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River Legacy Park, the crown jewel of Arlington’s park system, is located along the banks of the Trinity River in the northwestern section of Arlington. These 1031 acres forest floodplain park is Arlington’s segment of a visionary 75-mile greenbelt parkland from west Fort Worth through east Dallas. The natural, urban, hardwood forest includes 400 species of wildlife, 193 species of birds and 28 species of trees. River Legacy’s four-phases master plan, completed by Sasaki and Associates in 1986, calls for much of the park to be preserved for passive activities fostering an appreciation of the area’s plant and animal life. Presently, educational, leisure and recreational activities include nature study, bird watching, bicycling, jogging, picnicking and relaxing in a natural environment. If you are planning to visit to River Legacy Park, you’d better pack a lunch. With more than 1,030 acres of hardwood forest to explore that includes 400 species of wildlife, 193 species of birds and 28 species of trees, discovery is the name of the game. A true marriage of ecology and activity, the park was planned as an urban oasis where animals could live with minimal disruption from the hundreds of human visitors that pursue recreational activities every day. Popular activities include nature study, bird watching, bicycling, jogging, and picnicking. If you’re a mountain bike enthusiast, there are more than 10 miles of cross-country trails that, according to the Dallas Off-Road Bicycling Association (DORBA), are “some of the best around.” If kids are coming with you, then they are in for a real treat. The playground that was installed in 2012 has no equal in the United States. It was custom designed for the River Legacy Park and is connected to the surrounding trees. There’s even a life-size T-Rex dinosaur skeleton that younger children love to play on during their visit to the crown jewel of the Arlington Park system. Adjacent to River Legacy Parks is a 12,000 square foot nature center, River Legacy Living Science Center – feat.

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