By Kelly Youngblood
Located just 10 miles west of Champaign, Mahomet is a town that keeps on growing- both in population and progress.
As the town has grown, so have the number of parks. There’s no shortage of choices for families in the area to visit. Here’s our list of the top six parks in Mahomet!
Lake of the Woods, which is part of the Champaign County Forest Preserve District, is one of my personal favorite places in town. The playground, which is located near the main entrance of the park, is just the right size for my family- it entertains all three of my kids who are 5, 8, and 10 years old. It’s also mostly shaded thanks to the surrounding trees. The swing set is in sand, which means my kids usually spend quite a bit of time building sandcastles while we’re there too.
We usually hear the carillon chimes from the Bell Tower across the street, which almost always results in a trip up the six story tower. The top of the observation deck offers some great views of the preserve and the surrounding area.
Lake of the Woods is also home to a golf course, botanical gardens, a great historical museum, a covered bridge, and a swinging bridge. There’s miles of paved walking and biking trails, as well as a lake where people can fish or rent paddle boats when in season. Lake of the Woods is located at 109 South Lake of the Woods Road.
Bridle Leash Park
Bridle Leash, located in the northeast corner of Dianne Lane and Raymond Drive, is one of the newest parks in town. Besides having two play structures- one for younger kids and one for the older ones- it also features a paved sidewalk around the entire area for walkers or bikers, two baseball/softball fields, and a sandy area for beach volleyball.
Many may not be aware that a basketball court exists there as well. (I didn’t find it until just the other day!) Follow the sidewalk just west of the parking lot and you’ll discover a full basketball court with several hoops all surrounded by trees.
Brent Johnson Park
This park is located on Oak Valley Road, at the north entrance of the Thornewood subdivision on Rt. 47 North. The park is named after a former Mahomet-Seymour student and athlete who died in 2004.
This newer playground structure includes the popular “turtle rock” and a disc golf course. Although the park is located in a subdivision, it’s owned and maintained by the Village of Mahomet Parks Department and is open to the public.
Water Tower Park
The park’s formal name is Brooks-Warfel Park, but it’s commonly known as Water Tower Park because of it’s location.
The play structure is smaller and geared more towards a younger crowd. There’s also a sand area with a seated digger for kids to scoop and dump sand- a favorite feature for many kids who visit.
A covered pavilion with a picnic table is also on site. FYI, Dairy Queen is located just a couple of blocks away if you’re looking for a cool treat before or after your trip to this park. Water Tower Park is located at 405 E. Dunbar St.
13 Acres Park
13 Acres, located on West St., is mostly just fields where various sports teams practice and play. But there is a play structure that keeps brothers and sisters busy (and parents happy) while their siblings do their thing.
Also part of the Champaign County Forest Preserve, River Bend offers many family outdoor activities including hiking, biking, fishing, kayaking, and canoeing. There isn’t a playground on site but a beautiful lake and a few trails definitely make it worth a visit.
Did we miss your favorite Mahomet Park? Let us know in the comments?