Stroll meandering pathways and cross artisan-built stone bridges at this family-friendly park of open fields, groves of trees, and frog ponds.
A visit to Francis William Bird Park is a detour into nature in pursuit of play, no matter your age. Rolling fields lined by tree groves, a trio of ponds, and gurgling brooks comprise a lovely, organic tableau. The abundance of carefree recreation is testament to park designer John Nolen—a disciple of Frederick Law Olmsted—and his belief that a mixture of relaxation and active play should be parts of the park experience.
When you arrive here, start by exploring the more than three miles of easy walking paths crisscrossing the 89-acre park to survey its woodlands, meadows, and water features. Spend a moment contemplating the park’s origin, created and endowed in 1925 by Charles Sumner Bird, Sr., and his wife, Anna, in memory of their eldest son, Francis William Bird (1881-1918). Then, let the games begin. Four tennis courts, a basketball net, and a “tot lot” playground are all you need for a memorable afternoon of family fun. Finish up the day by rolling out a blanket for a picnic on the park’s broad lawns, and savor what Nolen called the “spiritual uplift of nature.”
FREE to all.
Open year-round, daily, sunrise to sunset. Allow a minimum of 1 hour.
Walpole, MA 02032
From the I-95/Rt. 128 Split (Canton): From I-95 South, take Exit 21. Turn right onto Coney St. Follow for 0.8 mi. (cross over Rt. 1 at traffic light). Turn left onto Pleasant St. and then right onto Polley Lane in 0.3 mile. Parking area (60 cars) is 0.1 mile on left.
Public Transportation: Take the 34E bus line, accessible from the Forest Hills Orange Line T stop or the Franklin commuter rail line at Norwood Central station. Visit mbta.com for more details.
Bike rack, benches, picnic tables, trash receptacles, public restroom (portable toilet open seasonally).
Park includes a “tot lot” with children’s play equipment, two playgrounds, two tennis courts (one painted with additional lines for pickleball), two small basketball courts, and an outdoor stage where public events are held.
Pathways at Bird Park consist of concrete, stucco pavers, compact gravel, and compact dirt but there are sections that are not wheelchair accessible. There is accessible parking and a level entrance to the Park at the Pleasant Street lot and The Union Congregational Church lot (55 Rhoades Avenue).
A group picnic area is available to rent (up to 50 people).
Free trail map distributed from bulletin board in the parking area. Please understand that supplies periodically run out.
We recommend that you take a photo of the map on your phone so you can refer to it during your visit, or download a trail map before you head out.
We hope you enjoy your visit. For your safety, and to help protect this unique resource, we ask that you please comply with the following regulations:
The following are prohibited at Bird Park:
Note: Please check at the property for posted advisories and regulations.
Commercial/Professional photography is allowed with permission. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to obtain a permit.
The Trustees reserves the right to photograph or video visitors and program participants for promotional use, and usage of our properties implies consent. Please read our photo and video policy.
Finding an easy enjoyable walk in one of our parks is as easy as, well, a walk in the park!
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The reservation was created and endowed in 1925 as a public park by local industrialist Charles Sumner Bird, Sr. and his wife, Anna, in memory of their oldest son, Francis William Bird (1888-1918), who succumbed to pneumonia at age 37.
"Eternally thankful for this suburban oasis...been seeking refuge there for 50 years!"
– Nancy Davis, Walpole resident and long-time Bird Park devotee.
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