For parks weekend programs information, please contact
the Park Naturalist at (845) 298-4602
A primary goal of all county services is the enhancement of the quality of life for all county residents, and the Parks Division accomplishes this by operating six active facilities: Bowdoin Park, a 301 acre park in the southwestern part of the county; Wilcox Park, which contains 615 acres in the north central part of the county; Quiet Cove Riverfront Park in the Town of Poughkeepsie, a 27 acre park located on Route 9 just north of Marist College ; the Harlem Valley Rail Trail, currently an 10 mile paved trail in the northeastern part of the county; Dutchess Rail Trail, which has two sections of the trail now open; the first section runs approximately 8 miles of uninterrupted paved roadway, starting at the old Hopewell Depot in East Fishkill to Old Manchester Road in the Town of Poughkeepsie, and the second section, a 2.4 mile stretch from Overocker Road in the Town of Poughkeepsie to the Morgan Lake trailhead in the City of Poughkeepsie. Dutchess Stadium built in 1994, is home of the Hudson Valley Renegades as well as many other community events. A wide variety of activities are conducted at these facilities: swimming, boating, picnicking, hiking, camping, miniature golf, pavilion, playgrounds, and ball fields. Additional programs/activities include the operation of an educational nature center and nature trails, and special seasonal programs.
Significant capital improvements in the parks continue to be made to enhance the enjoyability and accessibility of the facilities provided, while recently expanding the park facilities.
The first section of the Harlem Valley Rail Trail was opened in 1996 when the 4.5-mile trail segment from Amenia to Coleman Station Road was constructed and opened to the general public. The second 3.5-mile section, from Coleman Station Road to Millerton, was opened in 2000. The third 2.5-mile section of the trail, from Amenia to the Wassaic Train station, was opened in 2005. A $2 million dollar federal grant was obtained to facilitate construction of the trail from Millerton north in to Columbia County. Plans for this extension are under review from NYS DEC.
The Dutchess Rail Trail’s first section, a 1.7 mile span from Lake Walton Road to Route 376 was opened in 2007 in the Town of East Fishkill. The second phase of the trail opened to the public in 2009. This 2.4 mile stretch starts at the Morgan Lake Trailhead in the City of Poughkeepsie and ends at Overocker Road in the Town of Poughkeepsie. In 2011, the third phase of the trail was completed creating an 8 mile uninterrupted run from the old Hopewell Depot in East Fishkill north to Old Manchester Road in LaGrange.
The county has an agreement with New York State to transition state-owned property at the former Hudson River Psychiatric Center into a riverfront county/state park located in the Town of Poughkeepsie just north of Marist College. Quiet Cove Riverfront Park features non-motorized boat launching, barbeque grills, picnic and fishing areas, public restrooms, a waterfront deck with Adirondack chairs and upland parking. This seasonal Park (Open from April to October) re-opened to the public after extensive renovations in October of 2010. Future plans include a revamped boat ramp and deep-water bulkhead.
Bowdoin Park, a 301 acre park overlooking the Hudson River saw the construction of a new pavilion in the summer of 2009, located on the top of the hill overlooking the majestic Hudson River. This pavilion offers kitchen facilities and restrooms, is Air Conditioned/Heated and is available for rent from April to November. Pavilions can be reserved through the online reservation system. Several new playground structures have been added to the park this year and a totally new water feature spray park will be unveiled on Memorial Day, 2013. The Maple Knoll Lodge offers overnight accommodations that sleeps 24 with a full kitchen and deck that overlooks the Hudson River. The Community Center Auditorium holds up to 160 people and has new kitchen facilities added in 2012 to accommodate parties, weddings and other special events.
Lastly, Wilcox Park has a swimming lake that is open from Memorial Day to Labor Day. There is also a fishing lake, 27 site campgrounds, 2 new playgrounds, and in the summer of 2013 a basketball court and volleyball court. There is an extensive hiking trail system throughout the 615 acre park. This park has 4 pavilions that can be reserved through the online reservation system. Pavilion C is currently the largest pavilion in Wilcox Park, complete with kitchen facilities and restrooms and a great view of the lake from its location at the top of the hill. Admission is charged to the public when the swimming lake is open.
Business Hours: 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.