Vernon City Parks:
As you enter the City of Vernon travelling North you will find stunning Polson Park at the junction of Highway 6 and Highway 97. Polson Park is 13.5 hectares of turf grass, trees, speciality gardens and a sports field. The bandshell is the site of many city celebrations, concerts and special events. There are picnic tables and benches for visitors. The many activities in Polson are lawn bowling, children's playground, spray park, duck ponds, tennis courts, football stadium and running track. There is also a nature trail along Vernon Creek that offers views and access to the Rose Garden, Japanese Garden and Floral Clock.
Greater Vernon Athletic Park
The newest park area in Vernon, the Greater Vernon Athletic Park track and field facilities plus throw and jump areas as well. It has a synthetic as well as a natural turf field. Open from dawn to dusk, it is generally free for public use.
DND Athletic Fields*
This is Greater Vernon's most extensive athletic park with 10 softball fields and 2 soccer pitches. DND is the site of the annual Funtastic Slo-Pitch Tournament and Music Festival which attracts 300 slo-pitch teams and many spectators each year.
Marshall Field is close to Okanagan Lake and accessed from Okanagan Landing Road. The major focus of this park is soccer. The tournament site boasts 4 soccer pitches, along with 2 baseball diamonds and 4 tennis courts, plus Greater Vernon's indoor soccer facility. Vernon Creek winds its way along the west boundary of the park.
Parks With Beaches:
On the eastern shore of the Vernon arm of Okanagan Lake accessed from Tronson Road and Lakeshore Drive. Offering shaded sandy beach, grassed areas, several picnic areas with barbecues, a large covered picnic shelter, change & rest rooms, a large handicapped accessible playground and boat rentals. The water is very shallow, so this is a great place for the kids to play. Parking available along Tronson Road, adjacent to the park.
This park is actually privately owned by the Okanagan Landing & District Community Association and although it is relatively small, it's one of the best on Okanagan Lake. The Park offers a wide variety of fun recreational options: sandy beach, grassed areas, a playground, basketball court, sand volleyball courts and tennis court. A boat launch, along with boat trailer parking is available as well as a meeting hall.
Nestled on the northeastern shore of Okanagan Lake, Ellison Provincial Park includes 200 hectares of forested benchlands above a rocky shoreline of scenic headlands and sheltered coves. The park's natural attractions, combined with the dry, sunny Okanagan climate provide many recreational opportunities from spring through fall. Hiking trails along the scenic headlands are steep and require care and attention.
In addition to these major public beaches, there are many smalller parks and public beach accesses as well including: On Okanagan Lake: Delcliffe Road Beach, Hurlburt Park, Foster Road Beach, Lakeshore Road Beach, Rocky Beach, Tavistock Beach and Whitepoint Road Beach. On Kalamalka Lake: Jameson Beach, Kekuli Bay, Kirkland Beach, Lisheen Beach, Long Lake Road Beach Access, Pumphouse Beach, Railway Beaches, Shady Beach, Soverign Park
The Greater Vernon area has several Community Parks. These parks normally provide sports fields, washrooms and parking. They usually serve the area of a Secondary School and three to five neighborhoods.
The Greater Vernon area has many Neighbourhood Parks for families to enjoy. It allows people to socialize and get to know those in their neighbourhood.
Neighbourhood Parks are usually located within the vicinity of an elementary school or a neighbourhood of 2,000 to 4,000 in population. In many cases, portions of elementary school sites serve as neighbourhood parks.
Neighbourhood Parks include Lakeview Park, Creekside Park and Soverign Park.
Natural Area Parks:
Natural areas have been acquired by the GVSC participants to protect environmentally significant areas and features and to provide outdoor recreation opportunities. The natural areas include ponds, wetlands, riparian and forested areas, prominent slopes, and other natural features. There are 11 parcels of land that are classified as natural areas.
Some examples are Becker Park, Black Rock, CEC Young, Cools Pond, McKergow Meadows, and Webster Park.
Greater Vernon Services has provided areas where dogs may be exercised, either on or off leash. Dogs must be under the control of the owners at all times and owners must clean up after their dogs immediately. Receptacles and bag dispensers are provided at each site.
For more information and maps, click here.
* Photo by Keith Johnston on Unsplash
** Photo by Emilio Garcia on Unsplash