Outdoor Recreation

Explore the Outdoors!

Ideally situated on the Hampton Roads peninsula, James City County offers access to the Chickahominy and James Rivers, home to the John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail; the Colonial Parkway and the Historic Triangle; and lies along the Virginia Capital Trail. In addition to these great opportunities, James City County Parks offer a variety of amenities and programs for you to explore our area!

Brickyard Landing
Check out what we’re offering this season or find a facility or park that meets your outdoor adventure needs. Have you heard about the technical terrain for mountain biking? Freedom Park is home to some fantastic Eastern Virginia Mountain Bike Association trails as well as Go Ape, a treetop adventure course. 

Make sure you are enjoying the outdoors safely! Before heading out, take a look at these Outdoor Safety Tips.

We would love to hear from you about offerings you would like to see in Outdoor Recreation.

  1. Classes
  2. Camps
  3. Special Events
  4. Trips

Spring Classes - Registration Now Open

To register for any Parks and Recreation programs, click here.

Archery (Ages 9+)

These courses are designed for beginner to intermediate ability.  Learn the safe use and handing of a recurve bow in addition to proper range procedures while learning balance, focus and technique.

  • Saturdays, April 6-May 4: Archery 101
  • Saturdays, April 6-May 4: Archery for Adults
  • Tuesdays, April 9-30: Archery for Adults

Spring Programs - Free!

Learn & Grow Series - Ages 16+ (April 27)

Providing habitat and food sources for birds throughout the year is beneficial to our feathered friends. Melinda Cousins of the Backyard Birder will share info and tips to enjoy a healthy bird population all year long right in your own backyard! For details/registration: bit.ly/growapr19.

  • April 27: Feathered Friends in the Backyard all Year Long
  • May 18: "Weed" is not necessarily a Four-Letter Word
  • June 15: Bay-Friendly Gardening

Forest Explorer Fridays - All Ages

Join us the third Friday of each month to explore the plants and animals of Freedom Park! Youth ages 12 and younger must be accompanied by an adult. Program runs from 6-7:30 p.m., weather permitting.

  • April 19: Decomposers
  • May 17: Animal Rescue
  • June 21: Birds
  • July 19: Butterflies
  • Aug. 16: Reptiles

Stargazing with NASA - Ages 13+

Come Stargaze with NASA Skywatcher Astronomy Club! The NASA Skywatcher Astronomy Club will have an observing session to share their knowledge, experience and love of astronomy. Program runs 8-11 p.m. at Upper County Park, weather permitting.

  • June 8
  • Aug. 10