Fry Family Park

2533 Farber St. SE, Magnolia, OH 44643

Open Daily: All parks are open 24 hours a day, unless otherwise posted.

General Information: 330.477.3552

On-Duty Ranger: 330.353.2377

Rentals and Reservations: 330-409-8096

This 360-acre property has beautiful rolling topography with a mixture of grasslands, hardwood forests, a pond, wetlands, and significant stream and wooded riparian corridor.  It provides habitat for an array of songbirds, game birds, raptors, and small mammals.  A catch and release fishing pond is a .30 mile walk from the parking area next to the barn.  The trail is asphalt before traveling on grass and turf with a decline down to the pond.  Use the gravel access drive on the left traveling up the main driveway.

Upgrades to the park and new shelter have been made with funds from the Stark Community Foundation.

Read the Fry Family Park Master Plan

Harold S. Fry Visitor Center

A grant from Ohio Public Works Commission helped complete habitat restoration work in addition to a new Woodland Trail route.

The center includes a science lab, library, classroom and multi-purpose room, and outdoor gathering spaces available for rent.

The Visitor Center was originally the home of the Fry Family.  The home is in its original location and underwent renovation in 2019 to its present state.  Harold Fry worked with Stark Parks to transfer the property with the vision of creating a park everyone could enjoy.  He loved the idea that the family home could be used as a community gathering place where others could learn to appreciate nature.  The facility is available for rentals including the upper and lower levels and the back patio.

Harold Fry’s son, Richard, was Stark Parks first Park Director from 1977 to 1994.  Richard guided the district during the evolving years of the Park District’s history and worked incredibly hard to create and preserve a county-wide park system.  The Fry Family’s love of the outdoors and wildlife show during a visit to this park through water, land, and sky.

Rental Virtual Tour

The park is a perfect place to explore watersheds due to the high ridge that splits the water run-off to either the Tuscarawas or Nimishillen Creek watersheds.  The flow of water in this park provides an excellent real-world example of how watersheds work: Where does water surface flow depending on where it lands, how does the land control where the water goes next, and why is it important that our ground water “recharges”? The property also boasts a variety of water features including springs, an “oxbow” separated from the original flow of the Nimishillen Creek, streams, a pond, and wetlands.

Pollinators buzzing around this park have an important job to do and need areas like this to survive.  Through a Feed a Bee grant, pollinator plants will continue to be planted and maintained in several areas.  During the last bee survey, several Golden Northern Bumble bee, including queens, were identified here.  They are currently considered a vulnerable species.  Over 120 species of birds have been confirmed during Bioblitz surveys over the last several years and we look forward to more citizen scientists (like all of you) helping with future counts.

Dark Sky Initiative

Fry Family Park has been awarded an Urban Night Sky Place Certification from the International Dark Sky Association making it the first park in Ohio to achieve this designation and one of only two Dark Sky certified parks in Ohio!

An Urban Night Sky Place certification is awarded to a park, open space, observation site, or other similar property in or near a large urban environment. To become certified, parks must demonstrate planning and design that actively promotes an authentic nighttime experience in the midst of significant artificial light.

During Fry Park’s planning, special light fixtures that emit a dark-sky friendly light were installed throughout the park. These low color-temperature lights produce less light pollution and preserve the natural nighttime darkness. Artificial light pollution can impact the natural environment, from prematurely budding trees and plants, to disrupting native wildlife, and the circadian rhythms of humans.  Due to the park’s rural location and limited commercial enterprise in the area, Fry Park benefits from having little light pollution in the surrounding area as well.  The Lights Out program works to prevent bird strikes with buildings and reducing nighttime lighting in structures.  Get involved with monitoring and promoting bird-friendly efforts with the Akron-Canton Chapter of Lights Out.

From November 1 to April 30, the shelter area lights are off for stargazing on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays evenings.  From May through October the lights are off only on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  While the shelter lights are still turned on for rental groups, there is an override switch to temporarily turn them off during your stargazing visit.  Find out real-time weather conditions using this chart.

Although the shelter area provides the best view, here are other viewing areas in the park.

1.  The barn area (gravel driveway to left of driveway) is the darkest area in the park.  The rolling hills cover up the glowing lights from the north, giving you the perfect amount of darkness to see the Milky Way.  This spot is best if you have a telescope/equipment.

2.  Park at the Westbrook Trailhead and hike up the Sandy Valley Trail towards the pond or North Trail.  This spot is best for hiking under the stars, but not ideal for carrying equipment.

3.  Park by the “S Curve” near the driveway entrance.  This location gives you a beautiful view of the southern skies. There may be some light from the neighboring houses and vehicles, this spot is ideal for telescopes/equipment.




  • Bird Watching
  • Fishing
  • Hiking
  • On Your Own
  • Running and parkrun


  • Picnic Shelter

Interactive Map

Fry Family Park Map

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