7 Of The Best Outdoor Kid Activities in the 828
The Mountains are calling. I must go.
The sun is shining, the breeze is blowing, and parents are in desperate need of some distance between them and their children
—luckily, playgrounds in the 828 are plentiful and the best way to spend an afternoon.
Photo by Daniel Benetti
1) Carrier Park in Asheville
Fun for the whole family, Carrier Park is in an outdoor lover’s paradise. Visitors can run a scenic double loop around the park, following a paved greenway trail along the scenic shores of the French Broad River or practice your serve on the volleyball courts. Carrier Park also features a giant playground, a roller hockey rink, a basketball court, a lawn bowling court, a paved trail and a multi-use sports field for baseball and soccer. This all-encompassing park really does have something for the entire family.
Most Unique Feature: The roller-hockey rink
2) Parker Meadows in Franklin
What once was home to a golf course, the Parker Meadows Sports Complex is the ideal destination for weekend ball tournaments, historical culture lessons, or just a day at a handicap accessible park. With two four leaf clover ballfields, Parker Meadows is a travel ball destination. The park’s one-mile walking path features a story walk, which encourages families to read together while getting outside and being active. Parker Meadows has a brand new playground with special swings for handicap visitors. The park also features river access to help you cool off on a hot summer day.
Most Unique Feature: A Story Walk along a one-mile walking path for families to read together while getting outside and getting active!
3) Kiwanis Park in Hickory
Variety is the spice of life, and if you are looking for a wide range of outdoor activities for the kiddos, Kiwanis Park is the place to be! Featuring two picnic shelters with tables and grills, tennis court, outdoor basketball court, four lighted baseball fields, two batting cages, walking trail, restrooms, two concession stands, and two playgrounds, Kiwanis Park is packed full of things to do! The highlight of the park is the Charles D. Dixon Memorial Splash Pad and treehouse, a feature that not every public park can boast! The splash pad promises hours of fun in the sun!
Most Unique Feature: The Charles D. Dixon Memorial Splash Pad
4) Lake Julian Park in Buncombe County
Lake Julian Park offers fishing, picnic areas, disc golf, outdoor games, a playground, paddleboats, special event venue rentals, and water access along a picturesque 300-acre public lake. Mountain Lakes are some of the prettiest places in the 828 — and what better way to spend the day than hanging on the monkey bars after a cool swim in Lake Julian?
Most Unique Feature: The disc golf course laid out around the park.
5) Redwood Park in Caldwell County
Located in Hudson, Redwood Park provides two outdoor basketball courts, two tennis courts, one sand volleyball court, and horseshoe pits. The park also provides picnic tables and covered shelters for parties by reservation. Redwood also has three separate playgrounds for children as well as lighted walking and biking trails, nature trails with interpretive trees, and an outdoor amphitheater in the Barton and Estoy Hayes Forest. The McCreary Recreation and Fitness Center and Hudson pool are located at the park.
Most Unique Feature: The park’s horseshoe pits.
Located in the high country mountains of northeastern North Carolina, Boone, NC is an ideal location for outdoor activities.
6) Oconaluftee Islands Park in Cherokee, NC
The islands are located right next to downtown Cherokee giving you easy access to shopping when you are finished picnicking on one of the many grassy islands and playing or trout fishing in the shallow shoals Oconaluftee River. The river is divided by grassy islands that are connected with bridges and have plenty of picnic tables. There are even piers where you can feed the ducks.
Most Unique Feature: The river’s shaded island
7) Memorial Park in Blowing Rock
If you are in the high country of NC and near Blowing Rock, you should stop and let the kids play in Memorial Park in their downtown area. Memorial Park is open 365 days a year and includes two tennis courts, two basketball courts, a large kid’s playground, and shaded picnic areas. There is also a large gazebo that serves many events for the Town of Blowing Rock. You may find ice carving during Winter Fest, Santa visiting during Christmas or concerts through the summer.
Most unique feature: Seeing the large gazebo lit up at night with snow on the ground
Get Outside With The Family
This by no means exhausts the many great fun outdoor activities for families across the Great 828 area code. From the far Western North Carolina mountains of Murphy to the high country around Boone you’ll find many great, scenic, outdoor playground areas for your family.