Pocatello Parks & Recreation Department

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Parks & Recreation


The Parks and Recreation Department strives to serve the Pocatello community with quality recreation programs, well-maintained parks, trails, and beautiful open spaces. Our aim is to help provide opportunities, activities and the facilities to bring pleasure to people’s lives. Our parks serve as a source of great community pride, and we are firm believers in the benefits recreation brings to both the years in one’s life and the life in those years.
Register for Pocatello Parks and Recreation Activities
Pocatello Parks and Recreation Activity Guide
Pocatello Parks and Facilities
Pocatello Community Recreation Center
Pocatello Ross Park Aquatic Complex
Pocatello East Fork Mink Creek Nordic Center

Play Often, Live Better!

Did you get to see the playful river otters that visited the Edson Fichter Nature Area last fall? Quite a few lucky onlookers caught sight of the furry river dwellers as they swam, splashed, ate fish, napped, and then swam and splashed some more. It was reported that the curious little creatures seemed to pose for photos, too. In addition to seeing otters, those walking these and other nearby trails regularly see and photograph birds, ranging from tiny hummingbirds to majestic eagles, as well as an array of wildflowers and butterflies. Spring and summer are an ideal time to discover the extraordinary beauty that surrounds us on the dozens of miles of hiking, biking, and walking trails in and around our city. Pack your camera and some water, and invite along a friend to explore and “photo-document” your outdoor adventures. If you prefer a close-up view of wildlife from the convenience of a paved trail, Zoo Idaho is the ideal spot. In addition to regular visits where you will find animals ranging from barnyard varieties to wild cats and grizzly bears, there are special events and programs throughout the year. Children will enjoy Zoo-4-Tots and summer camps, high school students may want to explore the internship program, and visitors of all ages will enjoy Endangered Species Day, Enrichment Day, and Zoo Hullaballoo. For information about these and other events and programs, visit ZooIdaho.org. There are dozens of sports opportunities and outdoor adventures waiting for you. Whether you love animals are an athlete, or something in-between, take a tip from the otters and Play Often and Live Better!
 As always, I am proud to be your Mayor.
 Brian C. Blad
 Mayor of Pocatello

Message from the Director

On behalf of the Parks & Recreation Department Staff Team, welcome to the City of Pocatello’s Spring/Summer 2022 programs and services! We invite everyone to get outdoors and “Play Often, Live Better” this Spring & Summer at our beautiful parks, open spaces, and scenic Greenway Trails to enjoy the fresh air, green grass, and warm, sunny days with family & friends. How about these great ways to spend time with those you love, and establish a healthy routine together?

  • “Go on a Walk” – at one of the City’s Greenway trails, a City Creek/Mink Creek nature hike, or just a stroll through the park will have you smiling in no time.
  • “Make a Splash” – at our Ross Park Aquatic Complex and Community Recreation Center, or sign-up for some swim lessons.
  • “Get Your Game On” – sign up for a sports league, a Fun Run/Walk event or outdoor adventure, or enjoy a pick-up game at a local park with family & friends.
  • “Visit a Playground” – the City’s awesome Playgrounds have so much more to offer than just swing sets, explore the community for Playgrounds that bring all generations together.
  • “Got Wheels?” – visit our local Skate Park at Lower Ross, or try one of the City’s superb Greenway Trails, they’re paved and easy to get around on for bicyclists & skaters alike.
  • “Plan a Day or Night Out for the Whole Family” – nothing says summertime like a picnic at the park, or a relaxing day together at Zoo Idaho followed by a free Municipal Band Concert at the Ross Park Bandshell.
  • “Calling all Furry Friends” – try checking out the City’s Historic Downtown Dog Park and Katie’s Dog Park as well.

Great places to meet new friends!

Whether your interests lie in exploring nature & fitness, special events, cultural arts, or sports & aquatics, all are encouraged to take full advantage of the endless quality of life and well-being benefits our Parks & Recreation Department facilities and programs have to offer!

Other exciting developments…Thanks to a Partnership with Connections Credit Union and support from the Zoo Idaho Zoological Society, the “Zoo Connections Entrance & Gift Shop Building” at Zoo Idaho will officially open for the 2022 Season – stay tuned for Grand Opening Celebration details! The beautiful log-cabin design structure will feature ticketing areas, gift shop & concessions areas, as well as restroom facilities. Staff has also been busy developing & finalizing a draft Master Plan for Ross Park, built on input solicited from the community and with the Parks & Recreation Advisory Board serving as the steering committee. Ross Park is the gem of the City of Pocatello’s park system and has over 145 acres of available land, approximately 95 acres of which are currently developed. The goal of the process is to craft a 5-25 year Master Plan to guide the future development of Ross Park, which will enrich its recreational & cultural opportunities while maintaining and enhancing its natural beauty and historical, recreational & educational features. Staff plans to bring the final draft version of the plan forward for City Council this summer for review and consideration.

There really is something for everyone at Pocatello Parks & Recreation. Please invite your friends & loved ones to enjoy the great gifts of spending time together, and make Spring & Summer 2022 one to remember, by Playing Often and Living Better!

John Banks
Parks & Recreation Director
City of Pocatello