60 Ways to Love Your Parks
How do we love thee? Let’s count the ways! We’ve got a list of 60 fun ways you and your family can love, enjoy and explore Mansfield parks, and we want to see you try them all! Post a photo of you or you family doing any of the activities on the list and tag our page (@MansfieldTxParks on Facebook or Instagram) to enter. Each week, we’ll draw one winner to get special Mansfield Parks prize packs, which could include anything from t-shirts and stickers to skating and water park passes or more. The first family to complete ALL SIXTY activities will win a HUGE prize…so big we can’t even tell you what it is yet! The list is long but it’s a lot of fun, so get out there and start playing!
Note: Post must be set to public for our staff to see your post and tag and include you in the contest. Private posts can be entered by screenshotting the post and emailing it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Weekly winner will be chosen by random draw of all posts tagged that week. Grand Prize winner will be the first documented by park staff, either through tagged posts or emails, to complete all tasks.
1. Go for a night walk and enjoy the stars
Here’s an easy list of constellations you can try to identify
2. Try some yoga in the fresh air
Beginning yogi? Try these simple poses good for all ages
3. Play catch or frisbee
Got some talented athletes to work with? Up your game and try out Ultimate Frisbee!
4. Volunteer for the parks
Sign up here to be notified of volunteer opportunities, or just take an hour to pick up trash you see!
5. Read a book under the trees
Need a new book? The Library has tons to choose from and they’re all free!
6. Download iNaturalist app and try to identify plants and creatures
Click here to see all the species already documented in Mansfield and create an account of your own
7. Go fishing in one of our ponds
Here’s a list of the ponds to choose from, rules & other info
8. Create chalk art on the sidewalk
This list has endless ideas of art to create or games to play with only chalk and imagination!
9. Play sand volleyball at Katherine Rose Park
Address & hours for Rose Park
10. Hunt fallen leaves to make leaf rubbings
Use this interactive guide to identify the leaves you find
11. Visit a pond to look for ducks, fish or frogs
Here’s a list of creatures you might find in Mansfield parks; use the fishing link above to find a pond nearby
12. Watch (or play in!) a game at Skinner Sports Complex
Address & hours for Skinner Sports Complex; games begin in late February
13. Bring a pad and draw what inspires you
Some tips on how to teach kids observational drawing & why it’s so important to creativity
15. Play a friendly game of tennis
Did you know Mansfield Parks offers a variety of lessons, including adult leagues and family tennis days?
16. Play a classic game like hopscotch or red rover
Check out this list of playground favorites
17. Try to identify the flowers at Serenity Gardens
Located within Julian Feild Park, it’s a beautiful garden meant for reflection & remembering loved ones
18. Use the open park land to have a dance off!
Start with this list of eight iconic moves everyone should know, see what your family can add!
19. Make a Boomerang or TikTok video on the playground
Download Boomerang here for super short looped videos or TikTok here for slightly longer mini videos and see what you can create
21. Go for a litter hike and pick up any trash you can find
Picking up litter while jogging is a popular Swedish trend called ’plogging,’ give it a try!
22. Play color bingo; walk until you spot all the colors in the rainbow
Try this simple tutorial to make a scavenger hunt, or just walk and talk about them as you go
23. Race each other down the slide
Use this list of all the Mansfield parks with playgrounds to find your battleground
24. Fly a kite on a windy day
Been a while since you launched one? Check out an easy refresher course with great tips for getting airborne
25. Explore Jeffreys Crossing bridge on the WCLT from the McKnight Park West entrance
Click here for a map to McKnight West
26. Play hide and go seek
Got hiding experts? Try one of these unique variations
27. Play on the newest playground at Bell Park
Click here for a map to Bell Park
28. Go for a walk and play 20 Questions or Would you Rather
Here’s a great list of 101 questions to get you started
29. Try out each of the outdoor fitness machines at Rose or Chandler Parks
Rose Park is located at 303 N Walnut Creek Drive; Chandler is just down the road at 1530 N Walnut Creek Drive
30. Have a birthday party or other celebration
Need to rent a pavilion for a designated party space? Get more info here or call the MAC for details
31. Bring a magnifying glass and explore the parks up close and personal
Did you know you can turn an iPhone into a magnifying glass? Here’s how!
32. Practice (or learn) cartwheels
You’re never too old to learn! If you’re already a pro, see how many you can do in a row
33. Visit Chandler Park and ride a scooter or skateboard in the skate pad
Chandler Park is just adjacent to Wester Middle School; you can use the school parking lot when school is not in session
34. Play horseshoes at Rose Park
Follow the official rules or just toss them for fun. Bring your own horseshoes but use the Rose Park sand pits for free
35. Bring your dog (or baby!) for a walk
Try the Walnut Creek Linear Trail or any of the looped trails at our other parks
36. Breathe the fresh air and see who can identify different smells
This printable list has items you can find with all different senses, or make a list of your own as you notice different smells
37. Explore the woods via the nature trail at McClendon East
Be sure to stay on the trail as you walk!
38. Visit one of our Public-Private facilities and see what fun they have to offer
Our five public-private partners each offer unique amenities and activities
39. Tour the MAC and grab a program catalog
The MAC is located at 106 Wisteria and open M-F, 9am-9pm or Saturdays 9am-4pm
40. Count the squirrels and give them names
Did you know NYC takes an annual census of the squirrels in Central Park? We don’t need an accurate count, but would love to see your favorite local furry-tailed creature and what you think their name should be!
41. Listen to the birds chirp and see if you can identify breeds
The National Zoo has a handy website where you can hear samples of different calls to confirm your guesses
42. Have a nature scavenger hunt looking for leaves, acorns, rocks, etc
This site has a great list to start from, and you can "collect" your findings via checks, photos or actual gathering
43. Play a game of friendly family softball or kickball at McClendon West
McClendon West is off Broad Street just west of Historic Downtown
45. Take a walk through Historic Downtown to spot all the murals then enjoy the natural beauty on the Pond Branch Linear Trail
Pond Branch Linear Trail is easily accessed from The Backyard parking lot. See more on Downtown Mansfield here.
46. Challenge each other to races, long jump and other field day contests
This extensive list has tons of game ideas; keep it simple or get lots of friends involved!
47. Check out the new WCLT extension from Phillip Thompson Soccer Complex
The new phase opens in late February, so be sure to wait for construction to complete!
48. Have a family photo session, taking turns playing photographer and model
We’ve got tons of photogenic spaces, be sure to check out our list of tips before you start snapping
49. Learn jump rope songs and games
Do you remember these classics? Pass them on to your kids or learn them together for fun, active playtime
50. Eat ice cream or another treat
From donuts and ice cream and more...lots of fun dessert places in Mansfield! Find a new one or visit a favorite and take it to the park to savor in the great outdoors
51. Put on a show for each other in the amphitheater at Town Park
The Town Park amphitheater is great for impromptu performances but can also be rented for plays or events
52. Meet up with friends for a playdate at the playground
Use this map of all Mansfield parks to find the one nearest you, or discover a new park you haven’t tried yet!
53. Bring your grandparent or neighbor to the park and ask them to tell you about their life
Get the conversation started with these questions and follow where the answers take you
54. Start at McKnight East and run, walk or bike to Town Park
McKnight East is the Phase I easternmost trailhead of the WCLT and is almost 2 miles from Town Park
55. Bring your homework for an outdoor study session
Research says studying in the fresh air benefits you in a variety of ways, so grab those books and come to the park!
56. Play tag or touch football on the open soccer fields at Hardy Allmon
Hardy Allmon is a rentable athletic field, so be sure no practices are in session and don’t hold organized practice without a rental. But feel free to come run the open grass for fun when it’s available!
57. Go for a nature walk at Oliver Nature Park
Oliver Nature Park is a unique natural preserve located at 1650 Matlock Road
58. Say hello to our Park Service Specialist Garrett or MPD officer Roman and take a selfie with one of them!
Both patrol the parks throughout the week and weekend to answer questions and assist visitors
59. Bring your pup to Mans Best Field Dog Park (don’t have a dog? Come visit the pups already there!)
Mans Best Field opens in the end of February at 610 W. Broad St.
60. Come up with an activity we haven’t thought of and share it with us!
We can’t wait to see your ideas!