Henry Jackson Park a hidden gem

Published 12:01 pm Friday, October 7, 2016

By Amanda Wheeler, Contributing Columnist

Hidden inside residential neighborhoods near downtown Danville, you will find a secret gem — Henry Jackson Park.

The main park entrance and parking lot is at the end of Crosshill Road off of Maple Avenue on the north side of Danville.

While Danville is better known for Millennium Park, Jackson Park is a lovely little park of rolling hills, walking paths and disc golf holes lined with the back yards of many lucky Danville residents.

If you didn’t know where you were going, you might think you were just lost in a quiet neighborhood, but after the short drive, Crosshill Road dead ends into the park.

Henry Jackson Park is never very busy and is always a really relaxing place to visit. It’s a well-maintained and clean area.

Running around the perimeter of the park is a nice paved walking trail where people walk dogs and jog. On my most recent visit to the park, my husband and I took our dog for a nice walk and played a little frisbee golf along the way.

One of the main features of the park is its disc golf course — Danville’s only disc golf course and one of the nicest courses in the Bluegrass. The course has 18 holes, with beginner and advanced tees for most holes. The course is beautifully designed with excellent signage and a wide variety of holes taking you to every corner of the park. When playing other disc golf courses, I’ve run into issues with confusing or little signage, but this course’s signs are very clear and informative, with graphics showing where you are and where the target is on each hole.

The course can be challenging, especially if you use the advanced tees, but its open fairways mean beginners don’t have to worry about losing their discs. One of my favorite holes is 16, which has the disc target inside the top of an old tree stump.

There are also two baseball fields, a tennis court, several playgrounds and a shelter. My niece has personally tested the main playground and she had a wonderful time.

You could easily spend an entire afternoon playing disc golf, eating a picnic lunch and walking the trail.

The park is dog- and kid-friendly. Dogs who like walks can enjoy the walking path and dogs who enjoy exploring can walk with you through the fields. The park’s trees and geography combine for some beautiful views while walking. There are benches located all around the park so you can take a rest or just enjoy being outdoors.

Road Trip Facts:

— The park is open daily from 8 a.m. to dark.

— The park is located at the end of Crosshill Road off of Maple Avenue (Harrodsburg Road/U.S. 127). Maple Avenue is accessible from Main Street or the north end of the U.S. 127 Bypass.

— Other things to do in the area include Millennium Park, The Great American Dollhouse Museum, Constitution Square park and the restaurants and shops in downtown Danville.