Currently all 19 Metro Parks are open.
Your Metro Parks are a great place to enjoy the outdoors and find tranquility as this ongoing health crisis evolves, but only if we all adhere to social distancing. Your Metro Parks and trails matter now more than ever. We must work together and follow the rules to keep your parks open. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for updates about trail closures, program cancelations, reservations and other alerts as changes ensue.
When all of this started way back in early March, none of us knew what was going to happen or how long it was going to take. All we really knew here at Metro Parks is we’re going to do our best to keep parks safe, clean and open so visitors could stay active, spend time with family and reduce stress and anxiety. Our team developed plans, lots of them, to do just that. What happened next, has been nothing short of amazing.
Metro Parks have always been a popular destination for Central Ohioans. Now more than ever, parks have taken on an important and vital role in our lives. They are an oasis of normalcy for everyone, a way to just escape from all of the other challenges. Even though we are seeing record numbers, our parks are not crowded, an advantage of having almost 28,000 acres of parkland to explore and enjoy. Even without the nature centers, playgrounds or reservable facilities, our parks are the true attraction. Visitors can explore hundreds of miles of trails, woodlands, lakes, rivers and prairies while getting mood-boosting fresh air and sunshine.
While I can never give enough credit to the staff who have faithfully come to work every day to ensure the safety and security for our visitors. I can say, we as staff, have the best customers anyone could ever ask for. Our customers are the true heroes in making Metro Parks great. By following all of the social distancing guidelines, coming during non-peak times and being flexible to the changes we have made, you have made our work so much more rewarding.
As the situation continues to develop, we will take any necessary actions to protect visitor and staff health. We appreciate your support and patience as we navigate this public health crisis together.
So, I would like to pass along a great big Thank You, to everyone. Through all of your efforts, we will get through this together and come out the other side stronger and with a greater appreciation of all that Metro Parks has to offer. Please stay connected with us during this challenging time. We hope you and your loved ones stay healthy and well.
As we like to say around here…Metro Parks, we are only open every day, just for you.
- Metro Parks sledding hills will be open when conditions are appropriate for sledding. Face coverings are required on the hills at Battelle Darby Creek, Highbanks and Sharon Woods. These are our most crowded hills and sledding usually involves lots of screaming and yelling, which easily spreads germs and with crowds it will be difficult to achieve the proper social distancing.
- With over 28,000 acres of land to explore, we believe the Metro Parks are a great way to stay healthy and enjoy the outdoors in a socially distant way. As part of Metro Parks continuing effort to keep our parks safe and open throughout the national pandemic, we have continued to monitor not only state and local trends but also how our customers are using our parks. Throughout this we have implemented many new guidelines, temporary rules, as well as restricted use throughout these challenging times. All of these were done using the best available information and guidance from a variety of local, state and federal sources. In an effort to update and clarify the direction given 11/14/20 regarding the wearing of masks while at a Metro Park, we would like to clarify the expectations for all of our visitors.When visiting a Metro Park, all individuals shall wear masks or facial coverings at all times when:
In any indoor facility (i.e. restrooms) unless there is a medical, developmental or other exemption for the individual, or Outdoors and unable to consistently maintain a distance of six feet or more from individuals who are not members of their family/household. While not required, Metro Parks encourages the wearing of a mask or other facial covering when visiting one of our parks or trails. Metro Parks also encourages individuals to wear masks outside and when the six-foot guideline cannot be consistently followed (e.g. parking lots and trail heads).
Clear Creek Metro Park will be closed Monday, November 30, Tuesday, December 1 and Wednesday, December 2 for a resource management project and will resume normal hours on Thursday, December 4 (6:30am to 6pm).
- All current restrictions on mass gatherings stay in place. We have constantly worked throughout this pandemic to keep our parks open and safe to the public and appreciate everything all of you have done. Please feel free to reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org if you have
- Metro Parks is slowly reintroducing programming. At this time, programs will be limited and only advertised through the following online formats: Battelle Darby Creek Facebook page, Blacklick Woods Facebook page, Blendon Woods Facebook page, Clear Creek Facebook page, Glacier Ridge Facebook page, Highbanks Facebook page, Homestead Facebook page, Inniswood Facebook page, Sharon Woods Facebook page, Three Creeks Facebook page and Outdoor Adventure Facebook page.
- Due to COVID-19, Metro Parks temporarily suspended volunteer opportunities. We will be slowly restarting our volunteer opportunities to our current volunteers. Please check back for more information.
- All reservations, special permits and events are canceled through January 4, 2021. These cancellations are subject to extension.
- Restrooms remain open.
- Beginning June 12, the following areas and structures were opened:
- Battelle Darby Creek: Playground (Cedar Ridge North); volleyball. Volleyball courts are open and only 10 players may play at a time to meet mass gathering guidelines. Spectators will be considered an additional group as long as they maintain a physical separation from the volleyball court.
- Blacklick Woods: Playground (Ash Grove); stretch racks.
- Blendon Woods: Natural play area; Playground (area #2); all stretch racks.
- Chestnut Ridge: Playground (main); stretch rack.
- Clear Creek: stretch rack.
- Glacier Ridge: Playground (main); recreation structures; obstacle course; stretch rack.
- Highbanks: Playground (Big Meadows) including zipline; all exercise stations.
- Homestead: Playgrounds (main and all-inclusive); exercise stations; stretch racks.
- Pickerington Ponds: Stretch rack.
- Prairie Oaks: Playground (Prairie View).
- Rocky Fork: Playground (Millstone); all stretch racks.
- Scioto Audubon: Playground (central activity area); rock wall; obstacle course; volleyball. Volleyball courts are open and only 10 players may play at a time to meet mass gathering guidelines. Spectators will be considered an additional group as long as they maintain a physical separation from the volleyball court.
- Scioto Grove: Playground (Arrowhead)
- Sharon Woods: Playground (Apple Ridge); exercise station (Maple Grove and Lake and Multipurpose trails).
- Slate Run: Playground (Buzzards Roost).
- Slate Run Living Historical Farm: Open Thursday – Sunday from 9am – 5 pm. No guided tours or scheduled groups. The farmhouse is closed. A maximum of 10 people will be allowed in the barn and other outbuildings at one time.
- Three Creeks: Playground (Confluence); stretch racks.
- Walnut Woods: Playground (Main).
- *Some of these structures will be closed for a short period throughout the day for cleaning and disinfecting*
- Beginning October 1, Metro Parks will be open from 6:30am to 8pm. Our Dark Parks will close at 7pm.
- Beginning October 1, the golf course will be open to the public on a daily basis from 8am to 7pm. Greens fees will be charged, carts can be rented and tee times for the championship course will be taken. No food or merchandise will be sold, but we will sell water, pop and beer.
- Beginning October, the Chestnut Ridge mountain bike trail is open daily until 7pm, weather permitting.
- Some dog parks may close earlier than 8pm as several parks have multiple entrances that rangers have to close. Try and exercise your dog earlier in the day.
- Currently, all rental facilities are closed, all special events, programs and activities are canceled until at least January 4, 2021 and reservations are only being accepted for dates occurring April 1, 2021 or later.
- Please email email@example.com if you have any questions, comments, concerns, or inquiries.
Timeline of Updates
June 12, 2020
Beginning June 12, the following areas and structures are open:
Glacier Ridge: Playground (main); recreation structures; obstacle course; stretch rack.
Highbanks: Playground (Big Meadows) including zipline; all exercise stations.
Homestead: Playgrounds (main and all-inclusive); exercise stations; stretch racks.
Blendon Woods: Natural play area; Playground (area #2); all stretch racks.
Rocky Fork: Playground (Millstone); all stretch racks.
Sharon Woods: Playground (Apple Ridge); exercise station (Maple Grove and Lake and Multipurpose trails).
Scioto Audubon: Playground (central activity area); rock wall; obstacle Course; volleyball. Volleyball courts are open and only 10 players may play at a time to meet mass gathering guidelines. Spectators will be considered an additional group as long as they maintain a physical separation from the volleyball court.
Blacklick Woods: Playground (Ash Grove); stretch racks.
Chestnut Ridge: Playground (main); stretch rack.
Clear Creek: stretch rack.
Pickerington Ponds: Stretch rack.
Slate Run: Playground (Buzzards Roost).
Slate Run Living Historical Farm: Open Thursday – Sunday from 9am – 5 pm. No guided tours or scheduled groups. The farmhouse is closed. A maximum of 10 people will be allowed in the barn and other outbuildings at one time.
Three Creeks: Playground (Confluence); stretch racks.
Walnut Woods: Playground (Main).
Battelle Darby Creek: Playground (Cedar Ridge North); volleyball. Volleyball courts are open and only 10 players may play at a time to meet mass gathering guidelines. Spectators will be considered an additional group as long as they maintain a physical separation from the volleyball court.
Prairie Oaks: Playground (Prairie View).
Scioto Grove: Playground (Arrowhead)
*Some of these structures will be closed for a short period throughout the day for cleaning and disinfecting*
April 27, 2020
All Metro Parks are open from 6:30am to 8pm through May 15 and all facility reservations, programs and special events are canceled through May 31.
April 8, 2020
March 27, 2020
Metro Parks are a great place to relax and get some fresh air. While you’re out, be sure to maintain a six-foot distance between yourself and other visitors. For more information on using parks during the Ohio Department of Health’s Stay-At-Home order, check out section 5c.
March 25, 2020
Effective March 25, the Chestnut Ridge mountain bike trail will be open only Saturdays and Sundays from 9am to 6pm.
March 22, 2020
All Metro Parks will remain open, but in accordance with the Ohio Department of Health Director’s Stay At Home Order, Metro Parks will be in the process of closing playgrounds tomorrow, March 23.
March 20, 2020
Effective March 21, Slate Run Historical Farm is closed to the public so staff can take care of the animals.
March 19, 2020
Effective immediately, Blacklick Woods Metro Golf Course will remain open with a few changes:
- The course will be open Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday from 7:30am to 4pm.
- No green fees, no tee times, no league play and no outings.
- Golfers will have to walk, no golf carts available.
Remember the mass gathering limit of no more than 10 people and the need to practice social distancing.
March 17, 2020
At this time, all 19 Metro Parks and trails are open and will be open from 6:30am until 8pm daily.
March 16, 2020
Considering the safety of park visitors and updated CDC guidelines on mass gatherings of no more than 10 people, effective immediately all nature centers will be closed and all programs canceled. All 19 parks remain open.
March 16, 2020
All scheduled indoor park programs will be conducted outdoors and if needed adapted to an activity that keeps gatherings below the 50-person mass gathering threshold recommended by the CDC.
Blacklick Woods Metro Park Nature Center: No public entry until further notice.
Blendon Woods Metro Park Nature Center: No public entry to the nature center until further notice. Nature center restrooms will remain available for public use.
Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park and Highbanks Metro Park Nature Centers will remain open until further notice as they provide needed restroom facilities.
Homestead Metro Park Nature Center: No public entry.
Slate Run Metro Park and Living Historical Farm: The farm will remain open but no public entry into the farmhouse.
March 16, 2020
At this time, all 19 Metro Parks are open and are welcoming visitors. In keeping with our mission to encourage people to experience nature, we want visitors to take advantage of our 19 parks and get outside. With 27,500 acres and hundreds of miles of trails, our parks are ideal for individuals and families to explore on their own while maintaining social distance between themselves and others.
“Many Central Ohioans are going through a stressful time,” said Metro Parks Executive Director Tim Moloney. “Time spent outdoors can relieve stress and improve physical and mental health.”
Parks provide opportunities for both outdoor adventure-seekers and those looking for relaxation and solitude. Public health officials are encouraging people to get outside and take a break. They advise people to use caution not fear.
We fully support efforts to mitigate the spread of coronavirus and remain fully committed to responding to this situation based on the most up-to-date information available from public health authorities, the CDC and Ohio’s Governor.
Parks are taking recommended precautions to provide a safe environment for visitors. Staff are trained and experienced in the universal practices and standards for cleaning and sanitation of public facilities.
Park visitors are encouraged to follow the guidance provided by the CDC and the Ohio Department of Health during the coronavirus outbreak.
Please visit our website (metroparks.net) and follow our social media pages to stay informed on any future announcements.
March 14, 2020
Metro Parks will strive to continue conducting programs. Some programs and activities may be adapted due to crowd size or other situations in response to orders from Ohio’s Governor to COVID-19. At this time, all parks are open.
March 13, 2020
The health and safety of our visitors, volunteers and staff is Metro Parks’ top priority and we will continue to carefully monitor the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation occurring across the nation and in Ohio. For more information: https://www.metroparks.net/blog/covid-19-update-and-columbus-and-franklin-county-metro-parks-response/)