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Park and Recreation

Phone: 913-438-7275

7900 Renner Road, Shawnee, KS 66219

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park and recreation

For more than 50 years, the Johnson County Park & Recreation District has provided high-quality parks, park services and recreational programs in more than 6,000 acres of parkland and open green space. Each year, the District records more than 7 million park visitors and nearly 1.5 million recreation participations in over 4,000 programs. The District's contributions to the personal lives of Johnson County's citizens have earned the District local appreciation and national acclaim.

Department News

Johnson County Museum to participate in Smithsonian Magazine's 13th annual Museum Day Live on Sept. 23
September 6, 2017

The Johnson County Museum will offer free admission on Saturday, Sept.23, .as part of Smithsonian magazine’s 13th annual Museum Day Live! The museum, located at the new Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center,8788 Metcalf Ave., Overland Park, will offer all museum visitors free admission. Guests may tour the new signature exhibitions, Becoming Johnson County, and the popular KidScape experience.

“The Johnson County Museum is pleased to be a part of the Smithsonian’s Museum Day Live! program,” said Museum Director Mindi Love. "Museums are an important venue to explore our community’s shared valued and history."

The Museum Day Live! encourages museums across the United States with a wide range of diverse exhibitions to emulate the spirit of the Smithsonian Institution’s Washington DC-based facilities, which offer free admission every day. Participating museums will open their doors for free. Many museums are requiring guests to register and download tickets through the Smithsonian website, however the Johnson County Museum will not. Free admission will be offered to all visitors as part of our quarterly free admission days.  The next free day will be Wednesday, Nov. 22.

The Johnson County Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Normal admission prices are $5 for adults (18+), $4 for seniors (60+) and $3 for children 1-17. Children under 1 are free.  For more information about the Johnson County Museum, visit www.jocogov.org/museum

For more information about the Johnson County Museum's participation in Museum Day Live, contact Visitor Services Coordinator Justin Border at (913) 715-2550 or at justin.border@jocogov.org. For more information about Museum Day Live! 2017 and a full list of participating museums and cultural institutions, please visit Smithsonian.com/museumday.

The Johnson County Museum is a department of the Johnson County Park & Recreation District. 

First of two Public Hayrides offered on Sept. 24 in Shawnee Mission Park
September 1, 2017

The first of two public hayrides being offered by the Johnson County Park & Recreation District this fall at the Oak Ridge Parklands in Shawnee Mission Park will take place on Sept. 24.

In addition to fall hayrides for organized groups, each year JCPRD also offers opportunities for individuals and family members to enjoy the crisp autumn air from a tractor-drawn hayride without having to worry about reaching minimum numbers or placing a deposit. Advance registration is required.

This hayride will take place at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 24, at Oak Ridge Parklands in Shawnee Mission Park, 7460 Ogg Road, Shawnee. The cost is $7  per person and advance registration is required. Like the group program, this hayride will last approximately 60 minutes, and will be followed by a 60-minute campfire with apple cider and marshmallows. The second public hayride of the 2017 season is scheduled for Nov. 5.

To register by phone, call (913) 831-3359 or register online at jcprd.com.

For anyone interested in group hayrides, spaces are available through Nov. 19 at both Shawnee Mission Park and at Heritage Park, 16050 Pflumm Road, Olathe. Organized group hayrides also cost $7 per person but require a minimum of $80. Hayrides take place seven days a week during the above timeframe at Oak Ridge; and on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday only at Heritage Park, 16050 Pflumm Road, Olathe. Reservations must be made at least two weeks in advance of the date of the hayride. For scheduling and information, call (913) 831-3359.

To find these program in the JCPRD’s Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under fun for all and then under special events. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “hayrides.”

Flight of the Monarch event is Sept. 23 in Ernie Miller Park
September 1, 2017

Celebrating the monarch butterfly's amazing annual migration is the aim of a special event set for Saturday, Sept. 23, in Johnson County Park & Recreation District's Ernie Miller Park, 909 N. Kansas 7 Highway, Olathe.

Flight of the Monarch is the name of the event, which is for children ages eight and up accompanied by a parent or guardian. Participants will learn about monarchs and other amazing native butterflies. Participants will join in capturing, tagging, and releasing some monarchs to continue their migration to Mexico. Visit with representatives of Bridging the Gap, our cosponsor for this event, and see the beautiful wildflowers which attract the monarchs. Wear long pants to protect your legs and closed-toed shoes to protect your feet. Due to a limited number of insect nets, you are welcome to bring your own, and you will get tags to take home.

To find this program in the My JCPRD Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under youth and then under special events. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “nature.”

This event will take place from 10 a.m. to noon. The cost for the two-hour event is $5 per person, including adults, if paid in advance, or $7 if paid onsite the day of the event. Reservations are required for this program by Sept. 21 and can be obtained by calling (913) 764-7759 or register online at jcprd.com.

Drawn by late-blooming flowers in a prairie remnant which was restored in the park about 15 years ago, hundreds of butterflies each year make stops from their southern migration at Ernie Miller Park during early September. Typically, about 80 percent of these visitors have been monarchs, but there have been other species as well, including painted ladies and sulfur butterflies. The butterflies are being drawn by the tall purple blooms of the gayfeather plant, as well as by other prairie plants including goldenrod and sunflowers. Many of these plants have come up naturally following prairie restoration projects completed in late 2002 in conjunction with Kansas City Wildlands. Those projects removed a number of large eastern red cedar trees which previously choked out the sun-loving prairie plants.

The  My JCPRD Activities catalog, with information and a registration form, is available for pickup at all Johnson County Library branches. 

Intergenerational Youth Fishing Clinic set for Sept. 23 at Lexington Lake Park
September 1, 2017

Teaching your child how to handle fish, and all the other tasks associated with going fishing, can be a challenge, but a new program being offered by  Johnson County Park & Recreation District in late September can help.

Now in its second year, this intergenerational Youth Fishing Clinic is for ages six to 14 with a parent or guardian. Families are invited to come to Lexington Lake Park for 45 minutes of instruction, including knot tying, casting, and fish identification. Following instruction, the remainder of the clinic will be an opportunity for the children to fish with the assistance of their parent or guardian. We will be practicing catch and release and all participants 16 years of age and older are required to have a Kansas State fishing license. Fishing equipment and bait will be provided.

To find this program in the My JCPRD Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under youth and then under nature & outdoors. In the catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “fishing.”

This Youth Fishing Clinic will take place beginning at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 23,  at the  newly-opened Lexington Lake Park, located at 8850 Sunflower Road, De Soto. The cost for  this three-hour program is $3 per person for Johnson County residents or $4 per person for nonresidents.

Front and center of the 465-acre park, which opened to the public on July 8 or this year,  is the 27-acre lake. The property was originally constructed in the 1950s as a private fishing lake. The lake is considered a high-quality fishery with crappie and large-mouth bass.

To get to Lexington Lake Park, take Kansas Highway 10 west from Interstate 435 towards Lawrence. Exit at Lexington Avenue in De Soto and turn right going south under K-10 to 95th  Street. Turn right (west) onto 95th and go approximately 1 mile to the Sunflower Road intersection. Turn right (north) onto Sunflower Road and go approximately one-half mile, passing back under K-10 to the park entrance on your left.

For more information or to register by phone, call (913) 831-3359 or register online at jcprd.com.

This program is also eligible for credit in the Environmental dimension for the JCPRD U holistic wellness program for participants ages three to 18. Participants can complete Achievement Classes (similar to academic grade levels) and earn Achievement  Badges and Awards. To register for JCPRD U, call (913) 826-2950.

Printed copies of the My JCPRD Activities catalog are available for pickup at all Johnson County Library branches. 

First of 14 Kids' Day Out sessions at Johnson County Museum is Sept. 22
September 1, 2017

Youth ages five to 12 are invited to come have fun at the Johnson County Museum on days when school is out this fall and early winter!

During these new Kids' Day Out Programs, participants can choose from a variety of activities each day, including exploring the museum's KidScape area, as well as, art, dance, music, and down time. Be sure to bring your lunch and a water bottle. Snacks are provided. Pre-registration  is required.

In all, a total of 14 Kids' Day Out programs are planned between late September and Dec. 29. Each day's program runs from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 pm and is limited to 45 participants. To find these programs in the My JCPRD Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under youth and then under enrichment & special interests. In the printed catalog and when using the website’s advanced search,  look for the keyword “museum.”

The first Kids' Day Out program will take place on Friday, Sept. 22. Other programs are scheduled for: Friday, Oct. 13; Thursday, Oct. 26; Friday, Oct. 27; Monday, Oct. 30; Monday, Nov. 20; Tuesday, Nov. 21; Wednesday, Nov. 22; Tuesday, Dec. 21; Friday, Dec. 22; Tuesday, Dec. 26; Wednesday, Dec. 27; Thursday, Dec. 28; and Friday, Dec. 29.

Kids' Day Out will take place at the Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center, located in the former King Louie Building at 8788 Metcalf Ave., Overland Park. The cost for each 10-hour session is $30 per participant. For more information or to register by phone, call (913) 831-3359 or register online at jcprd.com. 

These programs are also eligible for credit in the Mindfulness dimension for the JCPRD U holistic wellness program for participants ages three to 18. Participants can complete Achievement Classes (similar to academic grade levels) and earn Achievement  Badges and Awards. To register for JCPRD U call Nathan at (913) 826-2950.

The Johnson County Museum is a department of the Johnson County Park & Recreation District. The My JCPRD Activities catalog, with information and a registration form, is available for pickup at all Johnson County Library branches. 

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Upcoming Events

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September 22, 2017 | 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm

Family Fishing Night

September 23, 2017 | 10:00 am to 12:00 pm

Flight of the Monarch

September 24, 2017 | 2:30 pm to 4:30 pm

Fall Public Hayride

September 29, 2017 | 12:30 pm to 3:00 pm

50 Plus Plants of the Prairie

September 30, 2017 | 10:00 am to 2:30 pm

Cars in the Park