An introduction to Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks

Your 19 Metro Parks provide endless opportunities for you to connect with nature and have fun in the outdoors. With more than 27,700 acres of land and water to explore and 230 miles of trails to traverse, there’s plenty of space for everyone to enjoy the wonder and majesty of nature in Metro Parks. We’re free and only open every day for your enjoyment.

The mission of Metro Parks is to conserve open spaces, while providing places and opportunities that encourage people to discover and experience nature.

Our History

Created on August 14, 1945, Metro Parks is an independent political subdivision of the state of Ohio organized under Ohio Revised Code Section 1545 to conserve natural resources and provide natural area parks for people to enjoy. Metro Parks is a separate subdivision of the state of Ohio and is not under the administration of any other governmental unit.

The tremendous growth and enduring popularity of Metro Parks is due to the strong support of the community – as voters, as volunteers and as visitors. Metro Parks’ primary funding source is the 10-year, 0.95 mill levy approved by Franklin County voters in November 2018. The levy provides a sound financial base for operating and improving existing parks, as well as acquiring additional land for future preservation.

Metro Parks has three designated categories of revenue: public sources (taxes, local government funds and government grants), operational fees (earned income), and other revenue (donations, interest income, etc).

Girl on climbing wall at Scioto Audubon

Our Future

We continually work to responsibly manage our resources, while enhancing visitor experiences. We are dedicated to meting taxpayer expectations while fulfilling our mission’s mandate.

Photo: Dave Jolley

News & Upcoming Events

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Winter fun awaits you at Metro Parks

Bundle up and head out to your favorite Metro Park for some winter fun! When those flakes gather on the ground and drift through the air, there’s no finer place …Read More

Opt Outside in a Metro Park on Black Friday

Instead of standing in long lines waiting to buy cheap stuff at discounted rates on Black Friday (November 29), tell the world you’re going to #OptOutside by visiting a Metro …Read More

Man soaks up nature at Blendon Woods

Keith Kraut talks with 10TV’s Karina Nova at Blendon Woods about birding and how the park helps him cope with depression and anxiety. Keith birds at the park several times …Read More

Treat yourself to an 1880s Thanksgiving

While Thanksgiving may conjure up memories of feasting all day and napping all night, it was quite the opposite on an 1880s farm. Men still had to husk and haul …Read More

Get Outside, It’s Your Nature!