16 Nearby Parks to Hit for 10 Cents, This Weekend Only

Celebrate the Indiana park system’s centennial year with pocket change.

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In case you haven’t heard, all of Indiana’s 24 state parks and eight lakes are offering admission for just 10 cents this weekend (June 4 and 5), down from the normal $7 for Indiana residents, to celebrate the park system’s 100th birthday this year. With 16 state parks and lakes located within 90 minutes of Indy, a totally drivable day-trip to enjoy the great outdoors. This weekend, check one or more of them out—it’ll be fun for the whole family.

Fort Harrison State Park

Probably the most familiar park to Indy dwellers, Fort Harrison State Park, offers trails to run, bike, and hike on, a fishing pond, shaded picnic tables, horseback riding, and plenty of grills for cooking up some juicy burgers. It’s the perfect place when you want to stay close to home but still get outdoors. 6000 N. Post Rd., 317-591-0904
From downtown Indy: 20 minutes

Mounds State Park

Drive just 50 minutes northeast of the city and find yourself at Mounds State Park, home to 10 unique earthworks built by the prehistoric Indians known as the Adena-Hopewell people. Along with the ancient constructions, there are bountiful hiking trails, picnicking areas, and fishing hideaways. A swimming pool is part of the fun at the park, so bring your bathing suit and sunblock and take a dip. 4306 Mounds Rd., Anderson, 765-642-6627
From downtown Indy: 50 minutes

Lieber State Recreation Area

Surrounding beautiful Cagles Mill Lake, Lieber State Recreation Area grants access to that aquatic life all of us inlanders crave. Boating, fishing, waterskiing, and even taking a water safari boat tour are all possible in Cloverdale. An Aquatic Center featuring a zero-entrance pool, fun bubblers, and a tornado waterslide will leave your kids wonderfully tuckered out. 1317 W. Lieber Rd., Cloverdale, 765-795-4576
From downtown Indy: 50 minutes

Summit Lake State Park

In New Castle, you’ll be greeted by Summit Lake State Park’s expansive acreage, including a lake accommodating great fishing, boating, and waterskiing. A swimming beach is located on Summit Lake’s shore, and with temperatures reaching the upper 80s, it’s a great place to sit back, relax, and enjoy the sunshine. 5993 N. Messick Rd., New Castle, 765-766-5873
From downtown Indy: 1 hour

Brown County State Park

Sixteen thousand acres of hills, ridges, and ravines are tucked into Brown County State Park, Indiana’s largest, where a fulfilling day of hiking, swimming, and climbing could be yours for just 10 cents. The Abe Martin Lodge has a new construction you should be sure to check out: an indoor water park, which is fun for all ages. Take in a sunrise or sunset in one of the renowned vistas before you leave the charming town of Nashville. 1801 S.R. 46 E., Nashville, 812-988-6406
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 5 minutes

Prophetstown State Park

Travel northwest to West Lafayette and visit Prophetstown State Park, the newest addition to the Indiana State Parks, which sits on the banks of the intersection of the Tippecanoe and Wabash Rivers. A past hunting ground for the Native American people, this is the perfect place to see Indiana’s famous prairie grass. If you get too hot—which you probably will—take a lap, or two, at the outdoor aquatic center that has a tube slide, body flume, adventure channel, and lazy river. 5545 Swisher Rd., West Lafayette, 765-567-4919
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 5 minutes

McCormick’s Creek State Park

One of the state’s more popular parks, McCormick’s Creek State Park is a fantastic place to take advantage of the 10-cent admission this weekend. Nestled among the limestone canyon, flowing creek, and splashing waterfalls, Wolf Cave is a fun place to go exploring, especially since no bats will frighten you. Before you leave, have dinner with a view at the Canyon Inn, located right on the grounds. 250 McCormick’s Creek Park Rd., Spencer, 812-829-2235
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 10 minutes

Shades State Park

The name may clue you in to the shady ravines and hiking trails that Shades State Park holds inside its gates; it’s truly the ideal place for adventure-seeking families and leisure-loving groups alike. Overlooking Sugar Creek, views from the hills won’t be beat, and canoeing from the stream itself will feel like a whimsical journey into another land. 7751 S. 890 W., Waveland, 765-435-2810
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 15 minutes

Turkey Run State Park

This might be the perfect weekend to take a drive to a hiking haven that needs no introduction of its own­—Turkey Run State Park—and finally understand why everyone love it. With sandstone ravines, ladder-laced trails, and a cloud-touching forest, this Indiana gem will awe you with its beauty. If you’re not the hiking type, there are plenty of other activities to check out, including tennis, horseback riding, and swimming. 8121 E. Park Rd., Marshall, 765-597-2635
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 15 minutes

Monroe Lake

Right in Bloomington, Monroe Lake supplies you with more than 23,900 acres to explore to your heart’s content—but 10,750 of those acres are filled with the beautiful lake that you can boat, swim (at two beaches), fish, or waterski until exhaustion. This local-favorite spot is sure to be packed, so get there early if you want to check it out. 4850 S. S.R. 446, Bloomington, 812-837-9546
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 20 minutes

Raccoon State Recreation Area

Sitting on the shoreline of Cecil M Harden Lake, Raccoon State Recreation Area entices visitors with a native forest, home to many flora and fauna. Roller Mill, from the 1880s, is available for touring and corn-grinding demonstrations, if that strikes your fancy. Of course, with both the lake and Raccoon Creek within the gates, the aquatic recreation is hard to beat—there’s boating, a swimming beach, waterskiing, and fishing, all right under your nose. 1588 S. Raccoon Parkway, Rockville, 765-344-1412
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 25 minutes

Hardy Lake

Visit Hardy Lake, the only reservoir in the state not made for flooding control, creating beautiful aesthetics along the shoreline and inviting you to swim at the beach or go boating in the blue water. This state park is the only DNR property boasting a raptor rehabilitation center, so you can get a quick lesson on Indiana’s hawks, falcons, owls, and vultures. 5620 N. Hardy Lake Rd., Scottsburg, 812-794-3800
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 30 minutes

Salamonie Lake

Managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Salamonie Lake offers a getaway just northeast of the city that grants access to a swimming beach, fishing pier, great canoeing and kayaking, expansive boating area, and plenty of room for your heated volleyball games. If you’re a biker, this is a great place to try out a mountain bike, or a leisurely ride along on a shaded path. 9214 Lost Bridge Rd. West, Andrews, 260-468-2125
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 30 minutes

Shakamak State Park

Four hundred acres of water lie inside Shakamak State Park, located a little southwest of Indy, where you’ll have a hard time cramming all the fun-filled activities into one day. To make the trip a little more worthwhile, you could spread the hiking, fishing, swimming, and nature-loving into two days and camp out at one of more than 160 campsites. 6265 W. S.R. 48, Jasonville, 812-665-2158
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 30 minutes

Versailles State Park

Adventure southeast to fossil-loaded Versailles State Park and take in the rolling hills of southern Indiana. Whether you want to kayak, canoe, swim, fish, or hike, the state’s second-largest state park boasts it all. If you’re a history buff, this is the perfect spot for a visit, as it was traversed heavily during the Civil War by Morgan Raider’s troops. 1387 U.S. 50 East, Versailles, 812-689-6424
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 30 minutes

Whitewater Memorial State Park

While a little bit of a drive, Whitewater Memorial State Park makes up for it with nine miles of horseback riding trails, shoreline hiking, fishing, boating, camping, and swimming in the refreshing lake. The beach grants access to a perfect spot to spend a June weekend, and shaded picnic tables offer a respite for munching on some food before heading back out into the fun. 1418 S. S.R. 101, Liberty, 765-458-5565
From downtown Indy: 1 hour 30 minutes

Parks with pools are keeping their fees in place—all cost $3 to enter the pool, except Prophetstown State Park, which costs $5. And if you’re headed to one of the large reservoirs or lakes to swim, fish, boat, or ski, make sure you check out the DNR’s Bobber the Water Dog page.

Otherwise, dig up your dime and head outside to enjoy the weekend.

 

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