Playgrounds are open. We encourage families to keep social distance and wear masks when distance can't be kept. Amenities like bathrooms and water fountains may not be available due to current restrictions.
This profile of Ypsilanti’s Riverside Park Playground is part of our Tuesday Playground Profiles Series. Are you interested in sponsoring the series? Contact us for details.
Each week Ann Arbor with Kids is profiling a different playground in the Ann Arbor area including Ann Arbor, Saline, Ypsilanti, Dexter, etc. Today we are profiling Riverside Park in Ypsilanti.
Ypsilanti’s Riverside Park
Riverside Park – Playground Features
Playground Profile Last Updated: August 20, 2019
This playground profile was collected prior to our new format which did not gather all of this data. We have included our best guess in the conversion and will add them to our list to be updated. Information most likely to be incorrect is number of slides and structures
Accessible Structure: No
Slides: 4, Straight Slide, Tube Slide, Racer Slide
Monkey Bars: No
Zip Line: No
Climbing Apparatus: No
Merry Go Round: Yes
See Saw: No
Swings: 2 traditional swings, 0 baby swings, 0 parent/baby swings, 2 adaptive swings, 0 tire swings
Ground Activities: Yes
Surface: Wooden Mulch
Shade: Partial Shade – Some afternoon shade
Riverside Park – Park Details
Park Owner: Ypsilanti
Location: 5 East Cross Street, Ypsilanti, MI, USA
Parking: Parking Lot – Parking lot on Cross St. Easily walkable from other Ypsi parking lots and street parking
Bathrooms: Port a Potty
Walking Trails: Paved – A paved walking trail circles Riverside Park and connects by the “tridge” to Frog Island Park. Stairs also connect the park to Depot Town, Michigan Avenue, and Huron St.
Water Play: Natural Water – The Huron River is fairly shallow in parts of Riverside Park. We have picked rocks from the river to use for kids craft activities at YpsiFest
Sports Fields: Open Fields
Riverside Park Description
Ypsilanti’s Riverside Park added the Liz Dahl MacGregor playground in December 2018. We did not know about the new playground until a few weeks ago. We were walking along Cross Street during the Ypsi Grub Crawl and I could see a new playground structure.
The Liz Dahl MacGregor Playground is a great addition to Riverside Park and is easily accessible from both Downtown and Depot Town. It makes a great stop when you’re out to dinner or at the Farmers Market.
The structure has 4 slides and several climbing features. My daughter enjoyed the “hammock”. She was able to walk across it, but it is probably easier to crawl.
The playground is universal access with ramps onto the structure and activities you don’t need to climb to reach. We liked the spinning kaleidoscope that left patterns on the ground.
The rocking boat can also be reached from the ramp. The same style of boat is at Ford Heritage Park in Ypsilanti Township and my daughter has always loved it.
There are also two musical xylophones that the kids can play. Smaller children may need to be lifted up to reach these.
The first thing my daughter saw at the playground was the merry go round. Unlike traditional merry go rounds, this one has molded seats. It was a little harder for her to start and climb in, but it is definitely a safer option for younger kids when someone else is pushing the merry go round.
Aside from the playground, Riverside Park has wide open space and a walking path along the river. You can also walk across the “tridge” to Frog Island Park.
Events at Riverside Park
Riverside Park hosts many premier Ypsilanti events including YpsiFest, Fire Truck Muster, and Fall Huron River Day.
We have loved YpsiFest since its days at Ypsilanti Heritage Fest. There are always great kids activities and performances.
Fall Huron River Day is a relatively new event, and hopefully it will return post-pandemic.
We have never made it to the Fire Truck Muster, and it is not on the 2021 calendar. Hopefully it will return post-pandemic.
They also host concerts, holiday events, and more.
Beyond Riverside Park
Riverside Park is in the heart of downtown Ypsilanti straddling the space between the Michigan Avenue corridor and Depot Town.
The Michigan Firehouse Museum is across from the parking lot entrance to Riverside Park.
Riverside Arts Center on N. Huron St backs on the park and has stairs to the park. They hold creativity classes for kids, theater, and more.
The Saturday Ypsilanti Farmers Market is on Depot Street from May through October.
Ypsilanti has lots of great dining options that are convenient to Riverside Park. If you are looking for takeout to bring to the park, I suggest Ma Lou’s Fried Chicken. Or, stop by our personal favorite Go! Ice Cream for a treat after your playground visit.
Other restaurant options:
Ann Arbor Playground Profiles
Have you been to Ypsilanti’s Riverside Park? If so, what is your favorite part?
Find more Ann Arbor area playgrounds in our Playground Profile series. Then, plan your own playground tour.