Local scene: Discovering Greynolds Park

This 249-acre park is located on the site of the old Ojus Rock quarry and is named after the owner A. O. Greynolds who donated most of the land making the park possible. This surprisingly large park can be found on West Dixie Highway and 180th St just south of Aventura in North Miami. Full of hammock and mangrove trees, the park is a natural preserve.

In early days, Tequesta Indians used this land and the river for transportation and the site was even once a trading post for Seminole Indians that traded with early Miami Dade settlers.

Greynolds Park was officially opened in 1936 and has been enhanced over the years with boathouses, picnic shelters, and the golf course. It was named a historic site in 1983.

The park offers access to the Oleta River with canoe rides, and kayak launches. Guided historic nature walks are also provided and there are even some organized evening activities such as a campfire program and a night hike. There are bike trails, lots of picnic tables and BBQ pits for use, including some big shelters for organizing larger events. The park even has it’s own golf course (book your Tee Time online).

One of the most unique features of the park is what looks like an old stone fort, and is called the Observation Mound. This structure, 46 feet above sea level was at one time the highest point of Miami Dade County. Hard to imagine with the condo farms which you find here today.  It is not a natural structure but rather built up from materials and tools leftover from the original rock quarry, which used to occupy this site. You can walk up the spiraling stairways to an observation mound.

Observation Mound

The park hosts a Bluegrass Music Festival the first Sunday of every month and fans are encouraged to bring their instruments to join in a jam. Check with the South Florida Bluegrass Association for details. During the 60’s, local hippies came to the park to join “Love-ins” with bands such as The Grateful Dead. The park continues to honor this tradition with an annual Love-in event held in May.

The park is open Sunrise to Sunset and reservations for the boathouse and shelters can be made by telephone. See the official site for contact details and most recent pricing information: Here

There are many interesting aspects to the park that merit a visit; we came out here to BBQ as it was close to home and a new local site to explore. From a scenic viewpoint we prefer the Oleta State Park, located just a little further southwest as it offers open views onto Biscayne Bay and more of a beach setting.

Red-Headed Woodpecker

That said, we did appreciate what the park had to offer and just the fact that there is such a huge park in the mostly urban setting of condo and townhouses is a nice escape into nature. We saw some red-headed woodpeckers just over our BBQ area. Much of the circle road was closed, likely due to hurricane damage on our visit, so we will have to go back to explore further at another date. Perhaps for one of their music festivals or the love-in… Hmm!

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