The City of Jackson Michigan has no shortage of parks and playgrounds for you to enjoy, and we bet you haven’t visited all of them. Here are a few of the best parks & playgrounds Jackson MI has that we thought you might enjoy checking out with your friends and family this year!
Best Parks & Playgrounds Jackson MI Offers
Ella Sharp Park
Going to Ella Sharp Park on Fourth Street is one of the top family things to do in Jackson. The 562-acre property is located along the Grand River and offers numerous activities. Playgrounds can be found on both ends of the park, as well as picnic tables and shelters. There’s a challenging 18-hole golf course, an 18-hole disc golf course, and a miniature golf course providing a variety for everyone in the family.
Ella Sharp Park has tennis and basketball courts as well as soccer, softball, and baseball fields. On top of that, there’s a rose garden, miles of walking trails, and cross-country ski trails. For a fun, educational experience, visit the Ella Sharp Museum, which features a gallery, planetarium, and farmhouse tours.
Sparks Foundation County Park
More commonly referred to as Cascades Park, Sparks Foundation County Park on Brown Street is best known for The Cascades, which is an illuminated waterfall. However, the park has tons of family and kids activities, including a playground and a splash pad where children can play in the water. You can use the paved paths for walking, running, biking, or rollerblading. Also, there’s a basketball court as well as a baseball and softball complex.
The picnic areas and shelters at Sparks Foundation County Park are a great place to take a breather for lunch or a snack. During the summer, you can stop by Cascades Ice Cream Co for a frozen treat. Cascades Golf Course is an 18-hole championship course on the property, and the Sparks Park Urban Fishery is a family-friendly fishing location in Jackson Michigan. Many outdoor events are held at the park too, including fireworks and concerts at the Cascades Rotary Bandshell.
All kids love the large, wooden community-built playground at Loomis Park on Homewild Avenue. Spanning 14 acres, this park features courts for basketball and tennis. You can take a break in the picnic area and shelter or have a small cookout on one of the grills.
In the northeast corner of Loomis Park, Boos Recreation Center offers several more things to do, including indoor basketball and volleyball. There’s an indoor trampoline and classes for aerobics, yoga, and more. Truly offering activities for all ages, the center’s 50 & Better program offers many activities and outings for seniors in Jackson Michigan.
William Nixon Memorial Park
As one of the coolest parks with family things to do, William Nixon Memorial Park on North Street is known for its skate park and water park. There is also a softball field complex for local softball leagues. The water park is open from mid-June through August and has a swimming pool with waterslides and a zero-depth pool. The picnic area has a shelter that’s great for outdoor parties or you can rent the party room at the water park.
Howard Charles Woods Recreational Complex
Along with playground equipment, the Howard Charles Woods Recreational Complex on Adrian Street is a 10-acre property that’s full of kids’ activities. It has a pavilion, tennis and basketball courts, and a baseball and softball field. There’s a ⅓-mile walking trail that connects to the Martin Luther King Equality Trail, which was previously the Inter-City Bike Trail.
Also on the property is the MLK Community Center. Inside is a multipurpose gymnasium with a traverse wall. There’s even a health and fitness room with weight machines, cardio equipment, and free weights.
The MLK Community Center is currently undergoing renovations and is scheduled to reopen in the fall of 2020.
Other Great Jackson Parks With Playgrounds
Ganson Street Park — Offering playground equipment on Ganson Street, this ⅓-acre park has a green space with landscaping and benches.
Bloomfield Park — On Durand Street, this 2.2-acre park has playground equipment, basketball and tennis courts, a ball field and picnic tables.
Optimist Park — Stretching for 5 acres on Lincoln Street, this park has a small playground, basketball court and softball field.
Lions Park — Aside from small playgrounds, this 7-acre park on Adams Street has softball fields, courts for basketball and tennis, and a picnic shelter.
Exchange Park — With 4 acres on Mansion Street, this park has a playground, a softball field, and tennis and basketball courts.
Best Jackson Parks With Other Features
Under the Oaks City Park
As the birthplace of the Republican Party in 1854, the ⅕-acre Under the Oaks City Park on Second Street features a monument that commemorates the historic date. This oak grove became a historical spot when a state convention to establish the new political party was moved outdoors because of the large crowd and hot temperatures. Aside from a plaque, there are benches under the oak trees.
Gov. Austin Blair Memorial Park
With a historical marker that honors Civil War Gov. Austin Blair, the ¾-acre Gov. Austin Blair Memorial Park on Jackson Street is a beautiful place to walk or rest in the landscaped green space. The governor was a Jackson resident, and the marker in the green space recaps his history. There’s a fountain and park benches in the park too.
Bucky Harris Park
Another historical thing to do in Jackson is visit Bucky Harris Park on Michigan Avenue. This ½-acre park marks the spot of the Jacksonburg Sentinel, which was the first newspaper in Jackson and was founded by two agents of the Underground Railroad. The park’s green space, fountain, and benches create a peaceful atmosphere. There’s a concert stage and restrooms as well.
Other Parks to Visit in Jackson
Reverend W. George Wade Park — On Plymouth Street, this ½-acre park has a flower garden, benches, and picnic tables.
New Leaf Park — With ½ acre of space, this Fourth Street park has a lending library box and offers parking access for the MLK Equality Trail.
Elnora Moorman Plaza — This 1-acre park on High Street was dedicated in memory of a community trailblazer and features green space near the MLK Equality Trail, a bike rack, wrought iron trellis with ornamental roses, and benches.
More Parks and Things to Do in Jackson, Michigan
These are only some of the parks and family things to do in Jackson – in fact, these are just a few of the parks in the city limits. For more parks and playgrounds in Jackson County Michigan, check out our list in our best free and cheap activities article, and be sure to check out the best family-friendly events in the city while you’re at it!