Thanks to comfortable temperatures and ample options for outdoor adventures, U.S. News & World Report recently named Asheville one of the top destinations in the world to visit in spring. Coming as no surprise to those who live here, April is a great time to explore the city. The outdoor experts at Asheville Parks & Recreation (APR) play host to plenty of opportunities to explore, connect, and discover this month.
Hiking and Walking
- Enjoy fresh air while reading pages of Me & Mama by award-winning author and illustrator Cozi A. Cabrera along a pop-up StoryWalk® at Linwood Crump Shiloh Community Center from April 25-May 23 (rescheduled from April 1-30).
- Explore the city’s natural beauty and connect with new people on Saturday mornings from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. with Greenway Walking Club. Discover Wilma Dykeman Greenway on April 8, French Broad River Greenway from Carrier Park to Hominy Creek River Park on April 15, and French Broad River Greenway from French Broad River Park to Craven Street on April 22.
- Treks Hiking Club for adults 50+ takes a low-impact, leisurely-paced hike on Bearwallow Mountain on April 18 from 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. $5 registration by April 14 is required and transportation from Recreation Park is provided.
Kids and Family
- Toddlers take over the playground at Stephens-Lee Community Center on April 11 from 10-11 a.m. during Up, Down, and All Around. $5 advance registration required and includes fun supervised activities to exercise the mind and encourage creativity.
- Youth Archery for Beginners takes place Wednesdays from 5:30-6:30 p.m. at Tempie Avery Montford Community Center starting on April 12. The four-week course for 9-12 year-olds costs $25 and advance registration is required.
- April’s APR Family Outdoor Night is Let’s Try Fishing! Fishing poles and bait are provided at this introductory program on April 13 from 5-6:30 p.m. at the pond behind Azalea Dog Park.
- From rescue vehicles and public works equipment to utility tractors and construction machines, community members have an excellent opportunity to “pull back the curtain” and climb on, touch, and learn about the equipment required to maintain our cities and towns, foodways, and public safety systems when Truck City AVL pulls into Asheville Outlets on April 15 from 1-4 p.m.
- Explore the world of plants through art, games, and stories at Stephens-Lee Community Center’s Little Sprouts from 10-11 a.m. on April 18. Registration is free, but required.
- Hit Richmond Hill Park’s beginner bike skills course and make new friends on April 21 from 10-11:30 a.m. at Little Shredders, a social meet up for riders ages 3-6. Shredders should have their own bike and helmet, but a limited number can be provided with advance notice.
Games, Sports, and Art
- Celebrate older athletes and artists throughout April and May during Asheville-Buncombe Senior Games and SilverArts with events throughout the city. All events are free for spectators.
- Linwood Crump Shiloh Community Center hosts Drive In Bingo on April 20 from 2-4 p.m. Winners receive prizes, while everyone receives fun and refreshments.
- On April 21, Art Park features a twist on painting in Carrier Park from 2-4 p.m. Instructors from Grove Street Community Center provide the supplies and nature provides the inspiration.
- Therapeutic Recreation Baseball League plays from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. (teams play for one hour each) on Saturdays from April 22-June 3. Offered in partnership with Asheville Tourists and T.C. Roberson High School Rams, this noncompetitive league for youth ages 6-17 and adults 18 and older with disabilities focuses on the basics of the game with an emphasis on fun. $40 advance registration required. City residents receive a $5 discount.
- APR’s therapeutic and outdoor recreation programs invite new and seasoned anglers ages 6 and older to Adaptive Outdoor Adventures: Fishing Fun on April 27 from 5-6:30 p.m. at the pond behind Azalea Dog Park. Fishing poles and bait are provided and adaptive equipment will be available.
- Join Coach Eddie on Burton Street Community Center’s outdoor courts for Basketball Skills for Teens on April 28 from 6-8 p.m.
Gardening and Beautification
- Stephens-Lee Community Center, East End Valley Street Neighborhood Association, and Bountiful Cities host Community Garden Day on April 15 (rescheduled from April 1) from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. with educational presentations, gardening resources, and hands-on activities.
- Dr. George Washington Carver Edible Park’s monthly Work & Learn Day takes place April 21 from 3:30-5:30 p.m. Volunteers meet on the north end of Stephens-Lee Community Center’s parking lot near the entrance to the park.
- Burton Street Community Center invites residents from within and without the Burton Street neighborhood to Earth Day Community Cleanup on April 22 from 12-2 p.m.
- Dr. Wesley Grant Sr. Southside Community Center hosts its monthly Southside Community Cleanup on April 29 from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. followed by refreshments and relaxation at the center.
- Burton Street and Stephens-Lee community centers maintain seed libraries. Community members can pick up free seed packets for flowers, vegetables, and fruits during regular center hours.
Looking ahead, adult sand volleyball league registration begins April 17, the Tiny Tykes Day festival takes over Martin Luther King Jr. Park on May 7, and Movies in the Park returns to Pack Square Park on May 10. Community members can also choose their own adventures at more than 65 public parks in the city. A full list of APR programs and activities can be viewed online.
Asheville Parks & Recreation
Established in 1956, Asheville Parks & Recreation manages a unique collection of more than 65 public parks, playgrounds, and open spaces throughout the city in a system that also includes full-complex recreation centers, swimming pools, Riverside Cemetery, sports fields and courts, and community centers that offer a variety of wellness-, education-, and culture-related programs for Ashevillians of all ages. With 10 miles of paved greenways and numerous natural surface trails, its complete portfolio acts as the foundation of a vibrant hub for the people of Asheville to connect with their neighbors and explore the natural beauty of a livable and walkable city.
Driven by the promise that Asheville is a better and safer place when everyone from infants to retirees has the opportunity to be supported, healthy, and successful, Asheville Parks & Recreation was the first nationally-accredited municipal recreation department in the United States. For the latest updates, follow the department on Facebook @aprca and Instagram @ashevilleparksandrecreation or visit www.ashevillenc.gov/parks.