Washington Park, designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, is a nearly 135 acre home to a wide diversity of birds, wildlife and lovely mature trees. Host to a large lagoon and natural area, it is a beautiful place to get outdoors and the Urban Ecology Center branch here is stocked with canoes, fishing poles and snow shoes to make your visit to this park a fun one now matter what time of year you visit.
Here are some highlights:
- Our Young Scientists Club! Every weekday we have exciting afterschool programs for kids. Your child can join our Young Scientists Club and go on scientific explorations, do yoga, plant native plants, plant gardens and harvest food or remove invasive plant species with our experienced education team.
- Our NEW Native Wisconsin Animal Room! Have you ever wanted to get close to a turtle? Befriend a frog? Visit the Center's new Native Wisconsin Animal Room, complete with a 560 gallon fish tank, to find turtles, snakes, frogs, and fish. Ask a staff member for a schedule of when you can help feed or meet the animals up close.
- Fresh water lagoon and Fredrick Law Olmsted design features - Discover the history and beauty of this remarkable park and explore the native plant communities and wetlands our hundreds of volunteers have been planting. In summer be sure to paddle a canoe out to the island and in winter bring your ice skates or borrow some of ours and glide around the island.
- Gardens - Butterfly, rain, container, vegetable and water gardens await your discovery.
Building our new Native Wisconsin Animal room and 560 gallon fish tank!
Washington Park is surrounded by a community of people looking to revitalize their neighborhood park, preserving it from crime and neglect. We are a proud partner of many community organizations working towards a peaceful and beautiful park.
Why Washington Park?
In 2004, a team of students from UW-Milwaukee’s Geography Department (Peter Strand, Wen Lin and Jayoung Cho) assessed green spaces in Milwaukee, using criteria we identified as keys to our success in Riverside Park. In their final assessment of the best green spaces for urban environmental education, Washington Park topped this list.
After discussions with Sue Black, Director of Milwaukee County Parks of beginning a program at the park, we were invited to meetings with County Parks, Lisbon Avenue Neighborhood Development, Local Initiative Service Corporation, Neighbors United for Washington Park, Washington Park Partners and the Washington Park Beat. Since Washington Park is four miles from Riverside Park, we will have seamless coverage from Lake Michigan all the way to Wauwatosa!