Kieffer Park is located at the south end of Old Valley Road on the west side of St. Charles south of West 12th Street. The park was made possible by local resident Paul Kieffer, former owner of Sherwood Mobile Home Park, who donated 14 acres of land adjacent to the mobile home park for use as a city park. He also donated the funds that were used toward the purchase of new playground equipment and a pavilion. The future plan for the park is to provide a space for soccer enthusiasts with its wide open space.
Whispering Hills Park is located off of Cottonwood Drive in the heart of the Whispering Hills Subdivision. This park was donated by Dale and Vicki Gathje, owner/operators of Gathje Construction. This park consists of 9 acres and was the first of two parks that were created as a result of the Parkland Dedication Ordinance that was adopted in the early 2000s. The Gathje’s donated the land, a number of trees and landscaping. The park features a playground area, a fountain for the pond, and a paved walking/bike trail around the pond. Parking is available.
Located at the western entrance of St. Charles along State Highway 14, City Park is one of the welcoming landmarks of St. Charles. The St. Charles City Park consists of 31 acres and is both the City’s largest park and the City’s most utilized in the St. Charles Park system due to its accessible location on Hwy 14 at 719 West 6th Street. For that reason is the most developed in terms of playground equipment, recreational functionality, and bathroom facilities. It features three pavilions that can be rented for small gatherings and parties, four sand volleyball courts, an open green space that it is utilized for various activities including soccer, kickball, frisbee toss, or a game of catch football. Two sets of children’s playground equipment as well as a climbing wall can offer different challenges for children of all ages. It also features two regulation sized softball fields that are utilized by the local school district with the South Branch of the Whitewater River serving as the backdrop. Bike/walking trails meander along the banks of the Whitewater River and help to connect to the City’s larger trail system that also connects to the adjacent space, known as Kaehler’s Field, that features a practice football and baseball field as well as a small skate park. Ample parking is available.
Meadow View Park is located in the Meadow View Subdivision on the northwest side of St. Charles off of Brubaker Drive. The park is approximately 9 acres and was a park donated by Geib Construction as part of the Parkland Dedication Ordinance. The park features a baseball diamond, a playground and available parking.
Jessens Park consists of 30 acres located in the southeast section of the City next to the St. Charles Golf Course. This park, with its proximity to the golf course and its natural setting, offering residents and guests alike various amenities of activities and scenery. While the park consists of a pavilion and playground, that is only the beginning. The park features the City’s only dog park that was a partnership with the St. Charles Lions. In addition, the other main feature of the park is Jessen’s Pond, which is a natural spring-fed pond. In a partnership with the Minnesota DNR, the pond is stocked with small panfish like Sunnies and Bluegill. While the pond is geared toward the novice and youth fishermen, it is open to all, and state licenses are required. If outdoor frisbee fun is your game, the park also features a 18-hole frisbee golf course that takes you into the woods with several challenging holes. If winter is your time though, the Jessen’s park sledding hill is a 200+ foot experience that is fun for all ages.
Brookwood Park was developed in 2000 and consists of 2.5 acres and is located on the north end of Whitewater Avenue. The park features playground equipment and a pavilion. Following the flood of 2007, the former trailer park homes that were located in the flood-prone area were relocated and with the help of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the City acquired the property and constructed an area that now serves as a local Park & Ride space for residents traveling to either Rochester or Winona via the public transit service. The local snowmobile enthusiasts club, the Whitewater Trailblazers, have donated money to various projects within the park over time.