by Stephen Hartsfield
Henry Farm Park in Jacksonville, Alabama is located at 351 Henry Road Southwest, behind the 2025th Transportation National Guard Armory and the Jacksonville State University nursing school facility located in the former Jacksonville Hospital. The park is maintained by the Jacksonville Parks and Recreation Department and offers a number of attractions for residents in the community seeking outdoor recreation.
Mountain biking has increased in popularity in Calhoun County in recent years, and there are several high quality and well designed courses accessible to participants in the sport. Henry Farm Park features four loop trails created with intermediate riders in mind. The Red loop trail is the longest and consists of over three miles of singletrack trail and features modest climbs and descents. The other three loop trails in the park, the Orange, Yellow, and Blue loops are all less than three miles each. The mountain bike trails in the park were awarded the 2018 Alabama Recreation and Parks Association (ARPA) Facility of the Year. The loop trails are also open to pedestrians, and bikers are expected to yield right-of-way to hikers. The Northeast Alabama Bicycle Club is a co-sponsor of the trails at Henry Farm Park. The park also contains the Kiwanis Walking Trail and multiple nature trails which are open to foot traffic only. The grounds accommodate picnics in the form of a covered pavilion, picnic tables, and playgrounds for the youngsters in the group.
As another amenity, Henry Farm Park offers The Larry Joe Barnwell softball fields for youth and adult league softball, and the Jacksonville High School baseball fields. These sporting fields are available for rent at a fee of $25.00 per field per hour during daylight hours, and at $35.00 per hour if lighting is needed for the event. Availability is contingent upon the city’s needs, and reservations can be made by contacting the Jacksonville PARD at (256) 435-8115.
The closeness of Henry Farm Park to downtown Jacksonville and Jacksonville State University makes the facility a popular destination for residents and students alike. If you are looking for a place to hike, bike, or just to spend some time outdoors, Henry Farm Park is waiting for you.