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Sportsman’s Park: Now Open for Everyone

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Did you know that at Sportsman’s Park the Naperville Park District just opened new trails for everyone to enjoy? 

 

At a grand opening ceremony held on Sat., Oct. 3, the Naperville Park District and the City of Naperville celebrated the completion of a site remediation program and addition of new park amenities, including scenic walking trails that provide access to the ponds. A trail map can be viewed here.

Park District Executive Director Ray McGury and City Manager Doug Krieger hold the ribbon while Park Board Vice President Rich Janor cuts the ribbon to open the park.

Park District Executive Director Ray McGury and Sportsman's Club President Jim Monk look on as Naperville Mayor Steve Chirico comments at the grand opening.

Sportsman’s Park is located on the west side of West Street, just south of Von Oven Scout Reservation and north of the Ron Ory Community Garden Plots.

If driving, look for the sign for Sportsman’s Park and follow the long driveway to find a parking area, the Sportsman’s Clubhouse, the trapshooting range, and access to the trails. If walking, you can access the new trails from the sidewalk along West St. at the gate near Martin Ave. or at the entry drive.  Or park at the Garden Plots and walk to the gate along the entry drive.  Access the Google street map here.

Sportsman’s Park also continues to host public trapshooting programs in cooperation with the Naperville Sportsman’s Club.  The three lighted trap fields are open twice weekly:  on Thursdays from 6:00-10:00 p.m. and on Sundays from 12:00 noon-6:00 p.m. Please note that the park and trail located inside the fenced area closes for all uses except trapshooting during these hours.

Sportsman's trapshooting stations are now ADA accessible with energy efficient, low spill sports lighting.

The renovated Sportsman’s Park Community Clubhouse is ADA accessible, is used to host several Park District programs and also is available for rental through the Park District.

History of Sportsman’s Park and Project Background

Sportsman’s Park has been part of Naperville’s heritage for many years.  It was dedicated to the City of Naperville in 1936 as part of the Caroline Martin Mitchell bequest to be used and enjoyed by the public. 

When the Naperville Park District began leasing the land from the City in 1988, shooting sports had already been taking place for decades, reflecting the pioneer heritage of Naperville’s earlier days.

Unfortunately, that tradition included use of lead shot, which later was banned and replaced by steel shot.  In the late 1980s and mid 1990s the Park District had the soil tested, and then received a No Further Remediation letter from the Environmental Protection Agency for some areas of Sportsman’s Park and the surrounding land, indicating that these areas were safe for public use.  However, the park had to be maintained under a special permit with a large section of the park fenced off and signs posted instructing visitors to keep out. In 2011, with a mission to take good care of the community’s parkland as well as to make it accessible to everyone, the Park District sought a way to remediate the impact of past shooting practices while enabling multiple uses of the park going forward.

In October 2011 the District, in cooperation with the City of Naperville, entered into a Site Remediation Program with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency. The 4-year process included engineering, testing, removal of vegetation, further testing, and removal and replacement of soil.  Remediation site work was complete in late 2014, and park landscaping and improvements were complete in 2015.  With a No Further Remediation letter now in hand for the entire park, a major project goal has been met.

Thanks to the collaboration of the City of Naperville and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, the Park District is able to open new trails for everyone to enjoy, while still providing twice-weekly opportunities for the sport of trapshooting in cooperation with the Naperville Sportsman’s Club.  We know from community surveys that trails are one of the top amenities that residents seek at the Park District. The Sportsman’s Site Remediation Program made it possible to open these trails in a natural setting close to downtown Naperville.

Assistance from the City of Naperville’s Special Events and Cultural Amenities Fund

We are grateful for multi-year financial support from the City of Naperville’s Special Events and Cultural Amenities fund for the park improvements that were recently completed.

 

These amenities include the pervious pavement parking lot, a new driveway, energy efficient sports lighting, ADA accessible shooting stations and clubhouse renovations, a new, loop trail with access to the ponds, and a variety of native plants, shrubs and trees that will enhance the natural habitat.

We invite you to walk the new trails and return often to enjoy this unique park.

 


Connect your business’s brand with a well-known and respected one like the Naperville Park District’s and reach a large, active and diverse audience.

To learn more about our sponsorship opportunities contact
Stacey Fontechia Sales and Sponsorship Manager at 630-848-3575 or at sfontechia@napervilleparks.org.

Looking for an opportunity to have a positive impact on people’s lives while building a fun and dynamic career? Consider the Naperville Park District! It takes all kinds of skills, knowledge and talent to serve the recreation needs of the Naperville community. If you’re passionate about the outdoors, staying active, having fun and encouraging others to do the same, then check out our part-time and full-time career opportunities.

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Funds raised through the Naperville Parks Foundation support the Naperville Park District’s Fee Assistance Program. The Naperville Parks Foundation supports the recreation needs and desires of the residents of Naperville – encouraging health and wellness, fitness, family time, and fun. The Foundation supports the mission of making recreation of all kinds accessible to everyone across the community, regardless of socioeconomic circumstances.

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On Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011 Naperville Park District officials heard the good news for which they have been waiting for many months: the District has achieved national accreditation through the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA).

The decision was announced at the NRPA national conference in Atlanta following a formal hearing before the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA).

Naperville is only the second park district in Illinois to earn this distinction and the 104th nationally accredited agency in the nation; there are more than 10,000 recreation agencies in the United States. The Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies accredits a handful of park agencies each year that have completed a multi-step process involving a self-review by the agency, a site visit, and an evaluation and formal report by the Commission.

“We are extremely proud to bring this honor to Naperville,” said Park District Executive Director Ray McGury. “It’s an affirmation of our high standards and also an encouragement to continue bringing high quality recreation and parks experiences to our community.”

The Park District’s accreditation process began approximately one year ago and included an extensive self-evaluation by staff and a 5-day visit from CAPRA reviewers this past July. Maintaining the accreditation requires annual reports and 5- and 10-year reviews.

Park District staff members noted that the CAPRA process has helped them see the big picture, focus on long term goals and plans, review plans more regularly, organize documents so that they are accessible and useable, and collaborate more effectively with other departments and outside organizations.

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On Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011 Naperville Park District officials heard the good news for which they have been waiting for many months: the District has achieved national accreditation through the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA).

The decision was announced at the NRPA national conference in Atlanta following a formal hearing before the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA).

Naperville is only the second park district in Illinois to earn this distinction and the 104th nationally accredited agency in the nation; there are more than 10,000 recreation agencies in the United States. The Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies accredits a handful of park agencies each year that have completed a multi-step process involving a self-review by the agency, a site visit, and an evaluation and formal report by the Commission.

“We are extremely proud to bring this honor to Naperville,” said Park District Executive Director Ray McGury. “It’s an affirmation of our high standards and also an encouragement to continue bringing high quality recreation and parks experiences to our community.”

The Park District’s accreditation process began approximately one year ago and included an extensive self-evaluation by staff and a 5-day visit from CAPRA reviewers this past July. Maintaining the accreditation requires annual reports and 5- and 10-year reviews.

Park District staff members noted that the CAPRA process has helped them see the big picture, focus on long term goals and plans, review plans more regularly, organize documents so that they are accessible and useable, and collaborate more effectively with other departments and outside organizations.

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Our Mission
We provide recreation and park experiences that promote healthy lives, healthy minds and a healthy community.
 
Our Vision
To be a national leader in parks and recreation providing and promoting high quality experiences and facilities at a great value to our community.
 
Core Values
Health and Wellness, Environmental Education, Stewardship and Sustainability, Community Enrichment, Public Safety, Accessibility, Personal Growth and Enrichment
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