What's Happening

Polk County Parks & Recreation strives to maintain safe, clean parks and facilities for citizens and visitors to experience leisure, recreation, and educational endeavors. The division provides a wide variety of recreational opportunities including special events/programming, trails, boat ramps, campgrounds and cultural opportunities. In order to serve the changing needs of its customers and to keep the parks and facilities looking and operating at their best, constant planning for park additions and improvements is required. As part of these improvements, input from the community is often sought through public meetings or surveys.

This page is intended to outline progress reports on current and future projects and inform residents and visitors of upcoming public meetings. Please refer back to this page for updates as we continue to enhance the many recreational opportunities throughout Polk County.


Park Name: Lake Gwyn

Location: 315 Fourth Wahneta St. E, Winter Haven, FL

Description: The construction of a multipurpose/soccer field was recently completed and is now open for public use. Currently, a firm is working on the design, engineering and permitting of the remainder of the park. Future expansion of park amenities will be done in phases, dependent upon available funding through a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG).

Time Line: Design, Engineering, and Permitting is scheduled to be complete in August 2016. Park development will be ongoing, as funding becomes available.


Park Name: Loyce E. Harpe Park

Location: 500 W. Carter Road, Mulberry, FL 

Description: The Board adopted a Master Plan for the park in November 2014. The Plan outlined interest in a grand pavilion, basketball courts, tennis courts, picnic shelters, restroom facility, walking trails and a disc golf course. Development of these amenities will be done in phases, as funding becomes available.  

Time Line: Construction of the grand pavilion is wrapping up, with an anticipated opening of March 2017.


Park Name: Walker Road

Location: Northeast of the intersection of Swindell and Walker Roads, Lakeland

Description: The contract for phase one construction was approved by the board in February. Construction of phase one will include a softball complex (fields, restroom, and concession), parking, playground and multipurpose fields (soccer, football, or lacrosse).

Time Line: Construction of phase one is under way and is expected to be complete by Spring 2017.


Park Name: Panther Point Trail

Location: Marshall Hampton Reserve (intersection of Thornhilll Road and Winter Lake Road)

Description: The northern phase of the trail is complete and open to the public.  The 5-mile stretch (10 miles round trip) is the first phase of the project, which will ultimately be 8.75 miles when complete and connect to Fort Fraser Trail on US 98 South.  The trail is perfect for hiking, biking, horseback riding, wildlife viewing, and nature photography.  Horseback riders must obtain a Special Use Permit.  The trail itself is a mixture of natural and stabilized soils.    

Time Line: This second phase does not yet have an anticipated opening date.

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The Polk County Board of County Commissioners is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer.

Polk County Board of County Commissioners