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10 Reasons You'll Love Klyde Warren Park

 
Built on the overpass of a busy freeway, Klyde Warren Park opened in 2012, connecting Dallas’s Uptown district with Downtown Dallas and the Dallas Arts District. The attractive urban green space is small (just 5.2 acres) but mighty.  With daily free activities, upscale (for a park!) amenities, and a convenient location, it’s no surprise that the park attracts over a million visitors each year.

If you only have one day to spend in Dallas, I'd highly recommend spending the day at Klyde Warren Park and the adjacent Dallas Arts District. Here are a few reasons why.

It's a Great Place to Bring the Kids

Whether it's your kids or your grandkids you have in tow, they'll have a blast at Klyde Warren Park. The playground area is so modern. There's a slide that always reminds me of a treehouse, but it's not in a tree, and it looks like it came from the Jetsons.  Help, I need to borrow a kid!

Adults must be accompanied by a child in this part of the park, but there are tons of other activities grown-up kids can enjoy.  Nearby, the Imagination Playground lets kids of all ages build things with giant soft blocks that look like a cross between Tinkertoys and pool noodles. The park has game equipment for several activities like croquet and petanque. You can borrow game supplies for free, or you can just run around on the giant lawn if you need to leave adulting behind for a day.

It's All Free

Unless you're attending a special event, all the goodies except food and drinks are free at Klyde Warren Park. Ping pong, golf putting, yoga classes, you name it. There's even a "reading room" sponsored by the Dallas Morning News where you can read the paper or a magazine or even check out a book. There's even free WiFi. 

The Dallas Arts District Is Just Steps Away

Walk across eastbound Woodall Rogers Freeway at Harwood and you'll find yourself in the world's largest urban arts district. Six days a week (they're closed on Mondays) the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA), Nasher Sculpture Center, and Crow Museum of Asian Art open at 11AM. If the weather isn't perfect, you can still have a glorious day by stepping into one of their outstanding exhibits. Both the DMA and the Crow Museum offer free admission to their permanent collections. Admission to special exhibits and to the Nasher Sculpture Center are very affordable.

If it's beautiful outside, you may want to walk down Flora Street and see several architecturally significant buildings that house the museums and performance centers in the district. The free outdoor Hall Arts Sculpture Walk is also just a few blocks away.

It's a Great Place for Date Night

The free programming at Klyde Warren Park isn't just for kids and doesn't stop when the sun goes down. Check their Things to Do page to find out about free concerts, and holiday celebrations. In the spring and fall, you'll find dance lessons and free movies on the lawn. One of last fall's events was a simulcast of The Dallas Opera's "Magic Flute" performance.

It's Lovely Year Round, Especially at Night

Photo credit: Don Johnson via Flickr
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Thoughtful landscaping and paths throughout the park make it lovely any time of year. And at night, when the twinkly lights come on, it's magical.

The View of the Skyline is Breathtaking

Photo credit: Curtis Simmons via Flickr
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There's magnificent modern architecture all around the park, and the view of the skyline reminds you that you're in the heart of the city. The Hunt Consolidated headquarters building (far right) boasts cutting edge architectural features, just as the I.M. Pei designed Fountain Place (behind it to the left) did when it was built more than 30 years ago.

The park offers free weekly "standing tours" by the Architecture + Design Exchange (AD EX) that point out notable buildings in Uptown and Downtown Dallas.

You Can Ride the Historic McKinney Avenue Trolley

The McKinney Avenue Transit Authority (or M-Line) runs restored vintage trolleys on a 5-mile route through Uptown with more than 40 potential stops near restaurants, hotels, shopping, and more. It's free to ride the trolley, which operates 365 days a year. Trolleys run about every 20 minutes and there are two stops in Klyde Warren Park.

It's Dog Friendly

Photo credit: Keri Trinkle via Flickr
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Dogs are welcome in the park, and they can play off-leash in  the gated are aptly named "My Best Friend's Park."

They Have Food Trucks Every Day

Six or more food trucks pull up every day to serve lunch from 11AM to 3PM. On weekends, food truck hours are often extended until 8PM. Be sure to check the Upcoming Food Trucks section of their website for food truck hours. The information page also lists which food trucks are scheduled each day with links to a menu for each truck.

If you haven't caught the food truck craze, you can get lunch or dinner at one of the restaurants in the park.  Relish is a fast casual burger and hot dog stand. For table service, a full menu, and adult beverages, take a seat in the glass-enclosed Savor Gastropub or on its patio.

They Go All Out for Holidays

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Holidays are a big deal in Big D, and Klyde Warren Park goes all out and not just for Christmas. Follow their Facebook page or check their Things to Do calendar for upcoming holiday celebrations.
I can think of a few more reasons you'll love Klyde Warren Park in downtown Dallas, but for now, I think you should stop reading and just go check it out.