Naperville Riverwalk

188 W. Jackson Avenue • Naperville, IL 60540

Description


Naperville Riverwalk was built by residents in 1981 to commemorate the city's 150th birthday. Since then, it has become a focal point of the community and is recognized as one of the most beautiful spots in the Midwest, and has won state and national awards. Its covered bridges, fountains, landscaping, and distinctive shepherd's-crook light poles have become symbolic of Naperville's ties to its historic past as the oldest settlement in DuPage County. Visitors travel from far and near to enjoy the splendor of the Riverwalk and the quaint restaurants and shops in downtown Naperville. Known as the "Crown Jewel of Naperville" the Riverwalk attracts lunchtime strollers, families and early morning joggers. Stroll along the brick-paved winding paths of the Riverwalk, view the art pieces of the Century Walk, have a picnic at the pavilion, or enjoy a summer outdoor concert. A memorial to the victims of the September 11 attack is located on the Riverwalk's south bank, adjacent to City Hall.

Additional Pictures


Features


  • Grand Pavilion - Located on the Riverwalk's west end, the Grand Pavilion is a large, covered structure that is used for picnics, Naperville Park District programs, walk-a-thons, and many other events.
  • Jaycees Playground - This well-loved, ADA-accessible playground offers fun for children of all ages and abilities. Playground amenities include Braille and sign language panels, climbers, wiggle ladder, centipede climber, slides, swings and more.
  • Centennial Skate Park - Although skating is not allowed on the Riverwalk itself, enthusiasts can test their inline skating or skateboarding skills at Centennial Skate Park, located adjacent to the Riverwalk and Centennial Beach. This free, unsupervised facility includes obstacles such as quarter-pipes, grinding rails and fun boxes.
  • Centennial Beach and Grill - Centennial Beach is Naperville's historic "beach" that has been enjoyed by residents and visitors alike since 1931. Amenities include plenty of space for picnicking, zero-depth water entry with depths up to 15', a sand beach, water play features, diving board complex, slide and a sand volleyball court. Other highlights include updated locker rooms, family changing rooms, deck-level restrooms and lockers, an ADA platform lift and Centennial Grill, which offers a wide variety of food and beverage options.
  • Millennium Carillon in Moser Tower and Visitor Center - The Millennium Carillon in Moser Tower was built to commemorate the third millennium. The bell tower stands 158 feet tall with 253 steps and 72 bells. The largest bell, nicknamed "Big Joe" for Joseph Naper, weighs in at six tons. Directly adjacent to the tower is the Visitor Center (formerly known as the Netzley House) where guests can learn about the Carillon and area history through interactive exhibits. Tickets to tour the tower are available for purchase at the Visitor Center.
  • Rotary Hill - Rotary Hill is host to many special events year-round such as the Last Fling and Millennium Carillon concerts. The hill also is popular in winter months as a favorite sledding spot. Rotary Hill is located near Aurora Avenue adjacent to the Millennium Carillon in Moser Tower.
  • Riverwalk Eatery - Located near Rotary Hill, the Naperville Park District's Riverwalk Eatery is a convenient stop for a variety of food and snacks.
  • Paddleboat Quarry and Fishing Pier - Enjoy a Riverwalk paddleboat ride and explore part of the historic Naperville quarry. Four-person paddleboats are available for rental on all non-school days from mid-May to mid-September. Visit the Riverwalk Eatery for paddleboat rental information.
  • Shanower Memorial - Inspired by Naval Commander Dan Shanower, a Naperville native who died in the Sept. 11, 2001 attack on America, this memorial was one of the first in the U.S. dedicated to lives that were lost on that tragic day. The memorial includes more than 140 faces molded into a 48-foot retaining wall that were created by Naperville school children symbolizing the casualties on that day. An eternal flame also is present surrounded by a perennial garden.
  • Riverwalk Amphitheater, Millennium Wall and Labyrinth - This open-tiered area can accommodate up to 100 people and is often used for community events and performances such as library-hosted family story hours. It also is a popular rentable space for outdoor weddings. The new Millennium Wall features all the original inscriptions on bronze plaques, commemorating donors supporting City activities at the turn of the century. The Riverwalk Millennium Labyrinth is a replica of the Chartres Labyrinth in France and was designed to provide visitors with an opportunity to enjoy the twists and turns of this compact pathway.
  • Dandelion Fountain - Named for its shape, the Dandelion Fountain is surrounded by a picturesque scene of flowers and the nearby covered bridge, making it a perfect place to enjoy lunch or some quiet time. The fountain is located on Jackson Avenue at Webster Street.
  • Exchange Club Veteran's Plaza - Located just east of the Dandelion Fountain, this plaza is dedicated to the men and women who have served our country. A list honoring those Napervillians who made the ultimate sacrifice is located on the monument in the center of the plaza.
  • Horse Trough Fountain (White Plaza) - This large black basin, which is now a fountain at White Plaza off of Main Street, was once a horse trough at a downtown intersection during Naperville's early years.
  • Fredenhagen Park - Located at Washington Street and the DuPage River, Fredenhagen Park is the gateway to the east extension of the Riverwalk. The land for the park was generously donated in memory of Walter and Grace Fredenhagen by their children. Located in Fredenhagen Park, the Exchange Club Memories Fountain is surrounded by commemorative bricks and stones with messages including personal milestones, celebration of loved ones and even invitations of marriage.
  • Century Walk - Funded by Naperville's Special Events Cultural Amenities Fund and private donors, Century Walk features many unique pieces of major artwork that have been created as a tribute to Naperville's heritage.