The two adjacent parks of Jack Cook Memorial Park and the larger, more ample Perrin Park are two very popular and widely used parks in the Taringa area. Jack Cook park hosts the Toowong Harriers Athletics Club hence has appropriate equipment for that purpose, such as a running track and nets along with a useful cricket pitch. There is good playground equipment and a small outdoor gym, lots of seats and places to watch the sports or enjoy/bask in the often sunny weather.
Jack Cook Park from Indooroopilly and Gailey Roads. Photographed Boxing Day 2020.
Across Indooroopilly Road from Jack Cook Memorial Park is Perrin Park. This much larger-in-area parkland has brand new outdoor basketball court and gym facilities with playground equipment that is much popular with the many young families in the area. There is a bat colony at the park as well as a newly built and merged community garden and composting hub, to help people with their gardening/composting requirements, as well as a very good dog off-the-leash area, with two separate fenced off areas beside each other.
Sign for cyclists, at boundary of Perrin and Jack Cook Parks, Taringa, photographed Boxing Day, 2020.
All this is among Indooroopilly and Gailey Roads for access and a stone's throw from UQ's Sir Fred Schonell Drive, making these two parks some of the most popular recreational facilities in this populous part of Brisbane. A cycle track crosses through the parks and while Jack Cook is not paved, Perrin is so expansive it is paved in a very wide path around its main 'oval type sporting green'.
Lush palms near a waterway line the Indooroopilly side of Perrin Park, photographed Boxing Day 2020.
The history of the parks is a bit fascinating, as it is for many of Brisbane's parks. According to the Toowong and District Historical Society webpage the park was gazetted as parkland and opened in 1984 as Jack Cook Memorial Park. The Toowong Harriers club also has a very long history. Perrin Park is officially on Josling Street, although does border with Burns and Indooroopilly roads, and is more renowned for having great playground equipment as seen on these pages. It has bbq facilities as well, although only at Perrin Park near the popular playground, and not at Jack Cook Park.
Basketball Court, Perrin Park, Taringa, photographed Boxing Day 2020.
The bat colony overlooks the dog off-leash area and composting hub. The architect's plan for the composting hub near the bat colony is outlined here. The official site of the Taringa community garden is here. It's something I can really relate to as living in a unit I can't compost easily, so I think it is an excellent initiative for people in this area, who for many reasons can't compost, but are keen to reduce the impact of fresh food waste on the environment. According to the community garden's FAQ page, there are many ways to get involved, although the project is still in early days, although underway, there are still many things to learn and improve upon. There are other setups in the Brisbane city council area the same concept design-wise or similar to Taringa's community garden.
Bats use Perrin Park trees as a habitat, photographed Boxing Day 2020.
I found such expansive parklands really make the Toowong/Taringa/St Lucia suburbs so much more spacious and interesting, especially the bat colony which although noisy can be quite spectacular to see so many of these creatures sit in the trees as well as fly in groups. The bats are harmless, although sometimes the birdlife can be just slightly aggressive but normal, as opposed to abnormal. Also, I highly doubt Perrin Park would be so popular with families if the animal life wasn't relatively tame or uninterested in humans, such as the bats, who don't bother humans despite their large numbers.
Taringa community garden and composting hub, photographed Boxing Day 2020.
It's a great place for families yet the mention of the bat life might have misled prospective visitors. I think overall, the combination of Jack Cook Memorial Park and Perrin Park present a lot of recreation ideas for people in Taringa, where visitors can enjoy a wide range of activities possible. So it is well worth an outing as most people are catered for in terms of having something to do and getting outdoors at the same time.
I forgot to mention parking, parking might be very hard on certain days of the year, from what I could see, it was easy to get a park on a quiet day, but as it is near UQ, that might not always be the case.