With more than 3,200 acres of park and green space locations and recreation facilities - not to mention over 53 miles of trails - the City of Columbia has a plethora of options for individuals and families seeking to spend a little time outdoors. The city maintains 32 neighborhood parks, two regional parks, eight nature parks, 14 community parks and five special purpose parks. Amenities include two golf courses, an archery range, three disc golf courses, 10 garden plots available for rent, a skate park, three pools, two water play areas and a swimming lake. Whether you want to have a picnic, go fishing, play anything from soccer to roller hockey or simply take your kids to the playground, Columbia has what you're looking for.

After the successful renewal of a quarter-cent sales tax for capital improvements, Columbia Parks and Rec has plans for a number of projects, including completion of Atkins Park, Phase II of Douglass Park - which includes the addition of a skate spot, replacement of playground equipment and a new shelter - and continued development of Gans Recreation Area, Columbia's newest regional park.

On the recreation side, the department is working on growing popular events like the Splat! youth mud run and adding new programs like Yappy Hour - a social hour at Twin Lakes Recreation Area for dogs and their owners - as well as expanding events that utilize the city's trail system, such as the Roc 7k trail run and the Bear Creek Run half marathon.