In this series, weâ€™ll be exploring some of the things that make the Ozarks special. The Ozarks have so much to offer residents and weâ€™d like to help people find or rediscover some of these offerings. Â Weâ€™ll have regular posts on the Murney Blog in the series, so keep an eye out for them!
The beauty of the Ozarks serves as the backdrop to our lives everyday in Springfield. The majestic scenery in our city is one of the things that makes it such a great place to live. When our busy schedules begin to weigh heavy on our lives, thereâ€™s nothing quite like taking a trip to one of our cityâ€™s beautiful parks to step away from the hectic nature of life and to take in the simple beauty of nature. Our parks are also a great place to have a lot of fun and meet new folks who share a love of Springfield.
Nathaneal Greene/Close Memorial Park
2400 S. Scenic
Springfield, MO 65807
This 113-acre park is home to the gorgeous Springfield Botanical Gardens, the Gray-Campbell Farmstead, the Butterfly House and many more features that you canâ€™t find anywhere else. The whole park is maintained by volunteers and they do an amazing job of preserving the beauty of the park all year round. The Springfield Botanical Gardens is a mesmerizing beauty that every resident should experience. There are dozens of collections of unique flowers and plants on display and the master gardeners of Springfield regularly hold events for the public who want to learn more about the collections.
Nathaneal Greene is also home to the Gray-Campbell homestead which is home to the cityâ€™s oldest log cabin, which was built in the 1860s. You can also check out the Dr. Bill Roston Native Butterfly House to observe how butterflies lay eggs, eat and transform from caterpillars!
One really cool way to get around the park is the solar tram service. You can hop on and see all that the park has to offer a little faster than walking!
- The Japanese Stroll Garden
- The Butterfly House
- The Gray-Campbell Farmstead
950 E Bennett St, Springfield, MO 65807
Phelps Grove is one of the oldest parks in Springfield and easily one of the most beautiful. Few things are more stunning than Phelps Grove park in the fall. It has many tall oak trees and when the colors begin to change, itâ€™s truly a sight to behold. The physical fitness course is a challenging, but really fun way to exercise at this park. You can jog from station to station, performing unique exercises at each location. Â The pavilion at Phelps Grove has been the site of many a happy gathering because it has so much to offer. If youâ€™re bringing the kiddos along, theyâ€™ll have plenty of things to climb, swing from and run around!
- The Physical Fitness Course
- The Pavilion
- The Fall Colors
3500 S Lone Pine Ave, Springfield, MO 65804
Sequiota is not only a great park on the southeast side of Springfield, itâ€™s also probably the number one place to see geese in town. They usually like to hang out around the outside of the pond on the south side of the park. Be aware when youâ€™re near them, they donâ€™t always react kindly to humans nearby but they sure are pretty birds! Sequiota also has two caves, one of which you can explore for yourself. Â It has many trails and a pavilion for gatherings too. Kids are always welcome and theyâ€™ll have plenty to do on the playground!
- The Caves
- The Fishing Lake
- The Geese
Jordan Valley Park
635 E Trafficway St
Just east of Hammons Field on Trafficway is one of the newest parks in town. Jordan Valley is a gorgeous meadow with tons of amenities and plenty of room for gatherings. Â Itâ€™s architecture is brilliant, including several beautiful fountains and two amazing sculptures. Â Kinetic Man or K-Man for short is a 23â€™ tall sculpture that can be manipulated by turning a wheel at its base. It was created by local artist Russ RuBert and has been a big hit since it was erected in 2005.
Donâ€™t miss it
- The Fountains
- The Springfield Wagon
301 E Talmage
Springfield, MO 65803
Doling Park has been a popular destination for leisure in Springfield for more than 100 years! In the early 1900s, the park was more of an amusement park, featuring a skating rink, a two story slide and menâ€™s and womenâ€™s bathhouses. Now, the park is public and free to anyone who wants to visit, but it still has some amazing features that are more in line with the modern park goer. In addition to playgrounds and open meadows, Doling has two tennis courts with lights, two bocce ball courts, a space for horseshoes and a pavilion. Â Inside, thereâ€™s a full service family center with a pool and a gymnasium. You can also take fitness classes and plenty more!
Donâ€™t Miss it
- Doling Museum
- Doling Aquatics Center
- Doling Lake
2405 S National
Springfield, MO 65804
A beautiful, simplistic park just off of National Avenue near Sunset, McDaniel Park is probably best known for its access to the South Creek Greenway. Itâ€™s also got a super-fun playground for the little ones to run around. The open field at McDaniel is a great place to play games, have a picnic or just walk around.
- South Creek Greenway
Grant Beach Park offers a wide variety of things to do near the center of town. Itâ€™s the home of the Railroad Museum and features a really cool locomotive right there in the park. Itâ€™s also right next to the Boys and Girls Club and Weaver Elementary school. Grant Beach has a public pool that is open in the summer time, too! The kids will love the corkscrew slide at the pool. There are several playgrounds and a big pavilion for parties and gatherings!
- Grant Beach Pool
- Railroad Museum
Fassnight Park & Pool
1301 S Campbell Ave, Springfield, MO 65807
Fassnight is nestled in a small elbow of Jordan Creek near Parkview High School in south-central Springfield. The pool is open during summer months and has a really fun event where it allows dogs to swim in the pool! Itâ€™s pretty much guaranteed that kids will love the twisty slide and the play area for the younger kids with a big fish sculpture that looks a lot like Nemo! On the dryer side of the park, you can find a few playgrounds and a full baseball diamond with a mound. Leashed pets are always welcome here, too!
Donâ€™t Miss It
- Dog Swim
- Twisty Slide
- Baseball Diamond
330 E. Water St.
This urban park may not have as much pure nature as our other parks have, but it makes up for it with a cool, modern design and tons of really fun events all year round. Founders Park regularly hosts movies in the park where anyone can stop by and catch a film. It also hosts local musicians who perform on the stage at Founders. At the entrance on Robberson Avenue, youâ€™ll notice a huge mural depicting life in Springfield and a green area with trees and shade that make a perfect spot to finish a chapter or enjoy a coffee. Local art and photography lines the concrete columns that make up the bulk of the park. There are some really amazing pieces on display throughout the year. ITâ€™s a great place to clear your mind in Downtown Springfield!
- Movies in the Park
- Live Musical Performances
- Local Art on Dispaly
Cruse Dog Park
2100 W Catalpa St, Springfield, MO 65807
The first off-leash dog park in Springfield, Cruse Dog Park is a 6-acre fenced area that your four legged friends will love! There are sections for both large dogs and small dogs to socialize. Itâ€™s a peaceful setting that backs up to Jordan Creek and has plenty of room for pups to stretch their legs. Â The admission fees are $10 for each dog and they must be vaccinated to get in to ensure the safety of all dogs in the park. Cruse offers membership as well, with a $25 annual registration fee. Itâ€™s a great place to meet other dog lovers and to get your pups used to being around other dogs.
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