Fun abounds in city’s many parks

Published 12:00 am Sunday, July 20, 2003

Suffolk News-Herald

Citizens of Suffolk are fortunate to have several locations where they can take part in activities sponsored by the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation. The facilities are available for rent to the public and may be used for hosting a number of family and fun events.

Bennett Creek Park is a 50-acre park located off Shoulders Hill Road in the northern section of Suffolk. The park offers two free boat ramps that access the Nansemond River, a playground, tennis courts, restrooms, three covered shelters that can be reserved for use, a nature trail, open fields, a fishing and crabbing pier with handicap accessible features, and plenty of fresh air and sunshine. If picnic shelters are not previously reserved, they may be used on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, call 923-2360.

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Lone Star Lakes Park is located off of Bob House Parkway in the Chuckatuck section of Suffolk. This 1,063-acre wilderness park offers eleven lakes for freshwater fishing, nature trails for hiking, picnic areas with tables and grills, a playground, a 4-mile horse trail for horseback riding, an archery range, a model airplane flying field, a fishing and crabbing pier, shoreline fishing areas, plenty of flora and fauna, and friendly park rangers to welcome you. Daily and annual permits are available at the Park Ranger Office. Boat rentals are not available, and gas-powered motors are not permitted. Electric motors are permitted. For more information, call 255-4308.

Sleepy Hole Park is a 66-acre facility, located off Sleepy Hole Road. This park offers a variety of natural areas including 12 picnic shelters, a children’s playground, restrooms, open space, trails, a beautiful lake, and breathtaking views of the Nansemond River. For more information call 923-2360.

The Planter’s Club, located at 4600 Planters Club Dr., is also available to the public. The facility can accommodate at least 144 people and there is ample space for dancing and other activities. The National Guard Armory at 2761 Godwin Blvd., is also available for events with a capacity of 400 people. For more information on either of these facilities, call parks and rec and 923-2360.

A few years ago, a group of citizens banded together to begin planning a public play ground for children in Suffolk. Once the groundwork was laid, the committee held a contest among Suffolk’s elementary schools to &uot;name the playground.&uot;

After receiving hundreds of entries, the committee chose &uot;KidsZone,&uot; submitted by Kathryn Minga’s second-grade class at Mount Zion Elementary. The playground is now open and free to the public. It is located directly behind the Farm Fresh Store on North Main Street. It is free and open to all Suffolk children.

The Department of Parks and Rec also oversees several athletic fields including John F. Kennedy Park at 2325 E. Washington St. with three athletic fields. The King’s Fork field on Robb’s Drive and King’s Fork Road, has two fields for sports. There are also ball fields at Monogram field on Sleepy Hole Road; Peanut Park and Wellons field on Pender Street.

To find out more about Recreation and Parks Month, and the year-long celebration to promote quality recreational activities, go to For more information on recreational activities this summer through Suffolk Parks and Recreation, call 923-2360, e-mail or visit our website at