Parks and Recreation

SkyCast Ozone Forecast

Click here for COVID-19 Information and Updates


CLICK HERE to see a summary of the Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department’s full reopening plans.

George Owens Nature Park

Providing families with outdoor opportunities since 1977.

1601 S. Speck Rd.
(North of East 23rd Street and Speck Road intersection)
(816) 325-7115

 Parking Lot gate closes at 5pm.  Please have your vehicle out by 5pm to avoid being locked in for the night.

Fall & Winter (Oct 1 - April 30)                Park & DeWitt Center Hours                             

                                                                   Tuesday - Friday:        8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

                                                                   Saturday:                    8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

                                                                   Sunday:                      Closed

                                                                   Monday:                     Closed

 Parking Lot gates closes at 5pm.  Please have your vehicle out by 5pm to avoid being locked in for the night.

COVID-19 Nature Park Operations – Please take extra precautions around our park equipment at this time, we cannot guarantee the pavilion, picnic tables, benches and other park assets have been sanitized between uses.  While we fully understand your need for recreational opportunities right now please exercise caution.


   NATURE NOTES (click to view)

George Owens Nature Park has given families the opportunity to reconnect with their natural environment since 1977. The park is open year round and provides 86 acres of beautiful forest, lakes, hiking trails and wildlife. Explore the DeWitt Center and experience rotating exhibits, a pond display and 4 large aquariums.

The current traveling exhibit shows Independence through the rock record - fossils, photographs and art will guide you along a comprehensive path of discovery.

The possibilities for adventure are endless.

wooded trail

        Park Amenities

  • Three miles of Hiking Trails (One Paved)
  • Two Fishing Lakes
  • Organized Group Campground
  • ADA Accessible Dock
  • Family Picnic Area
  • DeWitt Center
  • Rain Gardens
  • Bio Swales
  • Pavilion
  • Butterfly Garden
  • Outdoor and Nature Programs for the Entire Family


 Click here to check out rental fees for our facility!

Jackson County Gathering Limit Revisions

JACKSON COUNTY, MO (October 2, 2020) – The Jackson County Health Department has filed an amended order to take effect at 12:01 a.m. on October 9, 2020. This revised order aligns both indoor and outdoor gatherings by stating all gatherings should not exceed 100 people unless social distancing, mask wearing, and proper protocols are in place to limit potential transmission of COVID-19. At gatherings with less than 100 people, masks are still required to be worn at all times indoors (except private residences) and outdoors where social distancing cannot be maintained.

Gatherings continue to be high risk activities that have the potential to become super spreader events. Organizers and attendees of events and large gatherings, especially those that are most vulnerable, should take the risk of COVID-19 seriously when weighing the decision to attend an event.

Events with over 100 attendees can occur with less risk when masks are worn properly and contact is limited between attendees, staff, and others. Additionally, the new health order requires all gatherings exceeding 100 people to submit a Gathering Protocol at least 72 business hours in advance of the event. The Gathering Protocol must be approved by the City of Independence and easily accessible to all attendees.


New Order

Updated Guidance

Gathering Protocol PDF

Gathering Protocol Form


Upcoming Events




Original Tindall Art Show

July 1 - Nov 24, 2020

Tue-Sat: 8:30am - 5:00pm

Independence native Robert E. Tindall's artwork will be on display with our largest collection of his work yet!  16+ original works will be on display.


Family Outdoor Projects

Projects Kick Off Tuesday, Aug 11, 2020.


Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteer And Make A Difference!

If you have a love for the outdoors and want to help George Owens Nature Park, please consider volunteering your time at the nature park. Contact us at (816) 325-7115 to learn more.

Individuals and family volunteers will learn about our natural world by assisting park staff. We have volunteer opportunities that will fit your interest - gardening, maintaining bird feeders, assisting with nature programs, etc.