Lake Rim Park
Lake Rim Park
2214 Tar Kiln Drive [ map ]
Park Hours: Mar.-Oct. 7 am-9 pm; Nov.-Feb. 7 am-5 pm
Office Hours: Mon.-Fri. 8 am-5 pm
Whether you want to take a stroll on the one-mile border trail through the wetlands to Bone Creek, play a game of soccer with friends, or have a family picnic, Lake Rim Park offers something for everyone. An assortment of outdoor amenities, including picnic areas, horseshoe pits, walking trails, tennis courts, sand volleyball courts, athletic fields, natural areas, a Native American themed garden, and children’s playgrounds are here for you to enjoy. All facilities are open to the public on a first come, first serve basis unless they are reserved. To find out how you can reserve a picnic shelter or athletic field for your special event contact the park office. Well-behaved, furry family members are welcome to enjoy a walk around the park too, but they mustbe on a leash and under your control at all times. THANK YOU FOR CLEANING UP AFTER YOUR PETS!!
For more information on Lake Rim Park's Summer Camp programming, please see our Summer Camp page.
All programs will meet at the Gillis Information Center unless otherwise noted. You must pre-register for all programs. Register early; space is limited in most classes. If enrollment is low the class will be cancelled. Please contact the park offi ce if you would like to receive copies of our monthly calendars with updated program information.
Fishing Tackle Loaner Program
Try your hand at fi shing without buying the equipment. This program allows you to borrow a rod and reel for 24 hours and provides a great opportunity for the whole family to get outside. A driver's license is equired to register.
All ages; Mon.-Fri.; 8 am-5 pm; Free
Lake Rim Park Scavenger Hunt
Pick up a self-guided scavenger hunt worksheet from the office to take along with you as you explore the park. They are free and fun for families, groups or individuals.
All ages; Mon.-Fri.; 8 am-5 pm; Free
Educational Group Programs
Lake Rim Park offers ranger-led environmental and history programs. Topics offered include: wetlands, animal adaptations, beaver ecology, tree identification, rocks and minerals, fossils, insects, the naval stores industry, local Native American cultures and more. Groups will have a chance to experience the natural world and visit actual historic sites on the property. Programs are offered by appointment only. This is a great opportunity for schools, churches, civic groups and scouts to learn about our world.
We can also travel to your site if you cannot make it to the park.
All ages; Mon.-Fri.; 8 am-5 pm; Programs taught at the park are free, outreach programs are $25 excluding Cumberland County Public Schools
Preschoolers will have a chance to discover nature while making new friends. A new topic will be explored each session through stories, crafts, and activities. Space is limited. Call by the Tues. before the program to register.
3-6 yrs with a parent; 10-11 am; Free
Thurs., March 14: Snails
Thurs., April 11: Nocturnal Animals
Thurs., May 16: Toads
Thurs., June 6: Seeds
Thurs., July 25: Snakes
Thurs., Aug. 22: Raccoons
For a fun way to explore the park, go on an Alphabet Hike with your little ones. Children will enjoy the fun of a scavenger hunt as they search for the letters of the alphabet while walking the Border Trail. Each letter is a clue to something that is found in the park. This is a guided hike with a park ranger. Groups can set-up an appointment for a private hike. Call to register by day before the program.
3-5 yrs with an adult; Thurs. March 21 and Tues., May 14; 10-11 am; Free
Egg Décor and More
Learn about the different kinds of eggs in nature while decorating your own Easter eggs. Call to register by March 26.
3+ with an adult; Thurs., March 28; 3:30-4:30 pm; $2 paid on the day of event
Go Fly a Kite
Materials and instruction on kite-making will be provided. After you are fi nished with your kite try it out on the football field. Call to register by April 1.
5+ with an adult; Wed., April 3; 10 am-noon; $2 paid on the day of event
Dinosaurs in the Dirt
After a brief introduction to dinosaurs, children will venture to the volleyball court to dig for "dinosaur bones" and play in our "giant sand box." Shovels, buckets and, of course, dinosaurs will be provided for children to play with. Groups can set-up an appointment for a private program. Space is limited. Call to register by the day before the program.
5-under yrs with an adult; Wed., April 24; Tues., June 4; Thurs., Aug. 29; 9-11 am; Free
What better day to get outdoors and learn about trees than National Arbor Day! Over 30 species of trees can be found at Lake Rim Park. Learn how to identify our native trees by bark, seeds, leaves, flowers, fruit, and where they grow. Call to register by April 25.
All ages; Fri., April 26; 4-5 pm; Free
Spring is a great time to get outside and take in some nature. Join a park ranger on a guided hike down the Border Trail as you learn how to identify spring wildfl owers and about their signifi cance. Call to register by May 15.
All ages; Thurs., May 16; 3-4 pm; Free
Castles in the Sand
Can't make it to the beach this summer? Then bring your preschooler to Lake Rim Park to try their hand at making sand castles. Shovels, pails, sand castle molds, water and plenty of sand will be provided as we turn our volleyball court into a beach. Look for seashells, dig a hole or make a fort under the shade of a tent. Bring a chair and watch the children have fun in this unstructured play date. Space is limited. Call to register by day before the program.
5-under yrs with an adult; Fri.; May 31 and July 26; 9-11 am; Free
Tar Kiln Tour
Take a behind-the-scenes look at a historical treasure located at Lake Rim Park. Join a park ranger to view the remnants of the Weed's Lightwood Plant, a century-old turpentine factory. Learn about the importance of the naval stores industry in NC and fi nd out why we are really known as "The Tar Heel State." Call to register by June 6.
12+ with an adult; Fri., June 7; 10-11:30 am; Free
Find out how to identify insects, where they live, what they eat, which ones are benefi cial and which ones you should be careful around. A park ranger will discuss and display many insects that you may or may not be familiar with. Call to register by Aug. 20.
All ages; Wed., Aug. 21; 10-11 am; Free
Come learn the basics of fishing at the John E. Pechmann Fishing Education Center next door to Lake Rim Park. A park ranger will discuss fi sh identifi cation and ecology before you try your luck on the ponds stocked with catfish and bream. Fishing poles and worms will be provided. Catch and release only, no fishing license required. Space is limited. Call to register by day before the class.
8+, 15-under yrs must be accompanied by an adult; Tues.; April 2 and July 2; Fri., Aug. 16; 9 am-noon; Free
The archery class is designed to introduce the sport of archery to beginners. Although most participants are children, adults are welcome also. Participants will use state of the art compound bows as they learn the basics of archery. Safety, proper stance and follow through will be taught. You will be hitting the bull's eye in no time! Register at Lake Rim Park by the day before the class. Space is limited.
8+; Fri., April 5; Sat., April 20; 1-4 pm; $5
Archery Challenge Course
Have a little fun with archery as you test your skills shooting a variety of targets, playing archery games, and taking on archery challenges. Participants will also get an introduction to fi eld archery and 3-D archery. Some experience is helpful but not required. Register at Lake Rim Park by the day before the class. Space is limited.
8+; Sat., May 4; Tues., Aug. 20; 9 am-noon; $5
Lake Rim Kayak Tour
Lake tours are perfect for those trying kayaking for the first time and seasoned paddlers looking to relax on the water. All the equipment and basic instruction for beginners is provided. We recommend beginners participate in a lake tour before going on a kayak trip. Space is limited. Register at Lake Rim Park by the day before the tour.
10+ with a participating adult; $15, $5 if you bring your own boat
Sat., March 23: 2:30-4 pm
Thurs., April 4: 10-11:30 am
Sat., May 11: 2:30-4 pm
Fri., July 12: 5:30-7 pm
Fri., Aug. 2: 5:30-7 pm
Kayak across the salt marsh from Oak Island over to Sheep Island for some nature exploration. All equipment and transportation is provided. Provide your own kayak and transportation for a discounted rate. Space is limited. You must register at Lake Rim Park by March 20.
12+ with a participating adult; Sat., April 6; 7:30 am-6 pm; $50 or $20 with own boat
Explore the many scenic waterbodies in our area from the piedmont to the coast. All equipment and transportation will be provided. We recommend beginners participate in a lake tour before going on a kayak river trip to practice kayaking skills. Have your own boat? Trips are offered at a discounted price for those providing their own boat and transportation. Space is limited. Register at Lake Rim Park by the Wed. before the trip.
12+ with a participating adult; Sat.; June 15, July 6 and Aug. 17; 8 am-5 pm; $35 or $5 with own boat
Learn to Sail Weekend
Learn the fundamentals of sailing at Camp Don Lee located on the Neuse River. Instruction will include both classroom lessons and on the water practice sailing Flying Scots weather permitting. Transportation, most meals, lodging, and equipment will be provided. Lodging is bunkhouse style. You must register at Lake Rim Park by April 5.
14+ with a participating adult; Fri., May 17-Sun., May 19; $180
Whitewater Rafting Trip
Raft the Nolichucky River from North Carolina into Tennessee in the steepest river gorge east of the Mississippi. We will explore area attractions as time permits. Price includes rafting, lodging, transportation, and some meals. Call the park office for more information. You must register at Lake Rim Park by June 26.
12+ with a participating adult; Fri., July 26-Sun., July 28; $180
St. Patrick's Day Treasure Hunt
Grab your map and start looking for the clues to find the hidden treasure somewhere in the park. All participants will get a prize with special prizes awarded to the children who find the treasure. Call to register by March 14.
5-under yrs with an adult; Fri., March 15; 1-4 pm; $1 paid onthe day of the event
Easter Egg Hunt
Celebrate Easter at Lake Rim Park with an Easter egg hunt for the kids. Bring a basket and have fun as you help your young ones fi nd hidden Easter eggs while keeping your eye out for the "lucky egg." Special prizes will be awarded for different categories and all participants will leave with treats.
Sat., March 30; $1 paid on the day of the hunt
Hunt times: 5-under yrs: 2 pm; 6-8 yrs: 3 pm; 9-12 yrs: 4 pm
Family Night Out: Dinner and a Movie
Everyone is invited to Lake Rim Park for an evening of fun. The first part of the evening will feature hands-on exhibits, animals, games, and more! Food vendors will be on site with food to purchase. After the sun sets Operation Cease Fire will present a family friendly movie on their outdoor movie screen. Popcorn and soda will be provided free of charge during the movie while supplies last. Bring your chairs, blankets, family, and friends!
All ages; Fri., April 19; Exhibits 6-7:30 pm; Movie starts at 7:30 pm; Free
Special Populations Fishing
This event is held at the John E. Pechmann Fishing Education Center. All Equipment is provided. Please
bring at least one chaperone for every 2 participants. Pre-registration is required by calling Lake Rim Park. Space is limited.
All ages; Mon., April 29-Thurs., May 2; 9:30 am-noon; Free
Family Fishing Events
Families are invited to the John E. Pechmann Fishing Education Center to try their hand at fishing. Please bring your own poles and bait (no minnows). This is catch and release only.
Mother/Child Fishing: All ages; Sat., May 11; 9 am-noon; Free
Youth Fishing: All ages; Sat., June 1; 8 am-1 pm; Free
Father/Child Fishing: All ages; Sat., June 15; 9 am-noon; Free
Summer Has Split Fun Day
Come out to the park for a banana split party and some fun and games before school starts back. Contact the park for more details.
All ages; Fri., Aug. 23; 3:30-5 pm; $1