Plan Your Visit

Welcome to Downtown Cary Park

We invite you to escape and explore the Park’s locations.
  • Academy Pavilion & Plaza

    Directly north of Frantz Square, stands Academy Pavilion. Inside you’ll find a Market 317, restrooms and an event space. The building winds its way through Academy Plaza where park-goers can enjoy lunches, meetings and an interactive fountain. The plaza is shaded by oak trees and includes an overlook of the Park.

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  • Gathering House and Garden

    Situated in a quiet corner of the Park, the Gathering House features 28 French doors which open to create an indoor/outdoor space. Beyond the doors lies the Gathering Garden which incorporates existing trees and many new plantings.

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  • Park Street Courts

    Lining Park Street is the Park’s active recreation area. Here you can expect table tennis rivalries, volleyball matches and putt-offs among friends. Park Street can be used as a flexible space for pop-up markets, food trucks and the Cary Farmer’s Market.

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  • Frantz Square

    Frantz Square encompasses the corner of Academy Street and Dry Avenue and includes Cary’s iconic fountain, public art and multipurpose lawn for events and rentals.

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  • Great Lawn & Pavilion

    At the center of the Park, a well-equipped performance pavilion provides infrastructure to host large events, and allows for more intimate experiences. From the Great Lawn visitors will enjoy concerts, movies, yoga classes and much more.

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  • The Bark Bar

    Enjoy craft beer, wine, non-alcoholic beverages and light snacks right beside the Barkyard.

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  • The Nest

    The Nest is the perfect spot for all to enjoy imaginative play. Two iconic cardinal play structures serve as the anchors, while a splash pad will provide fun during hot days. There are also multiple slides and a toddler play area so that the fun never stops.

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  • Skywalk

    Floating 17 feet above the eastern side of the Park is the Skywalk – an elevated walkway that lifts you into the tree canopy and offers a new perspective of the Park.

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  • Tiered Water Feature

    The Park’s tiered water feature was designed to improve water quality, mitigate flooding downstream and add to the Park’s aesthetics. Willow Isle is an island in the lower pond that features a public art piece, L’ILE FOLIE, that will provide shade for relaxing. 

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HOURS OF OPERATION

The Park is open 7:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m. daily.

Guest Services 

Visit us at Guest Services located in the bottom of the library near The Nest for all your Park-related questions. You can call guest services by dialing 311 or (919) 469-4000 if outside of Cary.

Guest Services Hours of Operations:

January – March: 

  • Monday – Saturday: 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. 
  • Sunday: 1:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. 

April – December: 

  • Monday – Saturday: 9:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. 
  • Sunday: 1:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. 

Parking

The Park is located at 327 South Academy Street Cary, NC 27511.

There are multiple parking options near the Park!

There is an accessible parking deck located behind the Cary Regional Library for public use. Additionally, parking is available in the lot on Charlie Gaddy Lane, at labeled street parking, and at the Town Hall Deck. There will be additional parking options developing throughout downtown.

Downtown Cary Parking

Park Rules & Safety

At Downtown Cary Park, we’ve established a set of rules and safety guidelines so that the risk of accident or injury is minimized and to ensure that everyone has a great day at the Park.

General Rules

The following items/activities are prohibited at Downtown Cary Park:

  • Glass containers and outside alcohol.
  • Riding skateboards, skates, scooters, rollerblades, bicycles or motorized recreational vehicles inside the Park.
  • Entering planting beds, ponds, and fountains.
  • Allowing your pet to be off leash outside the Barkyard.
  • Excessive amplified sound or noise.
  • Defacement of Park property.
  • Smoking in indoor spaces.
  • Littering of any kind.
  • Weapons of any kind unless permitted by law.
  • Driving poles, stakes or flags into the ground.
  • Grilling, cooking or open flames.
  • Confetti, glitter, silly string, piñatas, party poppers or streamers.
  • Erecting tents or structures without a permit or permission of Park staff.
  • Photography and filming of moderate to high impact as defined by the Cary’s Film/Video/Photography Guide. This level of photography and film must be scheduled in advance with Park staff.
  • Anything prohibited by Cary, NC Code of Ordinances.
Rules of the Splash Pad (located in The Nest)
  • No pets, wheeled toys, food, drink, glass containers, gum or candy allowed in the Splash Pad.
  • No lifeguard on duty. Use at your own risk.
  • Do not drink the Splash Pad water.
  • Swimsuits and/or appropriate attire must be worn at all times. 
  • Swim diapers must be worn by children who are not potty trained. 
  • No running or rough play. 
  • No soaps, detergents or shampoos allowed.  
  • Any person violating rules may be required to leave the Splash Pad area.
Rules of the Barkyard
  • A dog pass and signed waiver are required to enter the Barkyard.   
  • Children under 12 are not allowed in the Barkyard.   
  • Maximum of two registered dogs per human. 
  • All vaccination shots must be up-to-date.
  • Dogs under four months and female dogs in heat are prohibited.
  • Remove spike, choke, prong or pinch collars prior to entering.
  • Dogs must remain on leash when entering, when leaving and when outside the fenced area. 
  • Well socialized and friendly pups only. No rough play. Aggressive dogs will be asked to leave.
  • Please control barking for the courtesy of all guests and neighbors.
  • Never leave your dog unattended.
  • For each dog’s safety, no (animal or people) food, bones or toys are allowed in the play area.
  • Please clean after your dog. They poop, you scoop!
  • No littering. Use trash and recycling receptacles to dispose of trash, and keep our dogs safe and the play areas clean.
  • Stop dogs from digging and fill any inadvertent holes.
  • Always wear shoes.
  • No strollers.
Safety 

The safety of our visitors, staff and guests is the number one priority for the Park. The Downtown Cary Police Unit is embedded in the Park’s offices. In addition, officers will routinely patrol the Park and surrounding areas. There is also overnight security in the Park as well as numerous security cameras. Furthermore, there are two emergency phone boxes located in the Park.

Non-emergency police number: (919) 469-4012

accessibility

Website Accessibility

Downtown Cary Park strives to provide a positive experience for all guests. Our goal is
to facilitate accessibility on our website to better allow patrons to learn about the Park
and its offerings.

Accessibility Assistance

If you have difficulty using or accessing any element of this website or the Downtown
Cary Park mobile site, please feel free to call (919) 653-7181 or email
downtownparkinfo@carync.gov. We will work with you to provide the information, item,
or transaction you seek through a communication method that is accessible for
and consistent with the applicable law.

Feedback

We view accessibility as an ongoing effort and are continually seeking solutions that will bring all areas of our website and mobile site to the same level of overall web accessibility. Please contact (919) 653-7181 or email downtownparkinfo@carync.gov if you have any feedback or suggestions as to how we could improve the accessibility of this website. 

Park Accessibility

Downtown Cary Park is committed to making the Park accessible to people of all abilities.

Access

The entirety of the park is ADA accessible, with the exception of a maintenance path along the water’s edge. All spaces throughout the Park were thoughtfully designed and created to accommodate all capabilities. Patrons will experience accessible entries into each area of the Park with built-in ramp access as needed.

Drop Off & Parking

Patrons with limited mobility may be dropped off in the designated drop-off zone along Walker Street.

A limited number of accessible parking spaces are available in the parking garage adjacent to the park and the lot located on Academy Street across from the Park. A handicap hang tag or license plate must be displayed in order to park in these spaces. Patrons park on a first-come, first-served basis.

Restrooms

Wheelchair-accessible restrooms and water fountains are located throughout the Park. An adult changing table is available in the family bathroom in Guest Services.

Service Animals

Service animals are welcome at the Park provided they remain on a leash at all times. If you are bringing a service animal to an event, please notify the staff in advance or when you arrive.

Other Notable Accessibility Features

  • Accessible slides are located in The Nest play area.
  • The Nest features two play areas to accommodate various ages and abilities.
  • Accessible furniture is scattered throughout the Park, including picnic tables that can accommodate wheelchairs. 
  • Visual Indicators, Tactile Paving and Stair Treads have been incorporated into walkways to assist those with vision limitations.

Event Accessibility

Planning on visiting the Park for a performance or event and need to take advantage of our Accessibility Services? Let us know how we can accommodate you by filling out the form below!

Event Accessibility
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