Looking for somewhere to try cable water-skiing? How about some skeet-shooting or horseback riding? You can find all that and more at the plethora of parks in the region.
1. Cable water-skiing -- Quiet Waters Park, 401 S. Powerline Road, Deerfield Beach, 954-360-1315. It's water, water everywhere at this county park, which includes a freshwater swimming beach, cable water-skiing, a variety of boats for rental, and Splash Adventure, an interactive children's water playground. Admission: $1 per person on weekends and holidays, $3 for Splash Adventure.
www.broward.org/parks. The park boasts an outdoor target range for pistols, rifles and skeet shooting, including a sporting clays course, clubhouse, snack bar and meeting room. Admission: $1 ages 6 and older on weekends and holidays.
3. RC Racing -- Mills Pond Park, 2201 NW Ninth Avenue (Powerline Road), between Oakland Park and Sunrise boulevards, Fort Lauderdale, 954-828-4565. This city park features a public remote-control racing track. For information on RC racing, call Broward County RC Club, 954-525-3304. (RC car racing also offered at South County Regional Park in Boca Raton, listed below.) Admission: adults $1, free for children under 12.
4. For the Disabled -- Colohatchee Park, 1975 NE 15th Avenue, Wilton Manors, 954-390-2130.
Amenities at this city park along the south fork of the Middle River include a playground with ADA-accessible equipment, basketball, horseshoes and volleyball. Fees: Must pay to use pavilion, playground and volleyball court if you have a group of 15 or more. Also, Tropical Park, 7900 SW 40 Street, Miami, 305-226-8315, ext. 221, offers 12 lighted wheelchair-accessible tennis courts, as well as racquetball facilities.
5. Bicycle racing course -- Brian Piccolo Park, 9501 Sheridan Street, Cooper City, 954-437-2600. Admission: $1 ages 6 and older on weekends and holidays. This county park offers a number of sports facilities, including a 333.3-meter velodrome bicycling track and a 200-meter banked track for in-line skating, as well as three bike and jogging paths. For bike rentals and cycling and in-line skating programs and lessons, call 954-437-2626.
6. RC Airplane Field -- South County Regional Park, 1200 Park Access Road, Boca Raton, 561-966-6600.
This county park features a remote control airplane field, as well as remote control off-road car track. The privately run Coconut Cove Waterpark and Recreation Center is located in the park as well, with waterslides, a river ride and water playground.
7. Disc Golf -- Kendall Indian Hammocks Park, 11395 SW 79th Street, Kendall, 305-596-9324. This park boasts an 18-hole disc golf course at the eastern end of the park. Players use a Frisbee or other disk and aim for the "hole," which are low posts supporting a 3-foot chain basket. As with regular golf, there are varying yardages from each tee, and the object is to have your disc land in the basket. Players should bring their own regular or competition Frisbee and a pencil to record the score. Admission: free. Another disc golf course (18 holes) is located at Tradewinds Park, 3600 W. Sample Road, Coconut Creek, 954-968-3880.
8. Picnicking -- Matheson Hammocks Park, 9610 Old Cutler Road, Miami, 305-665-5475. While visitors can pack a picnic to any park in the region, this beachside park was selected as "Best Picnic Spot" by South Florida Parenting magazine. Besides its man-made atoll pool and beach area, the park offers a full-service marina and a snack bar, picnic pavilions and nature trails and bike paths. Admission: Free, but it's $4 per car to park in the two beach lots.
9. Antique Carousel: -- Crandon Park, 4000 Crandon Boulevard, Key Biscayne; 305-361-5421. Take the Rickenbacker Causeway to Key Biscayne ($1 toll). This former coconut plantation boasts one of the top beaches, not just in the state, but also in the country. The Family Amusement Center features a restored 1949 carousel left behind by the old Crandon Zoo. Hours: 10 a.m. to sundown, carousel open until 5 p.m. Admission: Free, but parking is $5 per car, $10 for RVs and buses. Fees for some amusement center activities.
10. Petanque Court: John Prince Park, 2520 Lake Worth Road west of I-95, Lake Worth, 561-964-4420. Other entrances at 27600 Sixth Avenue South and 4759 South Congress Avenue. This large 726-acre county park features fishing, water skiing and boating, along with its own petanque court, for a round of the European lawn-bowling game, a distant cousin of horseshoes and a close relative of bocce.
Top 10 specialty parks in South Florida
Those who seek memorable vacation experiences on their visit to West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale or Miami, can seek variety at these parks.
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