Toledo Treasure: Pearson Metropark

Pearson Metropark located at 761 Lallendorf Rd Oregon, OH 43616.


Treasures you’ll find at Pearson Metropark…

Seasonal Fun: Fishing, Paddle Boats, Ice Skating, & Sledding

As you drive around the bend the first things to catch your eye is the beautiful lake, it calls to you. Take a walk around the lake and soak in the natural beauty (clean restrooms, flush toilets, and changing area is available).




The lake offers more than just breathtaking views and a therapeutic walk, you can also fish, paddle on the lake with one of the paddle boats, & ice skate in the winter months (when the ice is safe…and they have added lighting so you can skate until 8pm)

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The Ohio Division of Wildlife stocks the lake at Pearson with rainbow trout from the Castallia hatchery, providing a unique fishing opportunity to catch this cold water species in early spring. Fishermen also take catfish and other species. The lake’s stair-stepped shore makes it an accessible place to introduce children to fishing.

Paddle Boat Concession…..

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Pedal around the pond at Pearson. Charming pedal boats are available for rent, Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekends, noon to 7 p.m. Saturdays, Sundays and holidays.

Cost: $5 per half hour.


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This hill is marvelous for sledding in the winter months. And there are benches and a fire pit at the bottom where you can warmup in-between slides down the hill.

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Window on Wildlife


Sit down and cool off or warm up (depending on the season) while enjoying nature’s beauty and all Gods littlest creatures including, squirrels, chipmunks, a large variety of birds, and whomever else may pay a visit to the outdoor space while you observe from the comfortable climate controlled indoor room.


Johlin Cabin

See what life was like in the notorious Great Black Swamp in the mid-1800s. The Johlin Cabin at Pearson will take you to a time when life was hard, and a place where it was even harder.


Pioneers and soldiers who traversed the dark swamp described it in colorful terms, relating the rough roads where their wagons would get stuck in the muck, the fierce mosquitoes, deadly diseases and the work it took to clear a piece of ground. But they also spoke of the rich farmland that lay beneath the wet woods.

The Johlin Cabin was donated by the Johlin family of Oregon and moved about a mile into the park when Pearson was expanded in the early 2000s. Located at the north entrance to the park on Seaman Road, the cabin today is used for family programs where you might be invited to churn butter, plant crops or attend to other chores. (Source)

Catch some cabin fever and explore the Johlin Cabin from a new perspective. Spend an hour or an afternoon seeing the Johlin Cabin, activities for all ages with be provided; this is a free event, no reservations needed. (See Park events & calendar for Cabin openings)


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Children love this ah-mazing play-scape. Similar to the Farnsworth playground the Pearson playground also incorporates custom equipment that illustrates the environmental history specific to the area; the inspiration was clearly the Great Black Swamp.


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The play-space is filled with marsh themed attractions including a spider, frog, Lilly pads, interactive woodpecker, etc.



The playground includes a climbing wall, slides, soft rubberized surfacing, lots of swings, etc. and the best part, this play-scape was created with all children, with all abilities in mind. It is accessible to all.


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Beautiful rental facilities, baseball diamonds, soccer field, tennis courts, etc.


Oh, and we can’t forget the Trails!

If you are seeking a peaceful, serene, and scenic retreat from the ordinary look no further than the trails at Pearson Park. Take a relaxing stroll on the Black Swamp Short Loop Trail (0.8mi round trip, perfect for littler legs). Become one with nature on the Wood Thrush Trail. And if you are looking to get your workout in for the day then the Exercise Trail has your name written all over it (2.9mi round trip). You are welcomed to walk, jog, run, and even cross country ski on all the trails. Planning on bringing your bicycles? There are trails for bicycles too! (See map, link at the bottom of this page under DEETS)

You can do it all at Pearson! And the best part, after a day at Pearson; fishing, paddling, running, walking, picnicking, and playing on the playground the kiddos will be exhausted and begging to go to bed…everyone will sleep great! (And the older I get the more appreciative I am for an awesome night’s sleep, there really is nothing like it. ;)).


Hours: 7am-dark everyday

Address: 761 Lallendorf Rd Oregon, OH 43616

Ranger Phone: 419) 360-9178



Additional Toledo Treasures (click on images)

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Toledo Metropark Treasures: Wildwood Preserve Metropark

Wildwood Preserve Metropark located at 5100 W Central Ave, Toledo, OH 43615.

Treasures you’ll find at Wildwood Preserve Metropark:

Natural beauty and man-made elegance come together as one at Wildwood Preserve Metroparks. The 493-acre park is the former estate of Toledo’s Stranahan family. Surrounded by natural habit, the stately home, now called the Manor House, played important roles in Toledo—and the park district’s—history. (Source)

Manor House & Garden

The Manor House was built in 1938 by Champion Spark Plug tycoon Robert Stranahan and wife Page. Stranahan is a name deeply rooted in Toledo’s history.



As you walk up to the house you can imagine guests arriving at the estate in one of the Stranahans’ limousines, a butler would have greeted visitors at the large front door and showed them to the Gentleman’s Study or Morning Room where Robert or Page waited to welcome them.

Visitors who spent extended periods of time at the estate were further impressed by the amenities of the home.

  • Seven bedrooms were reserved for live-in maids, and all the main rooms in the house featured call buttons that ensured family and visitor needs were just an arm’s reach away.
  • Each guest bedroom included a walk-in closet, private bathroom and fireplace.
  • When guests left their rooms, house staff cleaned the fire places and restocked them with wood.
  • An underground fan and tunnel system leading to the banks of Ten-mile Creek delivered cool, fresh air throughout the home.

While the estate was certainly constructed to entertain and impress visitors, its most important function for the Stranahans was to provide a familial sanctuary. Robert and Page had two children of their own, but Robert had fivechildren and Page had two children from previous marriages. In constructing Stranleigh (Manor House Estate), they created a home large enough for their many children and grandchildren to visit them comfortably. Two large dormitory style rooms were included on the third floor and reserved exclusively for their grandsons and granddaughters.

Mainly for the children, a large in- ground swimming pool was installed in front of the home. The white cabana changing rooms stand to this day marking the location of the pool. Swimmers enjoyed high and low diving boards, lights for night swims and lessons from a swimming instructor.

For nearly 40 years Robert and Page Stranahan dedicated themselves to making the estate of their dreams a reality. They spared no expense constructing and maintaining Stranleigh. Given the lengths the Stranahan family went to create such a unique property, it is not surprising that nearly 65,000 Lucas County residents voted to preserve the estate in 1974.(Source)

I have so many fond memories of time spent at the Manor House with loved ones, touring the decorated Georgian colonial style house at Christmas, Tea as a child with my grandmother and mother, the annual Ice Cream Social on the front lawn, and the traditions continue with my children. In fact we spend so much time here in the summer we jokingly call it our summer house, haha! When you visit Wildwood Preserve Metropark do take the time to read the plaques located around the park and learn more about the history of Stranleigh.

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New Playground

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The new playground is all the rage right now (just opened this month!) and is filled with fun climbing apparatuses for the older kiddos, merry-go-round for all ages, xcelerator, a playground for the littlest park dwellers (toddlers and preschoolers), an expression swing (adult or older child sits face-to-face with baby/toddler), safety surfacing to cushion falls, and more.

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The one thing that was disappointing about the new playground is the swings, not all of our friends can play on it; we have friends with special needs who have to sit on the side and watch due to the fact that there isn’t an adaptive swing seat….also, we were disappointed that the new playground has less swings than the old one….we need more swings! (please 😉 )

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Window on Wildlife

The Window on Wildlife is housed in what were formerly the old Stables on the Stranahan Estate and is now called Metz Visitors Center (also houses the Park Information, Rentals, Programming, & Environmental Educational).

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It is a relaxing indoor space with large windows looking outside. There is plenty of seating to sit, relax, and observe wildlife and nature. My kiddos enjoy watching the birds, squirrels; chipmunks, turtles, etc. pass by the windows.

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(It should be noted that the Window on Wildlife is receiving a facelift, so the outdoor scenery might look a bit different when you visit). It is a must see whenever we visit, no matter the time of year, FYI; it is a great spot to stop and warm up in the winter months.


While you’re at the former Stables be sure to stop in the restroom and checkout the décor,

Trails & Boardwalk


What’s a park without trails, hiking, biking, dog walking, etc.? There are no shortages of trails at Wildwood; Meadow, Prairie, Floodplain, Woods Trails, and the Boardwalk offer such magnificent scenery, variety is the spice of Wildwood Preserve.

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No two trails are the same, each offers a different habitat to observe and explore. What’s more is the fact that each trail changes with the seasons, there is literally something new each day.


And there is so much more….

Do make certain you check out all the awesome programs offered at Wildwood for toddlers on up & the awesome events going on weekly, CLICK HERE for Calendar & Programing Eventswildwood_2016 046

Also be sure to check out Oak Grove Schoolhouse when you go!


Hours: 7am-dark everyday

Address: 5100 W Central Ave Toledo, OH 43615

Ranger Phone: (419) 270-7500



Also be sure to checkout…..(click on image)

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