Rhode Island’s Gem: Lincoln Woods State Park

In the Northeastern United States, there are a veritable plethora of parks and locations for sightseers, leaf watchers, and vacationers. People come from all over the country to experience the beauty and newness of a New England spring, the sweltering heat and fun of a New England summer, or the crisp, cool snap of a New England fall. Lincoln Woods State Park, an easy drive from Providence, Cumberland, and Pawtucket, has something to offer visitors no matter what their interests are or what time of year it is. There is also complete wheelchair access into the park, so it is accommodating to visitors of any age or mobility range. In the heart of the Blackstone Valley, Lincoln Woods is a very popular vacation spot for Rhode Islanders, with summertime activities like swimming, fishing, playing ball, horseback riding, hiking, jogging, and many others. The park is open all year round, and any fans of cross country skiing, snowshoeing, ice fishing, or a variety of other outdoor winter activities will feel right at home in Lincoln Woods State Park.

On a hot summer day, there is nothing better than piling the whole family into the car with the promise of some watery adventure to cool everyone off. Encompassing all of Olney Pond, thousands of people drop into Lincoln Woods each year to beat the heat and just enjoy the water. One of the park’s biggest draws is its swim beach, which is also a fantastic site for family picnics, summer dates, and annual family reunions. Admission to the park is free all year round, so it can be an inexpensive, yet completely unique family getaway location. During the summer season, there is always a lifeguard on duty, from 9 am to 8 pm, so parents can feel a lot better about bringing their young swimmers to the park. A map of the Lincoln Woods, complete with all the picnic sites, the boat ramp, all the hiking and biking trails, and roads leading in and out can be found here: http://www.riparks.com/pdfs/LincolnWoodsParkMap.pdf.

Swimming is far from the only thing to do on the water at Lincoln Woods State Park, however, there is also fantastic trout fishing, boating, and the newly created Eastern Mountain Sports kayaking school, who can be reached for questions or appointments at (800) 310-4504 or on their website: http://www.emskayak.com/locations_lincolnwoods_rentals.shtml. Many anglers are drawn to the park, as its Olney, Barney, and Quinsicket Ponds are stocked with trout. The fishing does not have to end when the water freezes over however, as many people brave the harsh cold and ice fish all winter long. Canoeing has also become a fairly popular activity at the park, and canoes can often be seen drifting amongst the kayaks and fishing boats out on Olney Pond. As the park spans almost 700 acres, there is plenty of room to accommodate any and all activities.

For people looking to organize events at the park, be they baseball games, company picnics, or family reunions, the park has plenty of facilities and offers rental rates that are hard to compete with. For example, the cost for a baseball little league to reserve a specified time on the specially sized Little League Field is only $25 for the entire season. A company looking to reserve one of the park’s 92 picnic sites for a retirement party or summer potluck will pay only $35 for the day.

Within Lincoln Woods State Park, there are miles upon miles of walking, hiking, and horseback riding trails that both circle the pond and meander through the beautiful forest surrounding it. There trails are as diverse as the fashion people using them in, and certain ones have been set aside specifically for equestrian or bicycle use in order to help minimize trail use conflict. On these trails, all the wonder of New England’s wildlife can be seen, and many visitors bring binoculars and identification books to aid in their bird and wildlife watching endeavors.

With all this fun available all year round, it’s no wonder that Lincoln Woods State Park, which is just outside of Providence, Rhode Island, is one of the state’s prime day trip and vacation spots.