This profile of Ann Arbor’s Rotary Club’s Centennial Playground at Gallup Park Playground is part of our 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 Rotary Club’s Centennial Playground at Gallup Park part of the Ann Arbor system.
Ann Arbor’s Rotary Club’s Centennial Playground at Gallup Park
Rotary Club’s Centennial Playground at Gallup Park – Playground Features
Playground Profile Last Updated: August 30, 2021
Playground Best for: Kids Under 5, Kids 5-8, Kids 8-12, Teens
Accessible Structure: Yes
Slides: 5, Straight Slide, Curved Slide, Roller Slide
Monkey Bars: Yes
Zip Line: No
Climbing Apparatus: Yes
Merry Go Round: Yes
See Saw: Yes
Natural Play: No
Ground Activities: Yes
Surface: Rubber Mats
Shade: Partial Shade – There are minimal trees, but there are some canopies to provide shade.
Seating: Yes, Benches, PIcnic Tables, and walls to sit on.
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Rotary Club’s Centennial Playground at Gallup Park – Park Details
Park Owner: Ann Arbor
Location: Gallup Park, 3000 Fuller Road, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
Parking: Parking Lot – The Centennial Playground is near the back parking lot. Follow the park road over the one lane bridge, through the next parking area, to the last parking area.
Bathrooms: Yes, Year Round
Walking Trails: Paved – Gallup Park has paved and gravel walking paths throughout. It also is part of the Washtenaw County Border2Border trail with connections to Parker Mill and
Water Play: None
Picnic Benches: Yes, At Playground, Nearby, Under Cover of Pavilion, Full Sun, Splinter Free (not made of wood)
Sports Fields: Open Fields
Rotary Club’s Centennial Playground at Gallup Park Description
With its prime location on the banks of the Huron River and Geddes Pond, Gallup Park is one of Ann Arbor’s premier parks. With multiple playgrounds, walking trails, boating, and fishing you could easily spend several hours at Gallup Park. We have split the playgrounds into 3 different profiles. Originally they were separate because they were added at different times, but they are so distinct they are each deserving of their own review.
The Rotary Club Centennial Playground at Gallup Park is a universal access playground right on the banks of the Huron River that opened in September 2017. Not only does Centennial Playground offer universal access with many features available to those with limited mobility, it appeals to a wide variety of ages. On my first visit to Centennial Playground, I saw a large group of middle or high school students who seemed to be having a great time. I have also seen many toddlers on the playground on subsequent visits.
I recently visited the playground and upgraded our photos. Unlike my original visit when the playground was packed with a school group, this trip was shortly before a storm hit so it was not very crowded.
Instead of one or two large structures, the Centennial Playground features a broken up play area. There are still two structures with slides, but there are also multiple climbing, rocking, and other elements for play. The picture below shows one of the structures with several other features. There are a rocking boat and monkey bars. The ground slopes up to the structure allowing universal access.
The second structure also has universal access with a ramp and features a roller slide. My daughter always loved roller slides. From the first platform, kids can climb up into the birds nest for the second slide.
While there are no trees to provide shade, the park includes several sail canopies to provide shade . Under this canopy are a 4 person see-saw and a “flying saucer” swing. Beyond is a crawl through area.
The park also includes a large sand area. The river edge can be fun to explore. However, make sure to use caution if you have a runner drawn to the water or are supervising multiple children. While there is a fence blocking direct access in parts, it is not completely enclosed and river access might be too tempting for your comfort level.
I captured the video below in advance of their Grand Opening in September 2017.
Events at Rotary Club’s Centennial Playground at Gallup Park
Beyond Rotary Club’s Centennial Playground at Gallup Park
You could spend an entire day at Gallup Park with 3 playgrounds, the canoe livery, a butterfly garden, and the trails. Don’t miss our profile of the other two Gallup Park playgrounds – the Livery Playground and the Bilik Orbach playground. The Livery Playground is a small play area adjacent to the canoe livery. It does not have a structure, but features a slide built into the hill with climbing rocks and crawl through tunnels. The Bilik Orbach playground is a small play structure located just over the one lane bridge. The Gallup Canoe Livery is a main draw to Gallup Park. You can rent a kayak, canoe, or paddleboat for exploring Gallup Pond. It is also the terminus point for river trips from Argo. Gallup Park also offers fishing with a youth fishing pond near the Centennial Playground. We have never gone fishing there, but it is always a great place to see ducks and geese. I caution against feeding the ducks and geese anything because they can get fairly aggressive. If you do feed them, bread is not good for them. A few options are oats, rice, birdseed, chopped lettuce, or sliced grapes.
Ann Arbor Playground Profiles
Have you been to Ann Arbor’s Rotary Club’s Centennial Playground at Gallup 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.