Towne Park is a bit of a hidden gem in historic downtown Algonquin. This 12-acre park is wedged just southeast of where the Hwy 31 bypass and Hwy 62/W Algonguin Rd cross. You may have even seen it from the road, or hardly noticed it at all. While there is plenty of parking at the park, it is also just a short walk from downtown amenities, Cornish Park, Riverfront Park, and the Fox River.
Maintained by the Village of Algonquin, currently, this park features wide open spaces, a large wooden “castle-styled” playground called Angel Towne, picnic tables, a large covered picnic shelter that is available for rent, a baseball diamond, park benches, public restrooms, and ample parking both at the main entrance as well as off of South Main Street, behind the Historic Village Hall.
It is a lovely space entered from the parking area by crossing over a walk bridge that spans over the babbling Crystal Creek. If there is any complaint that could be made, it’s the noise from the busy roads that run along the perimeter of the park.
Address: 100 Jefferson St, Algonquin, IL 60102
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Prairie Trail South
Towne Park also serves as the key start/stop point in Algonquin for accessing the Prairie Trail. The Prairie Trail consists of over 25 miles of paved and unpaved trails that run the length of McHenry County, primarily used for bicycling and walking. The portion that runs through Algonquin consists of the 17-mile Prairie Trail South section, which starts in the Village of McHenry (where it connects to the Prairie Trail North section) and runs through Crystal Lake and through Algonquin until the southern border of Algonquin, where it meets the Fox River Trail.
The portion of the Prairie Trail that runs through Algonquin is also the only part of the trail which not only runs along but crosses over the Fox River. The Prairie Trail is managed by the McHenry County Conservation District.
Mineral Spring Park
An interesting bit of history can still be found at the park, along the path that runs next to Crystal Creek. Just behind the Victorian Rose Garden Bed & Breakfast is the historical marker and remains of the old mineral springs. The mineral spring dates back to the founding days of Algonquin. The spring was fed by artesian wells in the hills that attracted residents and summer vacationers who believed the water held medicinal qualities. Towne Park was originally named Mineral Spring Park before residents approved the Village’s purchase of the property in 1915, which led to the adoption of the name Towne Park.
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Towne Park Master Plan for the Future
Like many park facilities that have been in place for some time, Towne Park is reaching a point where it is needing to be revitalized again. Towne Park Master Plan is just one of several improvements within the Village’s Parks and Recreation Master Plan that has identified key locations for improvements. Coinciding with the Old Town Algonquin revitalization project, this is a key part of fostering further improvements and quality of life in Algonquin.