Bellevue Park is Belleville’s first park. It sits on 27 beautiful acres on the west end of Belleville near Memorial Hospital. The park offers a tranquil, three-acre fishing lake and gentle rolling terrain that also serves as a picturesque site for small outdoor weddings. It’s also home to Belleville’s Angel of Hope Memorial Garden and Camp Quackers, a summer day-camp run by Belleville Parks & Recreation.
Bicentennial Park is Belleville’s newest park. It consists of 43 beautiful wooded acres and a number of ponds. It was developed and named in honor of the City of Belleville’s 200th Anniversary in 2014. The Kimball Plaza area of the park features a “wedding-like” gazebo, restroom, playground, an art sculpture by Andrew Carson, ADA fishing pier, native plant garden, fountain, nature trails and a lighted parking lot.
Citizens Park is Belleville’s largest park. Citizens is a recreational park with two large lighted softball diamonds and a first class baseball field named for Whitey Herzog, which serves as the home field for the American Legion and Althoff High School Baseball Teams. In addition to the ball diamonds at Citizens Park, the park also offers bicycle ramps, along with other recreational amenities. Two modular playgrounds for children and three picnic shelters are available for family picnics.
East End Park offers a lighted tennis court for exercise after work, school or dinner. A playground is conveniently located next to the tennis court. East End has horseshoe courts and an area large enough for a softball game.
Hough Park is Belleville’s Picnic Headquarters. A part of the Richland Creek Greenway Trail and Sculpture Walk cuts through the western and northern sections of the park. A large hexagon-shaped shelter with brick patios in the center of the park serves as its main focal point and is excellent for group events. A modular playground and horseshoe courts are adjacent to the shelter for a friendly game of ringers.
Laderman Park offers 22 acres of excitement. Two lighted softball diamonds, a lighted soccer field, volleyball courts, horseshoe courts, basketball court, picnic shelters, and modular playground equipment for children are all available for family enjoyment. A one-mile walking trail with fitness stations provides a fantastic opportunity to achieve physical and mental health. Thickly wooded areas of the park provide a home to many squirrels and a variety of birds.
North End Park presents the perfect location to spend a quiet lunch break. Other features include a soccer field, playground and horseshoe courts. The park is at the Richland Creek Greenway Trail’s north end.
Optimist Park features beautiful art sculptures. This linear park is just the ticket for a leisurely stroll along Richland Creek taking in some of nature’s best plants and animal life found along the creek. This is an excellent outdoor educational setting for anyone interested in nature.
Pleasant Hill Park is ideal for family reunions or company picnics with two large picnic shelters available for rental. You can play off your picnic dinner with a set of tennis under the lights or a softball game on two lighted ball diamonds. You can also try your hand at horseshoes while the children play on one of the two playground structures close by. There’s also a small walking trail featured at this nice, quiet park in the heart of town.
Rotary Park, a gift from the Belleville Rotary Club, is the center point of the Richland Creek Greenway Trail and Sculpture Walk where you can see “Star,” the largest art sculpture in Belleville. This park specializes in leisure recreation. The large picnic shelter close to the parking lot is a great spot for downtown office workers to enjoy a sack lunch break.
Skateboard Park brings out the daredevil in those who take the challenge. The parks director included skaters in on the design and construction process and gave them what they wanted, a challenging, fun and safe place to sharpen their skating skills.
South Side Park provides a two-acre lake for you and your family to stroll around, go fishing or feed the ducks. On warm summer evenings you can catch an exciting softball game or tournament under the lights. South Side Park also has picnic facilities and playground equipment available for family fun and is the southern end of the Richland Creek Greenway Trail.
Ever & Anon Park is a quaint little park in downtown Belleville. The beautiful gazebo with the rose garden backdrop is an excellent place to hold an outdoor wedding. Reservations for such events are handled through the Parks and Recreation office.
West End Square Mini Park features a beautiful rose garden. Volunteers from the Belleville Area Rose Society tend to the garden and are responsible for this beautiful display of roses. West End Square served as the public square for West Belleville from 1852 to 1882 and that’s how the park got its name.
Dawn Heights Mini-Park proves that great things come in small packages. This mini-park is designed for maximum use by neighborhood children. Totally fenced to provide protection for the kids and peace of mind for parents, the park has a modular playground structure and an open area for a game of tag. It’s a great place for children to make new friends and have hours of fun.
Cambridge Park is Belleville’s gift to its children. This park features a playground arena sure to make any child smile. The park offers several slides, a mini climbing wall, swings and bridges. The park even provides the comfort of swinging benches so the parents can relax while they observe their children’s excitement.
For more information on any of Belleville’s parks or the many programs offered by Parks & Recreation, visit the city’s website at www.belleville.net.
Other recreation opportunities
In addition to the many parks, the Belleville area offers many other ways to stay active.
Fitness centers include Club Exhilaration, Flipmode Fysique, Kings Point Sports Club and two Gateway Region YMCA facilities, one downtown Belleville and one on the east end of town. For yoga and other stress relief remedies, Stillpointe Wellness Center is the place to go.
Belleville also has an annual marathon, Belleville Main Street Marathon, in September. It is a full marathon that is a Boston Marathon qualifier. For more information about the marathon, visit www.bellevillemarathon.com.