Welcome Visitors!   

Welcome from the Friends of Sweetwater Creek State Park!

You are about to discover Sweetwater Creek State Park, a peaceful tract of wilderness only minutes from bustling downtown Atlanta.

Explore with us... Wooded trails that follow the free-flowing stream to the ruins of the New Manchester Manufacturing Company. Beyond the mill, the trail climbs rocky bluffs to provide views of the beautiful shoals below. Discover hundreds of species of wildflowers, mosses and ferns or watch a deer leap through the bushes and out of sight. It's all part of the wonder that we know as Sweetwater Creek State Park.

The 215-acre George Sparks Reservoir is popular with anglers and provides a pretty setting for feeding ducks and canoeing. Fishing supplies and snacks are available in the park’s bait shop, while maps and park information may be found in the new Interpretive Center.




                                  
"Native American Heritage Hike"
Saturday, Aug 16, 2014 10 AM to 12 PM
Saturday, Aug 23, 2014 10 AM to 12 PM
 
Join us for a two hour moderate hike focusing on the first inhabitants of our area, the Native Americans or American Indians, as we explore the eastside which will include a visit to the "Indian Cave". Meet at the Visitor's Center. Reservations recommended. $5 plus $5 parking. 770-732-5871.

"Historic New Manchester History Hike"
Saturday, Aug 2, 2014 11 AM to 12:30 PM
Saturday, Aug 9, 2014 11 AM to 12:30 PM
Saturday, Aug 16, 2014 11 AM to 12:30 PM
Saturday, Aug 23, 2014 11 AM to 12:30 PM
Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 11 AM to 12:30 PM
 
This mile-long hike (easy to moderate) will lead to the five story ruins of the Civil War-era New Manchester textile mill and focus on the history of the Sweetwater Creek Valley. This historian or ranger-led hike will include going inside the ruins and seeing the lovely whitewater rapids which provide great photo opportunities. $5 plus $5 parking.              770-732-5871.

"Sweetwater Creek by Kayak"
Saturday, Aug 2, 2014 11 AM to 1 PM
Saturday, Aug 9, 2014 11 AM to 1 PM
Saturday, Aug 16, 2014 11 AM to 1 PM
Saturday, Aug 23, 2014 11 AM to 1 PM
Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 11 AM to 1 PM

Join us for a beautiful two-hour paddle through a peaceful stretch of Sweetwater Creek in a tandem kayak. There is an optional short hike to view the mill ruins and whitewater rapids. This outing is for adults (18 yrs. and older) who can swim and those 12 yrs. to 17 yrs. with a parent. Kayak, PFD, and paddle included. Register in advance. $23 plus $5 parking.
770-732-5871.

"Stargazer Paddle"
Friday, Aug 29, 2014 8 PM to 10 PM

Join us for this evening paddle on the Sparks Reservoir. We will watch the sun set and then search the sky for wonders like planets, stars, constellations, and shooting stars as night arrives. This program is for anyone over 17 who can swim. Binoculars recommended. Includes choice of canoe or tandem kayak, PFD, and paddle. Meet at the Bait Shop. $20 plus $5 parking. 770-732-5871.

"Ranger-led Lake Paddle"
Sunday, Aug 3, 2014 9:30 AM to 11 AM
Sunday, Aug 10, 2014 7 AM to 8:30 AM
Sunday, Aug 17, 2014 9:30 AM to 11 AM
Sunday, Aug 24, 2014 9:30 AM to 11 AM
Sunday, Aug 31, 2014 9:30 AM to 11 AM

Join us for a ranger-led, peaceful outing on the lake and up Beaver Creek. This trip is for those 16 years or older who can swim or children 6 years or older who can swim and are accompanied by an adult. Meet at the Bait Shop. Register in advance. $20 includes canoe or tandem kayak, PFD, and paddle. $5 parking. 770-732-5871.

"For Women By Women: Introduction to Kayaking"
Sunday, Aug 3, 2014 5 PM to 6:30 PM
Monday, Sep 1, 2014 10 AM to 11:30 AM

Join us for an introduction to kayaking on beautiful Sparks Reservoir. This program is for girls and women 16 years and older who are able to swim and are new to kayaking. Reservations are necessary. Meet at the Bait Shop. $20 plus $5 parking. 770-732-5871.

"Junior Ranger Day Camp Level I (Deer patch)"
Friday, Aug 1, 2014 9 AM to 2 PM

This camp is for children ages 6-12 who have not previously been in a Junior Ranger program. This program focuses on attaining the Level I Deer Badge. There will be a nature/history hike to the New Manchester Mill, a live reptile program, and nature-oriented arts and craft projects. Registration is necessary. Meet at the Visitor's Center. $25 includes Junior Ranger Book and Deer patch (lunch not included) $5 parking.
 770-732-5871.

"Twilight Lake Paddle"
Saturday, Aug 2, 2014 7 PM to 8:30 PM
Friday, Aug 8, 2014 7 PM to 8:30 PM
Saturday, Aug 16, 2014 6:30 PM to 8 PM
Saturday, Aug 23, 2014 6:30 PM to 8 PM
Saturday, Aug 30, 2014 6:30 PM to 8 PM

Join us for a peaceful, ranger-led outing as we watch for wading birds and enjoy the setting sun. This program is open to adults and children 6 years or older who are accompanied by an adult. You may choose a canoe or kayak for this trip. Reservations required. $20 includes gear. $5 parking.  770-732-5871.

"Sweetwater Creek Canoe Cleanup"
Sunday, Aug 3, 2014 10 AM to 1 PM

Join us in beautifying Sweetwater Creek as we pick up trash from the water by canoe and along the banks. Pre-registration is required and previous canoe experience is required for those in canoes. Meet at the Visitor's Center. $5 parking.  770-732-5871.

"Stand Up Paddleboard Tour"
Sunday, Aug 3, 2014 2 PM to 5 PM

Join instructors on the George H. Sparks Reservoir for an afternoon of Stand Up Paddle boarding (SUP). This program is intended for anyone 16 and over who can swim and is interested in SUP, and will include an introduction to the sport as well as a recreational tour. Includes board, PFD, and paddle Meet at the Bait Shop. Limited to 6. $20 plus $5 parking.  770-732-5871.

"Geology Hike"
Saturday, Aug 9, 2014 10 AM to 12 PM

Geologist John Johnston will lead a moderate 2-mile hike identifying rocks and explaining how and when they formed. He will also explain the tectonic events that forced the rock units to be faulted and folded. There will be a short visit inside the ruins of the Civil War-era New Manchester Mill. $5 plus $5 parking. 770-732-5871.

"A Walk in the Woods Through the Eyes of a Native American"
Saturday, Aug 9, 2014 10 AM to 12 PM

Join naturalist Jeremy Reeme on this walk through the woods as we look at plants and trees and other resources the Native Americans would have used. We will learn about edibles, medicines, cordage, pottery, shelter, clothing, and fire making. Closed-toe shoes required. Meet at the Visitor's Center. Reservations necessary at 770-732-5871. $10 plus $5 parking.  770-732-5871.

"Ruins to Rapids" Full Moon Hike"
Saturday, Aug 9, 2014 8:30 PM to 10:30 PM

This 1.5-mile hike is moderately difficult and goes inside the Civil War-era textile mill ruins of New Manchester and follows the lovely rapids (up to class IV) of Sweetwater Creek. A flashlight and sturdy, closed-toe shoes are required. No children under 6 or dogs. Meet inside the Visitor's Center. Register in advance. $6 plus $5 parking.  770-732-5871.

"Keeping it Beautiful"
Sunday, Aug 10, 2014 9 AM to 12:30 PM

Join other volunteers as we clean the park near the lake on the Northern Causeway. Wear old clothes, closed toe shoes, bring work gloves and your lunch. We will work from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and then break for lunch. Beginning at 2:00 p.m. we will offer two complimentary programs for volunteers: a History Hike or a Snakes Alive Program. Please meet at Picnic Shelter #1 in the Bait Shop parking lot. Water will be provided.
 770-732-5871.

"Full Moon Paddle"
Sunday, Aug 10, 2014 8 PM to 10 PM

Join us for a peaceful, ranger-led paddle on the Sparks Reservoir under the full moon. This program is offered to all adults (18 years and older) who can swim. You have a choice of a tandem kayak or a canoe. Meet at the Bait Shop. Reservations are required. $25 plus $5 parking. 770-732-5871.

"Mid-Week Wind Down Paddle"
Wednesday, Aug 13, 2014 7 PM to 8:30 PM

Join us for a peaceful paddle on the beautiful George H. Sparks Reservoir as the sun sets and we refresh ourselves in preparation for the end of the work week. You may choose a canoe or kayak for this program. Open to anyone 16 or older who can swim and children 6 or over who can swim and are accompanied by an adult. Register in advance. $20 includes boat, PFD and paddle. $5 parking.  770-732-5871.

"Snakes Alive"
Sunday, Aug 17, 2014 2 PM to 3 PM

Join Park Manager David Jordan in this up-close hour featuring live, non-venomous snakes. We will learn all about our local snakes, including the venomous ones, as well as the natural history of snakes and all about their behavior and senses. Meet at the Visitor's Center. $5 plus $5 parking.  770-732-5871.

"Introduction to Bird watching Hike"
Wednesday, Aug 20, 2014 8 AM to 10 AM

This field trip is designed for anyone interested in learning more about birds, the important habitats critical to some species, and organizations like the Audubon Society which are dedicated to bird conservation. Meet at the park's Interpretive Center. $5 parking.
770-732-5871.

"Art in the Park"
Friday, Aug 29, 2014 10 AM to 12 PM

Bring your canvas and paint, clay, camera, or oil pastels for exclusive access to the interior of the five-story New Manchester Mill. Create your own artwork while you enjoy beautiful views of the Sweetwater Creek rapids alongside the dramatic mill ruins in the warmth of summer. Reservations required. $10 plus $5 parking.  770-732-5871.

"Eastside Evening Hike"
Sunday, Aug 31, 2014 7 PM to 9 PM

Join us for a strenuous, 3 mile evening hike to the beautiful east side of the park where we will climb the East Ridge, visit the "Indian Cave" and hike to other seldom-visited areas. This hike is open to anyone 16 years and older. Closed-toe shoes are required. Dogs not permitted on this hike. Meet at the Visitor's Center. Reservations required. $6 plus $5 parking. 770-732-5871.

"Photography 101 (Class 1-Lighting)"
Sunday, Sep 7, 2014 11 AM to 1 PM

Join Georgia State University professor Nancy Floyd, the artist-in-residence at Sweetwater Creek, as we learn about lighting. You don't need an expensive camera to take good pictures. A simple point-and-shoot will do. Bring your manual. $15 plus $5 parking.
 770-732-5871.

"Sweetwater Creek Cleanup -- Your State Park Day"
Saturday, Sep 27, 2014 9:30 AM to 1 PM

Join park staff and "Friends of Sweetwater Creek State Park" volunteers as we clean up the Sparks reservoir and hiking trails. We will be cleaning the lake by canoe and kayak and also from the banks. You will also have an opportunity to clean the banks of lovely Sweetwater Creek. Bring gloves and pickup tools. 770-732-5871.

    






Park Hours: (7:00am - Sunset)
Visitor Center/Office Hours: (9:00am - 5:00pm)
Trails close at dark; other areas close at dark if not in use.
$5 parking. Annual passes available.

FACILITIES:
•  2,549 Acres
• 215-Acre Lake
• Visitor Center/Museum/Gift Shop
• Conference Room (seats 40 / weekday $85, weekend $100)
• 8 Picnic Shelters ($70)
• Group Shelter (seats 150, weekday $175, weekend $225) and BBQ Pit
• 2 Fishing Docks
• Bait Shop (seasonal)

 
ACTIVITIES:
Hiking - 9 miles of trails, closed at dark, ranger-led educational hikes
 • Lake and Creek Fishing – boat ramp, electric motors only
• Canoe and Kayak Rental (seasonal)
• SUP (Stand Up Paddle) board rental (seasonal)
• Fishing Boat Rental (seasonal)
• Pedal Boat Rental (seasonal)
• Picnicking
• Geo Caching
• Ranger Guided Interpretive Programs
• Birding
• Playgrounds
• Weddings (park approval required)
• Family Reunions (park approval required)


Note: For Forms & applications see: Applications & Forms




 
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