largest attendance of any Kitchener-Waterloo neighbourhood event). The Cherry Festival features live entertainment, including music, face-painting, mini-putt, rock climbing, a variety of vendors, and much more. Another integral part of the Cherry Festival is, of course, the cherries: a ‘cherry train’ that chugs along around the park, and the All Things Cherry Café has more cherry-flavoured goods than you could imagine; it must be seen – and then eaten/drank – to be believed.
Many of the downtown Kitchener neighbourhoods are fantastic places for families, and Cherry Hill is no different. Within (or just on the other side of) its borders are multiple schools, making it great for parents/guardians and kids alike. Within Cherry Hill is St. John’s elementary school, part of the Waterloo Catholic District School Board (WCDSB), which students will attend from Kindergarten to Grade 8. Students in the public school board (WRDSB) will attend J. F. Carmichael Public School, which is located near the intersection of Highland Road and Patricia Avenue, at the south of Cherry Hill. This school serves students from kindergarten to Grade 6, and it offers French Immersion starting in Grade 1. For Grades 7 and 8, they will attend Courtland Public School, which is a few minutes east of Cherry Hill (they are eligible for transportation).
For high school, Catholic students will attend Resurrection Catholic Secondary School, the newest Catholic school in Kitchener-Waterloo (buses are available). Students in the WRDSB will attend either Forest Heights Collegiate Institute or Kitchener-Waterloo Collegiate and Vocational Institute (KCI), depending on their location and needs (for example, students requiring English as a Second Language will attend Forest Heights, whereas students in French Immersion will attend KCI). Most Cherry Hill public students will attend KCI, though, which is located along the neighbourhood’s northeastern border. If you’d like to find out more about these high schools, check out the WRX articles about them here: Forest Heights & KCI.
Cherry Hill’s got a lot going on within, and very close to, its borders. And remember: cheery people love Cherry Hill!
Written by Will Kummer