In my quest for spring and getting outside, plus I thought this would be a nice ongoing page, here are some favorite natural getaways in Saint Charles.

  • Fox River Bluff West Dog Park along the river – Across from North high school in between 31 and the river.  This used to be one big loop, but is now cut in half by the new Red Gate bridge.  You can do either small loop – to the North, there are a couple of nice spots along the river either for letting your dog or your children investigate.  Also, not bad Winnie the Pooh ‘thinking spots’.  I remember one day someone was playing a guitar sitting on a tree stump, and it was so lovely. Plus you can walk across the new pedestrian bridge …
  • Anderson Wood Forest Preserve – Cross the new pedestrian bridge at Red Gate, and you can jump on the bike trail going south into downtown Saint Charles.  (start at 25 and Red Gate Rd).  This is a beautiful bike ride along the river watching boats and kayaks that can end you up right at Pottawatomie Park and downtown Saint Charles.
  • Healing Gardens at Stone Hill Gardens off of Dean Street.  This is the private residence of Deborah Marqui.  After recovering from cancer in the 90’s, Debbie felt called to offer a peaceful retreat helping people to connect with God through nature.  There are beautiful various areas such as a children’s garden complete with a tree stump table and small house as well as a memorial garden, moon garden, etc.  In addition to various retreats and meetings that she holds, the gardens are also open to the public from 11AM to 4PM the second Sunday of every month from April through October.
  • Delnor Park – I just found this and can’t wait to see it in the spring.  If you park off of 25 – north of downtown Saint Charles and just north of State Ave, you can have a short walk around a pond and passing a couple of stately oak trees back to a playground.  Take the return walk through the path in the woods.

So, just getting started!  Add your favorite get-aways or pm me.  And look for upcoming Geneva, Batavia, South Elgin Favorite Places. 

Side note, the oak trees at Delnor Park made me think of, from Kahlil Gibran The Prophet of Marriage:

Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.

For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.

And stand together yet not too near together:

For the pillars of the temple stand apart,

And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.

* Photo of the Moon Garden at Healing Gardens.