Parks & Recreation

Lakewood enjoys 600+ acres of parkland across 14 parks. Our parks feature wildlife, beaches, playgrounds, sports fields, trails, and more. The City also organizes community events and activities for kids and older adults.

Lakewood Parks & Recreation
6000 Main St SW, 1st Floor
Lakewood, WA 98499

(253) 983-7887
[email protected]

Phone & Staff Hours:
Monday to Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Report a Park Maintenance Issue:
(253) 267-1628

Photos and Videos
Important Links


Prairie Monitoring In Progress: Old Settlers Cemetery

Did you know the Old Settlers Cemetery has one of the most pristine prairie ecosystems in the area? Work is now underway to inventory and monitor the property and its natural environment. There will be limited mowing or other landscaping maintenance on site while volunteers conduct the inventory across the seasons. A stewardship plan will be developed from the inventory list.

Pardon Our Dust: Moving the “Big One” (Tenzler Log) to Ft. Steilacoom Park

In 2023, the City of Lakewood agreed to take ownership of the “Big One”, a large log section located in front of the Flora B. Tenzler Memorial Library, owned by the Pierce County Library System.

On June 13, 2024 the “Big One” was successfully moved from its enclosure at the now-shuttered Lakewood library branch to its new home in Fort Steilacoom Park.

Big One History: The massive cut section of a Douglas fir tree is known by a couple names: The Tenzler Log, or more often than not: The Big One. The tree was born in 1359 and cut in 1945, making it 586 years old when felled. In 1946, with great fanfare, the log was unveiled to the public and displayed at the Northwest Door Company Plant in Tacoma. The company’s president, Herman E. Tenzler, added signs showing the age of the tree and famous events during its lifetime. In 1965 they moved and installed the log at the Lakewood Library. It was on display 24 hours a day in a specially built glass enclosure at the front of the library.  At 12′ 9″ in diameter and 40′ in circumference, it is said to be the largest Douglas fir tree ever to be cut.  The section on display weighs approximately 9¼ tons.

In November, 2023 the Lakewood City Council reviewed various options to house the historic log. Ultimately, a decision was made to rehome the log at Fort Steilacoom Park. The following considerations went into that decision:

  • Regional Park location with historic amenities
  • Parking nearby and access to trails
  • ADA access exists throughout the site
  • Hundreds of thousands of annual visitors
    High visibility for public viewing
  • Natural surveillance based on park visitors
  • Could be located along Nisqually Loop Trail
  • Could add Indigenous /Nisqually history to current American historic markers
  • Existing historic features and interpretive displays along Discovery Trail(s) to supplement experience.
  • Natural setting to match display
    Scale of installation is appropriate to site
  • Easy access for semi-truck and crane
  • Space to add an enclosure to support the display without encroachment to existing site amenities

On Feb. 5, 2024, Parks, Recreation and Community Services provided an update on a current partnership with the Nisqually Tribe to curate an outdoor exhibit along Waughop Lake in Fort Steilacoom Park. As part of the themes being explored, a stop at the historic log was discussed as a place to share additional information.

On March 14, 2024, an interlocal agreement between Pierce County Library System (PCLS) and City of Lakewood was formalized to receive the historic log and place it at Fort Steilacoom Park.

On April 8, 2024, staff prepared a summary of costs and recommendation for council action to pursue construction of a log cradle, and shelter for the historic log at Fort Steilacoom Park.

On June 13, 2024 The Big One was relocated from the shuttered Lakewood library branch to Fort Steilacoom Park. It is now located alongside the walking path headed to Waughop Lake, just behind the H-Barn and across the path from the paved parking lot. By fall 2024 an enclosure will be in place to protect The Big One, while still allowing the public access to view it and learn about its history and the history of the region.

Additional resources:

Springbrook Park Improvements complete

Lakewood’s Springbrook Park has new additions ready for public use. The city spent 2022 and 2023 upgrading the park to add new amenities and expand offerings. Improvements include a dog park, walking paths, new basketball courts, and a pump track where kids and adults can ride bikes around a loop. The park’s community garden was also moved and enlarged.

City Planning Improvements to Wards Lake Park

The City intends to begin improvements by early 2023. Plans include the addition of a dog park, an ADA-accessible walking trail loop around the lake, a new bridge, and a “pump track”.

Photos and Videos

A man holds a fish that he caught on the docks of Harry Todd Park.
A fisherman releases a yellow perch he caught from the new Harry Todd Park dock.
Two men facing opposite directions push wheelbarrows.
Volunteers help out at Parks Appreciation Day.
Three paddleboarders enjoy the water at American Lake Park on a sunny day.
Paddle boarders enjoy American Lake.
A woman laughs as she talks to a customer at her flower stand at Lakewood Farmers Market.
The opening day of the Lakewood, WA Farmers Market on Tuesday, June 6, 2023.
A young girl sings at the Pavilion at Fort Steilacoom park during a summer concert event.
Summer Nights at the Pavilion Concerts is a perfect way to unwind after a long summer day.
Two men jump on "extreme" trampolines" at Lakewood SummerFEST.
Friends enjoying the “Extreme Trampoline,” along with other activities at the annual Lakewood Summerfest.

Community GardensLakewood Art
Off-Leash Dog ParkLegacy Plan 2020
Lakefront Street-EndsAmerican Lake Park