Explore 28 Great Parks

Make it your mission to explore as many of these state, national and local parks as you can this summer, and use our guide as your road map to adventure.

DISCLAIMER: The information in this article was fact checked and accurate at press time, but 417 Magazine cannot guarantee its accuracy indefinitely.

Stockton Lake is known for sailing, but if you're a landlubber, waterfront campsites at Stockton State Park offer unbeatable views of the lake. Photo by Chuck Travers.

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Missouri’s natural spaces are some of the state’s best assets, and there are more to explore than you might realize. In addition to your favorite neighborhood parks, our region is packed with state parks and even a few national park properties that preserve huge swaths of our most beautiful places. Make it your mission to explore as many of these state, national and local parks as you can this summer, and use our guide as your road map to adventure. 

State Parks

Bennett Spring State Park

Big Sugar Creek State Park

Bryant Creek State Park

Eleven Point State Park

Grand Gulf State Park

Mammoth Springs State Park

Ozark Mountain State Park

Prairie State Park

Pomme de Terre State Park

Roaring River State Park

Stockton State Park

Table Rock State Park

Local Parks

Dunnegan Memorial Park—Bolivar

Morse Park—Neosho

Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park—Springfield

National Parks and Historic Sites

Battle of Carthage State Historic Site

Gateway Arch at Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Park

George Washington Carver National Monument

Grant's Farm

Harry S. Truman Birthplace State Historic Site

Nathan Boone Homestead State Historic Park

National Frontier Trails Museum

National Historic Lewis & Clark Trail

Osage Village State Historic Site

Ozark National Scenic Riverways

​Pony Express National Museum

Trail of Tears

Wilson's Creek National Battlefield

Events this Summer

Butterfly Festival

There’s a caterpillar petting zoo, ladybugs on display, a costume contest and more. Free, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. June 24, Springfield Botanical Gardens

Kayak, canoe and paddleboard rentals

This is your chance to get out onto the water at Lake Springfield! $10 per hour, ongoing through summer, Lake Springfield Boathouse and Marina

Adventure Days

Kids age 11 to 14 can take on caving in Arkansas, paddleboarding on Table Rock Lake, climbing at Zenith Climbing Center and paddling on the James River. June 15, June 29, July 6, July 13; $30 per class, $100 for all four classes. Register by calling 417-833-8647.

Eleven Point Paddling Trip

Weather permitting, this overnight paddling and camping trip takes participants on a 20-mile trek down a spring-fed river. August 5 to 5 p.m. August 6.; $45. Register by calling 417-833-8647.

Click here to find more summer activities. 

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