DPJ’s Urban Form series looks at the interplay between movement and surroundings through the lens of dancers and architecture in downtown Phoenix.

UF bridge

Jessica Waitz. Photo by Ashley Baker.

“Be honest with what is.” – Jessica Waitz

Encanto Park is a place where families go to enjoy their down time, read a book, watch their little ones ride the train or explore its palm tree-filled islands. Though it is not the only park housed in central Phoenix, it is memorable for its amusement park, its extensive lagoon and the bridges of various sizes and color found throughout. Surrounded by the beautiful Encanto-Palmcroft Historic Neighborhood, Encanto Park’s calm waters and vibrant greenery invites the dancer to explore.

As dancer Jessica Waitz walked onto this bridge, part of the park’s 222-acre green space, she anticipated the experience of dancing there on that day. She experienced the openness of exploring her own identity in a location where so many others around her were doing the same. Encanto Park is a place that gives you space to be present, where the peace of the summer breeze along the water reminds you of the greatness of being there, the greatness of living.