Nature Center


Lowell Park Gate:

Foot traffic is allowed from 6:00 AM till 11:00 PM.
Park gates will be open from 6:00 AM till 9:00 PM.
Non-motorized use of Lowell Park 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.

  • Know Before You Go
  • Stick to Trails
  • Trash Your Trash
  • Pick Up Pet Poop
  • Leave it as You Find it
  • Be Careful with Fire
  • Keep Wildlife Wild
  • Share Your Trails and Manage Your Pet

Personal Safety and Crime Prevention on the Trails:

  • Take what you need: carry personal ID and medication if needed
  • Leave valuables at home: if you need to leave valuables in your car, hide them before you arrive. Don’t be a victim of “Crash and Grab”
  • Use all your senses: listen for suspicious noises. Don’t wear headphones, they impair your ability to hear someone approaching you from behind.
  •  Be easy to find: use marked, authorized trails only.
  •  Have someone waiting: always let someone else know where you will be going and when you will return.
  •  Report anything suspicious to the authorities
Snow Shoes are available at the Nature Center to use at no cost!
We have 2 pairs for children and 4 pairs for adults.
They are available on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Stop in when the Nature Center is open to sign them out and enjoy the park!

Ruth Edwards Nature Center/Museum

Your visit at the Ruth Edwards Nature Center. Stop in for the latest park information and recreational opportunities.

June Hours at the Nature Center:

Monday 11 AM – 2 PM

Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 1 – 4 PM


Events at the Ruth Edwards Nature Center for June

 Friday June 7 at 1 PM                                                               Nature Fun for the Little Ones (ages 3-5) will be taking a hike in the woods to explore trees and fallen logs.

Friday, June 7 at 7 PM                                                                         Rivers, Reefs and Glaciers: A Brief History of the Last 500 Million Years at Lowell Park.   Campfire with geology talk by  Steve Simpson.  S’mores after the program.

Saturday, June 8 from  1:30 – 3:30 PM                                                         Take a hike and record your experiences in words and drawings! Bring a blanket to sit on, bug spray, sun screen and comfortable hiking clothes.  All supplies will be provided. For ages 5th grade and up.  Class limit of 5.  Please register in advance.

Tuesday, June 11 at 6 PM                                                                                 Join us for a blue-bird hike.  Meet at the Meadows parking lot.  Bring binoculars if you would like.   Wear comfortable shoes and clothing for hiking.

Wednesday, June 12 from 4 – 8 PM                                                              Stop by the Dixon City Market along the Riverfront to learn more about our events .  Kid friendly activities will be on hand!

Wednesday, June 19th from 9 AM – 3PM                                 Spend a day in Lowell Park exploring nature through scavenger hunts, nature journaling and more.  Bring a sack lunch.  Cost is $15 per child with a limit of 10 students.   Registration forms available at the Nature Center and the Park Office.  Designed for kids 8-12 years old.   

Saturday, June 22 at 1:30 PM                                                       Join Hoo Haven at the nature center to learn about birds of Prey and reptiles.  Hoo Haven will be bring live birds and reptiles.

Tuesday, June 25th at 7 PM                                                                              Trivia Night at Ruth Edwards Nature Center.  Please register teams of 2-4 people in advance.  All ages welcome. Test your knowledge of nature, the outdoors and Lowell Park.   Food and drinks will be provided.

Saturday, June 29th 1:30 – 2:30 PM                                                            Learn about monarch butterflies, their life cycle, and the importance of pollinators in our ecosystem.  Participants will paint a butterfly on a canvas shape.  Wear your “painting clothing”.   Ages 4th grade and up. Register in advance.


  June through August.  Thursday from 6:30 – 7:30 PM and  Saturdays from 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM.  No class on August 3.  The group will meet along the riverfront in Lowell Park.  Wear comfortable stretchy clothing.  Bring your yoga mat or a beach towel.  ALL ages, gender and experience levels are WELCOME.

 Call the Nature Center at 815-288-5209 or the Park Office at 815-284-3306 to register for the programs.

Click here for June RENC events 2019


Environmental Education:

Environmental education classes are available for students of all ages. Classes are designed to provide students with structured, hand-on learning that promotes a better understanding of the natural world and strengthens positive environmental values.

We invite you to schedule a whole or half day visit. Please provide a minimum 3 weeks advance notice prior to the date you wish to reserve. Our naturalist will work with your to choose the activities and curriculum that best fit your needs. Call the Nature Center at 815-288-5209

Yowl loves having visitors.
Stop in and say hi!

Park Rules

Alcohol is prohibited in the park


  • Motorized vehicles are restricted to the roadways and parking lots only.  Parking on the grass is prohibited.
  • Following a storm, the gates may remain closed until staff has safely cleared parking areas and roadways.
  • Bicycles are welcome on the roadways at Lowell Park.  Bicyclist are requested to obey one-way road restrictions. 
  • NO bicycle traffic is allowed on trails.  Snowmobiles are prohibited on park roads and trails, unless posted

There are no camping facilities in the park. Camping is prohibited at Lowell Park

Dogs are welcome at Lowell Park as long as they are leashed and in control of the handler.  Dogs are not allowed in the playground areas for health reasons.  Please practice Leave No Trace Principles by cleaning up after your pet, i.e. removing all waste from the site and taking it with you.

Fires are restricted to grills or fire rings.  Please make certain your fire is out cold before departing.  Charcoal grills are provided at each of the picnic shelters

Smoking is prohibited in all Dixon Park District parks

Speed Limit
The speed limit is 15 mph, unless posted.

There are no garbage cans at Lowell Park.  Please plan ahead for the removal of any waste by carrying out what you carry in.

Call 815-284-3306 for emergencies after hours

Contact Us

Our Mission Statement

It is the mission of the Dixon Park District to maintain a high standard of leadership and competency in the promotion of sound environmental practices and lifestyles, and to maintain a creative and efficient park and recreation system.

Park Board Meetings

  • The public is encouraged to attend.
  • Meetings are the third Wednesday of each month at 6 pm at the park office.
  • The December Board meeting is the second Wednesday of the month.
  • Agendas, Minutes, Audits and Financials posted are on this website

Partner In Health

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