The Rotary Park off North Main Street in downtown Greenville was full of pleasant little suprises.

Turning off Main Street, at first, all we could see was the baseball field.

“That’s the park? This is disappointing,” my 9-year-old moaned.

She changed her tune soon enough after discovering the playground, which is hidden on one side by trees and on the other side by the Bobby Pearse Community Building. The community center’s parking lot, not visible from Main, is located at 904 Townes Street across from Stone Academy. This is the only lot with spaces; there is only street parking on Ashley Street.

My kids quickly joined a group of others in sliding and swinging. The play structure was pretty standard, but nevertheless it inspired adults to play with their kids, with one dad hitting the slides like the kids. Two young men shot hoops at a tucked-away half court. Bikes strewn about indicated that many kids were from the neighborhood.

Before long, the creek caught my oldest child’s eye, and younger siblings soon followed. They slid down the grassy banks and hopped on stepping stones. My 7-year-old loved the wildflowers growing along the bank. My 5-year-old was mesmerized by weird, knobby tree roots, exposed by erosion, and she made a game of trying to balance on them.

Ultimately, the verdict was this park is a winner for its natural appeal. It is an L-shape, with the ball field on a wide side and the creek running through the long, narrower side. A path loops around both sides of the creek over earthen bridges, one with an attractive stonework wall and bench at one end.

Want to go?

North Main Rotary Park is located at 9 Ashley Ave.

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