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Cub Creek Park: A Green Gem in the Heart of Wilkesboro

September 23, 2021 at 07:10 AM

Cub Creek Park: A Green Gem in the Heart of Wilkesboro


Walk along the trails and Cub Creek Park and you’ll be greeted with a variety of happy sounds. Kids’ laughter from the playground, the satisfying knock of a baseball meeting a bat on the ball field, shoes squeaking on tennis courts as someone hurries to get to the bright neon ball, neighbors talking as they harvest tomatoes from the plots in the community garden -- there’s never a time when Cub Creek Park isn’t filled with some sort of activity.


Today the park encompasses around 150 acres of land in the city of Wilkesboro, but it all started with a dream of the local garden club and a few acres of land acquired by grant money. In the late 1960s that group, led by Lilly Brewer, saw the value a park could bring to their local community. “Whether it’s businesses looking to relocate or people wanting a good place to raise a family, having a nice park helps improve a town’s status,” says Ken Noland, Wilkesboro town manager. “Parks help improve the overall attractiveness with the green space and show a commitment to healthy lifestyles.”


What started out as a playground and a few tennis courts grew over time to the Cub Creek Park facilities people of Wilkesboro are familiar with today.


Kids in Parks

Of course, parks are often associated with kids, and the playground at Cub Creek Park is just one of the many features that attract kids and families to the area.

Young Man fishing at the wilkesboro Troutacular

  • Kids in the Park Trail: The TRACK trail begins at the Bridge Street entrance near the children’s playgrounds and loops around ball fields and along the creek for a fun hike that’s a little over a mile. Kids can pick up brochures to help look for animals and plants along the way, part of the TRACK Adventure.
  • Troutacular: Twice a year, Cub Creek, which gives the park its name, is the site of a kids’ fishing event that helps introduce kids to the fun of outdoor sports. In addition to kids’ fishing days, The Town of Wilkesboro and Cub Creek have been named a North Carolina Mountain Heritage Trout City, a documentation promotes public access to trout streams with a 3-day fishing license.


Activities for All Ages

It’s not just the young ones who enjoy Cub Creek Park. Any given day you will see people of all ages participating in outdoor activities in Wilkesboro’s expansive green space.

Pickleball Courts in Wilkesboro

  • Pickleball: This summer, 6 new courts dedicated to pickleball were constructed for the burgeoning pickleball players in our community. Join up with a standing group that plays every day except Sunday at 8 a.m. or in the evenings. For beginners there’s a free clinic on Wednesdays from 8-10 a.m.
  • Community Garden: Healthy lifestyles aren’t just about exercise but also eating right. Cub Creek Park includes a community garden of 50 plots, for people from Wilkesboro to have a place to grow vegetables, herbs, flowers or whatever they want. The local Master Gardeners and Cooperative Extension provide assistance as needed.
  • Multi-use Trails: The Brushy Mountain Cyclists Club worked with the park to create a mountain bike trail for the public at the park. The beginner-friendly, half mile loop includes some fun features for bikers of any level. It’s also great for running and hiking.
  • Dog Park: Make sure your furry family members get exercise and socialization too at Hidden Oaks dog park, an acre of land fenced in so dogs can run off-leash.


Growing Toward the Future

One thing that has helped Cub Creek Park maintain its immaculate appearance and continue to grow to meet the needs of the community is the close ties and strong support of the Town of Wilkesboro. Recent projects have included stream restoration work along Cub Creek. “Before this work, if we had a big rain it could cause damage to the ball fields and walking track,” Noland said. “Now we’ve got it designed through the flood plains so when water does break out of the creek beds it slowly seeps back to the creek. It’s a more sustainable solution.”


The park also works with other government agencies in Wilkesboro to grow its reach. Together with the Wilkesboro Public Library the park has sponsored story walks for kids, and plans are in the works for connecting Cub Creek Park’s walking trails to the Yadkin River Greenway.


“Our goal is to provide opportunities for a healthy lifestyle, which is not only good for residents of Wilkesboro but also helps attract tourism and new business,” Noland says. “Cub Creek Park is really an amazing asset for a town this size and something we can all be proud of.”