History of the Parks

In the News. . .

Milwaukee County Parks were featured in an article in The New York Times about Frederick Law Olmsted on September 2, 2011. Read this article and about Olmsted's Parks in Milwaukee


Book about the Parks. . .
Milwaukee County Parks, by Laurie Muench Albano, takes readers on a photographic tour of the area's earliest parks - town squares and beer gardens established by the early settlers - through the creation of city and county park commissions, to the parks today. Learn more about the book


Our park system has long been a source of pride for the communities of Milwaukee County in southeastern Wisconsin. With over 140 parks and parkways totaling nearly 15,000 acres, we offer a source of recreational enjoyment for citizens and visitors alike.

Besides the tax levy, park user fees support our programs. Additional financial assistance comes from federal and state grants, non-profit partners and corporate sponsors.

Our park system began with the creation of The Milwaukee County Park Commission on August 20, 1907. Although parks had already been established within the limits of the City of Milwaukee by the City Park Commission, the visionary new County Park Commission had a much broader goal for the park system. Early Commissioners conceived of a park system that would form a "green belt" or series of scenic drives and parks encircling the county. Parks were located in outlying areas to allow for population expansion. Commissioners selected land not only for its natural beauty and interest, but also for its fitness for various forms of active and passive recreation.


Learn more about these parks:

 Learn more about the people behind the parks



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Milwaukee County Parks, 9480 Watertown Plank Road, Wauwatosa, WI 53226

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