Explore: Green Acres Park in Hazel Park
(Crystal A. Proxmire, Oct. 24, 2018)
Hazel Park, MI – In Hazel Park there is an area that holds multiple opportunities to get fit, to enjoy nature, and to take in some interesting views. It’s called Green Acres, and if you want to enjoy a nice hour or two, this is the place to be.
The park itself has a large pavilion and a restroom building, the side of which as a brightly painted octopus done by muralist Carl Oxley at this year’s Hazel Park Art Fair. Nearby is a volley ball net, and three softball fields. Those with good memories might be amused that one scoreboard bears the name of Harmony House, a record store chain that started in the city and closed their stores between 2000-2002. One diamond is named after Bob Welch, a local star who made it the major leagues and won the Cy Young Award in 1990 playing for the Oakland Athletics.
The Hazel Park Recreation Center is also there, with a sledding hill behind it, and a Little Free Library in front. Many classes and events are held there.
Beyond the hill is a patch of giant old trees with a paved pathway for pedestrians, pets, and bicycles. At the far end of the path is a fitness park that was installed in 2017, made possible by community fundraising through the Lion’s Club. There are several pieces similar to equipment in a gym, but simple to use and easy enough to get people of a wide range of abilities moving. There’s also a fix it center for bikes, with tools and a tire pump. Near by are swing sets, a plastic play set for younger kids and metal contraptions for kids to climb on.
The path also goes to Invest Roosevelt School, a charter school with another set of play equipment. This set, however, is painted with bright rainbow colors.
A branch of the path leads to Browning Street, where a catwalk goes over I-75 just south of the I-696 interchange. This walkway with tall chain link fence is fun for kids and adults who like to watch whooshing cars whiz by below them – or watch them stopped in gridlock depending on the time of day. While this isn’t part of the park, it is a good draw for anyone trying to get their steps in.
There’s a lot to do in a relatively little space, and stuff for every age.
Green Acres Park and the Hazel Park Community Center are located at 620 Woodward Heights. Learn more about Hazel Park’s parks and recreations offerings at www.hazelpark.org/.