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Delano Park, Decatur

#6 of 15 in Things to do in Decatur
Park · Hidden Gem · Nature / Park
The Delano Park, operated by the Decatur Parks and Recreation Board, is the oldest park in the city of Decatur, Alabama.

It was created in 1887, as part of a master plan to "re-invent" the City of Decatur, then New Decatur. The city created the "Decatur Land Improvement and Furnace Company" for this specific purpose. The company employed a landscape architect by the name of Nathan Franklin Barrett to design a whole new city that had been ravaged by a yellow fever epidemic and the Civil War. The park was designed to be the focal point of the entire plan.

The park, named after President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, was dedicated in the 1930s by Roosevelt himself and later named in his honor as part of a newspaper contest, which sought to commemorate his vision for municipal parks across America. The land was donated to the city of Albany as part of the New Deal, which included a large plan to develop the poverty-ridden city.

The park remained mostly a solitary attraction on the fringe of downtown as the only large park in town during that era. This changed in the mid-1950s when the new Decatur High School constructed a new school building to replace an overcrowding "Riverside" High School building.

The far eastern end once consisted of a swimming pool called the "Blue Haven". This pool has since been filled in, and the Decatur High marching band now uses a practice field that was created over the former swimming area.

The middle portion of the park contains a children's playground, the new "Splash Pad", and a ditch with a concrete bridge donated to the park. The bridge was moved in the 1930s from Ferry Street to accentuate the beauty of the park and has been a favorite location for young and old alike ever since.
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Delano Park reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
37 reviews
  • Lots of room and good activities for kids (playground and splash park) while giving adults without children plenty of space away from all the stimulation of the kids.  more »
  • This park is breathtaking! Your options are endless whether you're going to walk the dog, play tennis, bring the kids to enjoy the playground or splash pad, or just meander through the lush gardens.....  more »
  • Absolutely beautiful gardens! Nice walk/running trail. Play area for the kiddos and beautiful artwork throughout the property. Definitely recommend!
  • Beautiful place to go, great for kids to play. Has a great tennis court as well. A beautiful gazebo. I love coming here.

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