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Posts Tagged ‘Spartanburg Parks’

You Can Fish, Boat, Play on a Unique Playground or Simply Relax at Anchor Park on Lake Bowen

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Are you looking for a place on the water where the whole family can enjoy fishing, water sports, and a fenced-in playground? Whether it’s spending time on the lake or enjoying a picnic in the shade we’ve found the perfect spot. We’ve included all the info you’ll need for spending the day on Lake Bowen and at Anchor Park.

For more ideas on outdoor activities this summer check out our list of Things to do Outside in Spartanburg, SC.

About Lake Bowen

Lake Bowen covers over 1,500 acres and contains approximately 33 miles of shoreline. Anchor Park on the lake includes picnic pavilions, fishing, a playground, two boat ramps, and the Lake Bowen Warden’s Office.

Anchor Park at Lake Bowen

Water sports on Lake Bowen

If you plan on use of any type of watercraft, be sure to call the Warden’s Office in advance at 864.592.2240. There are office hours posted, however, the office isn’t always open during those hours. If the warden goes out on the lake, the office will be closed. This is the only way to obtain a permit to be on the lake, so call ahead.

Boat permits are issued through the Spartanburg Water system that owns the lake. Rates start at $25 seasonally for non-motorized boats. Life jackets are required and a loaner system has been set up at the boat dock if you forgot one.

If boating isn’t what you had in mind, the park has tons of shade trees and a modern playground. The play area is divided into two age-appropriate sections and is completely fenced-in with picnic shelters and a green space.

Fishing on Lake Bowen

While there’s no fishing pier structure, there is plenty of shoreline to fish from. Just make sure you have your fishing license handy. Obtain one from the Warden’s Office or online at SCDNR.com. We didn’t have a chance to do any fishing this time, but I hope to do so in the near future.

This park really is lovely. There are plenty of benches and even a few that swing. The open green space is perfect if you want to bring along a cornhole set for some friendly family competition. We brought our hammock, but never had a chance to set it up. Pesky summer storms! There are plenty of trees, I just didn’t notice if any were close enough together.

If you pack a picnic, you really could spend the whole day relaxing here. There’s even an ice machine in the park to help make sure those sodas stay frosty!

I hope you’ll plan a day on Lake Bowen soon. I know we are looking forward to going back.

Lake Bowen Spartanburg County Parks

Visit Lake Bowen

8515 Highway 9, Inman
864.592.2240
Visit the Lake Bowen website.

Daily park hours: 6 am – midnight- Restrooms close at 7 pm and open at 6:30 am
Office hours for purchasing land permits: Monday – Friday 2 – 4 pm
Office hours for purchasing boating permits: Sunday – Friday 12 – 4 pm, Saturday 8:30 am – 5 pm

What’s your family’s favorite thing to do at Lake Bowen?

RELATED: Renting a Boat on Lake Cooley Needs to be on Your Summer Bucket List

Cool Off in the Free Splash Pad at Downtown Memorial Airport Park: Spartanburg, SC

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Downtown Spartanburg has a fantastic park, located at the Downtown Memorial Airport with two playgrounds, paved paths for bike riding, picnic shelters, and a free splash pad. The Spartanburg Airport Park is perfect for the summer heat with that splash pad, plus year-round fun on the playgrounds. Here’s everything you need to know about the Downtown Memorial Airport Park.

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Lake Cooley Needs to Be on Your Summer Bucket List

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Would your family like to spend time by a beautiful lake in Spartanburg but you’re not sure where to go? Whether you like fishing, kayaking, or just somewhere peaceful and relaxing, we’ve got just the place for your family! 

We have everything you need to know about Lake Cooley, including how to obtain a fishing license, how to rent a kayak, and more.

About Lake Cooley In Wellford, SC

Lake Cooley is a 330-gallon watershed located in Wellford, just about 10 minutes north of Wade Hampton road. This hidden gem is home to the Lake Cooley Outdoor Education Center. The center is a two-story building that includes a classroom filled with live & mounted wildlife. Please contact the Outdoor Education Center to make an appointment to visit. The ground level of the center houses the 40-person rental facility.

Lake Cooley

Water sports on Lake Cooley

Several different styles of kayaks and paddleboards are available for rent on a first come first serve basis. The rates start at ten dollars for a two-hour rental and are currently available Thursday through Sunday. Swimming at the lake is prohibited to the public, so keep that in mind when the temptation to go for a swim arises.

  • May 28th and 29th
    8 am – 8 pm
  • May 31st – September 6th (closed July 4th)
    Thursdays and Fridays: 12 pm – 8 pm
    Saturdays and Sundays: 8 am – 8 pm

The current rates and hours can be viewed on the Lake Cooley website.

Things you will need to bring include a driver’s license, a credit/debit card or exact change, and a life vest for children under 10 (not provided). Lifevests for children and adults over 10 are available.

If you are fortunate enough to have your own kayak, then you’ll need to purchase a permit decal from SJWD in person Monday through Friday between 8:30 am and 4:30 pm. The office is located on Highway 29 in Wellford. The permit is $40 for Spartanburg County residents, is good through December of the year purchased, and is only valid for Lake Cooley.

Spending Time With Your Family on Lake Cooley

Our family recently spent a day on the lake. My son received a kid-size kayak for Christmas, and this was his kayak’s maiden voyage. He used his kayak, and we rented a tandem kayak. If you are bringing children under 10 and plan to use a rental, you will need to provide a life vest for them to wear. They are required the entire time you are on the lake. Also, be sure to allow plenty of time to check-in, fill out waivers, and get fitted for life vests.

Our day on the lake was memorable. Our son took to his kayak like it was second nature and the toddler was surprisingly well behaved. Towards the end of the rental time, she was getting ready to jump off the kayak and go swimming (which is prohibited, even though you might see it happening).

I like this lake because it seems like the boat traffic is minimal. Most of the traffic was kayaks or paddleboards. We did see a few pontoon boats, but they were anchored. We were already planning our next trip to the lake before we had left.

Lake Cooley kayaks picnic shelters Spartanburg

Fishing on Lake Cooley

If you are a fishing enthusiast, you’re in luck. There are two fishing piers at the lake and they also offer specialty fishing kayak rentals. Small fish are plentiful around the shore and make the perfect bait for the bass fish that lurk deeper in the lake, just be sure to bring a net. I can’t say I’ve caught one, but the bass have taunted me while swimming past my hook.

A freshwater fishing license can be obtained from the SCDNR website and is only $10 for an annual license. Children do not need a license if with a licensed adult.

Events at Lake Cooley

The Discover Your Watershed event, hosted by USC Upstate in May, is a great way to meet the environmental and conservation groups in the community. There are activities for kids, free giveaways, and the opportunity for everyone to receive a free boating permit from SJWD.

Picnic Shelters and Grills at Lake Cooley

If you pack a picnic or would like to grill at the lake – there are two picnic shelters available for rent as well as two picnic tables available first come first serve. There are also restrooms available. Not to worry if you forget snacks or refreshments! The rental area has drinks, bagged snacks, and frozen treats for just $1 each.

The Playground at Lake Cooley

As if we haven’t already given you enough reason to head to Lake Cooley, the playground is all the more reason. This is a great, small playground with lake views and right next to a huge picnic shelter.

This lake has everything you could want, and it’s conveniently close. I hope that you decide to check Lake Cooley out this summer. I promise you won’t regret a day on the lake with your family.

Lake Cooley
100 Cooley Dock Road, Inman | 864.949.1002

Pokémon Go Community Day

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Have you ever played Pokemon Go? Did you know that Spartanburg’s Cleveland Park is hosting a monthly Pokémon Go Community day, where players can team up? Regardless of whether you are a seasoned trainer, or you have no idea what a Squirtle is – this event is something the entire family can enjoy. The only thing you’ll need is your smartphone, or tablet.

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