Park Shelter Form ( you may also reserve Shelters Online - go to Recreation page )
Park(s) Facility/Usage Request Form (download form) - this is not shelter form
Metal Detector Permit Application (download form)
Metal Detecting City Map; Code of Ethics
A list of the acres of parks and the lengths of trails in Mason City
East Park is located on the East side of Mason City, containing 57.6 acres of magnificent parkland. It was established in 1909. There are two scenic rivers that enhance the immense beauty of this park, the Winnebago River and Willow Creek. The park has three main entrances, East State Street, Virginia Avenue, and 4th Northeast. The park features a variety of activities such as picnics, 9-hole disc golf, 3-tennis courts, volleyball, basketball, fishing, and a sledding hill. Numerous pieces of playground equipment are located throughout the park and at every shelter house. The most popular play area is the Prairie Playground located at the East State Street entrance next to the train. It is a maze of playground equipment built in the fall of 1998 by community volunteers. The park sports a 2.08 mile, 8 foot wide hard surface trail system that contains two scenic pedestrian bridge crossings and connects to every shelter house in the park, as well as the garden area, playground, band shell and gazebo.
The park has five shelter houses, a beautiful gazebo, a band shell and 369 parking spaces. Reservations are taken from January 2nd to September 30th of each year. Shelter houses #3 and #4 and the Prairie Playground have restroom facilities. All shelter houses have electricity and drinking fountains.
The band shell is host to the Mason City Municipal Band. Concerts are held on Sunday evenings throughout the summer. The band shell also hosts the annual Band Festival activities and the annual Civil War Reenactments. Those dates vary each year.
The 1912 steam locomotive and tender ("Rotary Cannonball") was donated to the city by the American Crystal Sugar Company. The locomotive was placed in East Park on September 1, 1959. Its weight is 169 tons. It is 67 feet long by 10.5 feet wide and is 15.5 feet high. The American Locomotive Company of Schenectady, New York built it for the Minneapolis and St. Louis Railroad in December 1912. It was know as locomotive number 457 it is a type 2-8-0 locomotive that used coal and steam as fuel. http://www.friendsofthe457.org
The Men's Garden Club is very active in the park. The flowers around the gazebo and duck pond area are some of the most beautiful in the state. There are two beautiful water fountains, trickling rock waterfalls surrounded by beautiful domestic and native wild flowers. The park also contains some of the most magnificent towering oak trees in the state. The Garden Club takes great pride in its work, so don't miss out on this beautiful spectacle.
The Margaret MacNider Campground is located across the Winnebago River to the north.
While in the area take a walk along East State Street toward the Central Business District and view some of finest older homes in Mason City.
Georgia Hanford Park
Georgia Hanford Park is located on the southeast side of Mason City, containing 59.73 acres of parkland. It was established in 1963. Mason Creek traverses the park creating two man-made ponds. The park has two main entrances, South Pennsylvania Avenue, and South Georgia Avenue. The park features the Arthur J. Gerk Arboretum, 1.26 miles of walking trail, volleyball, basketball, a baseball diamond, playground equipment and a large shelter house complete with electricity, water, and restrooms.
The Arthur J. Gerk Arboretum is in its infant stage and when it becomes mature should be one of Mason City's premier parks. The park contains numerous tree species, prairie flowers and is a walk through style arboretum set in rolling farmland.
Lester Milligan Park
Lester Milligan Park is located on South Pierce Avenue on the southwest side of Mason City, containing 81.07 acres of parkland. The park contains two ponds for fishing (stocked in the winter with lake trout). The main entrance is on South Pierce Avenue. The park has a shelter house complete with electricity, water and restrooms. Activities include fishing, ice fishing swimming (no lifeguard) and playground equipment.
The park sports 1.98 miles of scenic walking, hiking and biking trails.
Margaret MacNider Campgrounds
The Margaret MacNider Campground is located on Birch Drive just west of North Kentucky Avenue, containing 22.6 acres of parkland. The park was established in 1958. The park is open from about mid April to mid October depending on weather conditions. A sanitary dump station is provided and most sites have electrical and water hookups. Restroom and shower facilities are also provided.
The Mason City Municipal Swimming Pool is located to the west of the camping area on the same ground. The pool has a water slide and two diving boards. There is a small play area, a basketball hoop and volleyball for activities.
East Park is located to the south and across the Winnebago River. It is less than a five- minute walk from the campground.
Frederick Hanford Park
Frederick Hanford Park is located on the southwest side of Mason City, containing 21.6 acres of parkland. It was established in 1958. The parks main entrance is at 23rd and South Monroe Avenue. The park features three adult softball complexes and a shelter house with water, electricity and restroom facilities. There is playground equipment located next to the shelter house.
Norris Youth Softball Complex
Norris Youth Softball Complex is located on the east side of Mason City, containing 10.6 acres of parkland. It was established in 1992. The parks main entrance is at 2nd Street Northeast and North Tennessee Avenue. The park features five youth softball fields, and a concession stand with restroom facilities. The fields are well lit for evening and night games and there is ample parking for anyone wishing to enjoy the excitement of a game of softball.
Parker's Woods Parker's Woods is located on the west side of Mason City, containing 13.00 acres of parkland. It was established in 1939. Willow Creek flows through the park and the river is suitable for fishing and wading. The park is located at 1st Street Northwest and North Jackson Avenue. The park features a variety of activities such as picnics, 3-tennis courts, volleyball, basketball, and fishing. Numerous pieces of playground equipment are located throughout the park. The park contains a shelter house with water, electricity and restroom facilities.
Central Park is located in the center of Downtown Mason City, containing 2.2 acres of magnificent parkland. It was established in 1874. The park features total relaxation a magnificent view of downtown. On the south end of the park is the Park Inn Hotel featuring historic Frank Lloyd Wright Architecture. On the easterly end of the park is the Civil War Statue. The statue has gone through renovation and was replaced on its pedestal in September 1999. The monument was erected in 1884 as a memorial to those individuals from Cerro Gordo County, who fought and died in the Civil Was (War of the Rebellion).
Asbury Park is located on the east edge of town on Hwy. 18 East, containing 2.66 acres of relaxing parkland. The park is set along the Winnebago River and provides, fishing and total relaxation. This is a great place to sit on a picnic table and read your favorite book. The park is also a great place for wildlife and bird watching. The multipurpose trail to North Iowa Area Community College originates at this park and is a spectacular 2.15-mile trail with three creek crossings. The trail follows Ideal Creek to the college and ends by winding along the shores of the man-made ponds on the college campus. In the evenings you can eye deer and water fowl. The park was established in 1956.
MacNider Woods is located along Willow Creek, east of North Pierce Avenue and to south of Hoover School, containing 28.78 acres of wooded land. The park is set along Willow Creek which is the second largest river bisecting the town. The park contains a lime chip surfaced multipurpose trail which interconnects with the city trail system. The park was established in 1958.