Techny Prairie Park and Fields
Location: 1750 Techny Road
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- 107.82 acres
- Four ball diamonds
- Six batting cages
- Accessible fishing stations
- Four picnic areas for rent
- Skate park
- Sled hill
- Two turf fields
- Nine-hole golf course
- Golf shop
- Trail Through Time
- Multi-use trail
Just a few blocks from downtown Northbrook, Techny Prairie Park and Fields combines the beauty of nature with the buzz of ball fields and sports activities. The Park District transformed the site formerly known as the Anetsberger property and the adjacent Meadowhill Park South to create a one-stop recreational showpiece. The park contains a nine-hole golf course, a lake, lighted turf fields for soccer or lacrosse, ball fields, batting cages, a 22,000-square-foot skate park, educational and recreational trails, a kidney-shaped playground and a lighted sled hill.
About half of the park is open prairie and woodlands, providing a beautiful setting for walking, bird watching and stargazing. Nature lovers can enjoy a fishing pond, picnic shelter and hiking trails, as well as the award-winning "Trail Through Time," a unique natural history walk with a restored wetland along the North Branch of the Chicago River. The educational trail shows how early settlers developed a relationship with the land, celebrating the first pioneer settlers, Potawatomie Indians, local plant hybridizer Brother Charles and landscape architect Jens Jensen.
The landscape at Techny Prairie Park and Fields is rich with roses, daylilies, tall grasses, purple and yellow cone flowers, mountain mint, swamp milkweed, sweet autumn clematis, compass plants and prairie monarda. Animals living in the park include herons, hawks, swallows, indigo buntings, spotted sandpipers, fish, turtles, frogs, ducks and dragonflies.
Separating the active and passive uses of the park is the nine-hole Anetsberger Golf Course, a par-three course geared toward beginners and older players, as well as anyone who wants a shorter, more relaxed game. The Techny Prairie Center offers a golf shop and registration, a patio/sitting area, vending machines and restrooms.
Entering the park from Techny Road on the south, drivers see the peaceful pond and lush greens of the golf course, framed by the breezeway at the Techny Prairie Center. Anets Drive is closed to traffic but available for bicyclists and walkers.
An extensive pathway system ties together the sections of the park with more than two miles of trails, which also connect to a pathway system in Meadowhill Park. The result is a continuous trail reaching Meadowbrook Elementary School, Northbrook Junior High School, Village Green and downtown Northbrook. The trail system is expected to link to an additional 40 miles of regional trails in the future.
Near the golf course, a picnic shelter provides a covered area with two large grills, tables and a multi-level water fountain. The shelter can be reserved for cookouts and parties; restrooms are available nearby in the Techny Prairie Center.
Three covered shelters offer a place to rest or visit, near the skate park, the ball diamonds and the playground. The design of the shelters reflects the architectural style of the Techny Prairie Center.
The popular sled hill remains from the former Meadowhill Park South, along with a warming house, stairs and lights for evening use. The hill measures 28 feet in height.
In 1993, the Society of the Divine Word donated 47.82 acres to the Park District. That property became Meadowhill South Park, which held a formal dedication on June 22, 1996, and then became part of Techny Prairie Park and Fields in 2006.
The Grand Opening of Techny Prairie Park and Fields on September 30, 2006 represented the culmination of years of hopes and plans to offer a wide assortment of recreational activities at one location. In a referendum in March of 2000, residents overwhelmingly approved the Park District’s purchase of 60 acres that had been owned by the Anetsberger family. Six years later, after countless meetings, surveys, focus groups, public comments, drawings, bids and contracts, the idea became a reality for the community. The Grand Opening featured four separate ribbon-cutting ceremonies to acknowledge the people who had supported and helped develop the park facilities.