Jaycee Park and Community Center

Raleigh’s Jaycee Park is located just south of Wade Avenue, not far from Cameron Village.  I really should’ve written about it sooner as I usually visit this park at least once a month for the meeting of the Raleigh Parks, Recreation and Greenway Advisory Board (PRGAB for short. There’s also a Facebook page). The PRGAB is a citizen advisory board to the City Council on issues related to Parks and Recreation in Raleigh. Meetings are open to the public and we encourage visitors. The PRGAB meetings are held in the Jaycee Module, an octagonal building near the parking lots just off Wade Ave.

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The Jaycee Park is home to a community center that contains meeting rooms, a gym, and a weight room. It also contains a couple of lighted ball fields, some sand volleyball courts and a small ‘vintage’ playground. The community center is slated to be renovated, with work completing in June of 2012.

Featured in the photo at the top of this page is the Parks and Recreation Department’s Recreation Administration building. This mid century mod-ish building contains a large atrium filled with live plants.

I knew that the Jaycee Park is dominated by beautiful old oaks but I was pleasantly surprised to discover that there are also some wooded trails that run along a stream on the western side of the park. They connect to a bit of greenway that will take you to the Rose Garden near the Raleigh Little Theater. On the Raleigh Nature blog, John picked a waterfall in this part of the park as his favorite spot to listen to water. It’s surprisingly peaceful to be located so close to downtown and busy Wade Ave.

If you visit the park, be sure to check out the garden of daylillies that the Raleigh Hemerocallis Club maintains near the Jaycee Module. They are quite pretty during their peak season (Which, of course, isn’t in November – when I took the photos for this post!)

When I started doing research for this entry, I had a hard time finding information about the park’s history. My gut feeling is that, like the Lions Park, it probably began as a public-private partnership post WWII. The community center opened in February of 1961. If you happen to know of a good source for info about this park, please post in the comments.