The City of Willmar has over 30 parks spread throughout the community, each with a wide variety of opportunities for residents to participate in. Whether you’re interested in a leisurely walk or bike ride on one of our scenic trails, or looking for a playground for the kids, you're sure to find the right spot somewhere in Willmar. Willmar's most notable and Popular Park Destinations serve a wide variety of interests. From Playground Parks to Dog Parks, there's a place for everyone to enjoy leisure time outdoors.
Popular Park Destinations
Parks & Recreation Master Plan
In 2013, the City of Willmar contracted with the Mid-Minnesota Development Commission to begin the development of an overall City Park Plan. During that process, it became evident the City would need assistance with drawing concepts and overall layout of parks. In May 2014, the City of Willmar contracted the services of SRF Landscape Architecture to complete the needed work. The following presentation are concepts that have been developed with staff and Park user groups. None of these concepts are finalized.
Parks & Master Plan
For information on all activities and programming that takes place in the parks and on the athletic fields, visit the Willmar Parks & Recreation Activity Page.
Reserve a Shelter
Robbins Island has a total of 7 shelters available. The Shelter at Rice Park is a 3-season shelter which is also available for rent. All shelters are available to reserve from May 1 thru September 30. Open shelters at other city wide parks are free to use on a first come, first serve basis.
WALKING AND BIKING TRAILS
The City of Willmar boasts an abundance or walking and biking trails with a variety of terrains from light gravel trails, dirt pathways, to smooth paved trails connecting throughout the city and a highly popular biking trail that connects to neighboring communities. Our trail system is diverse; traveling through parks, over bridges, and alongside lakes, ponds, and fields with benches in some areas offering the chance to rest and view nature.
GLACIAL LAKES STATE TRAIL (from MN DNR)
The Glacial Lakes State Trail is located on a former Burlington Northern Railroad grade, and is generally wheelchair accessible. The trail is paved for 22 miles between Willmar, Spicer, New London, Hawick, and the Kandiyohi/Stearns County line. An additional 5 miles from Richmond to Roscoe in Stearns County is also paved. From Willmar to New London there is 10 miles of grass treadway for horseback riding, while the New London to the Kandiyohi/Stearns County line segment has grass shoulders to accommodate this activity.
Primary summer use of the developed trail includes, hiking, bicycling, horseback riding and in-line skating. Within Kandiyohi County, the trail is groomed for winter snowmobile use, and in Stearns County, snowmobile use is allowed on signed sections only, however studded tracks are prohibited on the asphalt surface. The many lakes make this area a popular tourist destination. The towns along the trail provide access points, rest stops and other services to trail users. You will need a horse pass if you will be horseback riding, and for snowmobiling, a snowmobile must be registered or have a snowmobile state trail sticker. No other fees or passes are required to use the trail.
The gently rolling topography of Central Minnesota was created by glaciers retreating 10,000 years ago. The trail cuts across the border between Minnesota's western tallgrass prairie and eastern deciduous forest. Though much of the area has been cultivated, remnants of virgin prairie, wetlands, and scattered woodlots can still be found along the railroad right-of-way. Whitetail deer, numerous small mammals, birds, reptiles and butterflies can be seen along the trail.