Rock River Park Crawl–ideas for your 5k!

If you need some inspiration for where to complete your mileage for the 2021 event, have no fear–the Rock River Park Crawl list is here! All along the Rock River watershed, there are many options for exploring. From the headwaters in Theresa and Horicon, WI, to the mouth near the Mississippi River in IL, there are plenty of parks and natural areas to visit either alone or with family and friends… including Fido!

Welty Camp Wet and Wild week Last month, Welty campers investigated Turtle Creek, a tributary of the Rock River, at Sweet Allyn Memorial Park. For those who don’t want to get wet, there is a playground  and open shelters with picnic tables for visitors to use.

All along the Rock River watershed…


  1. Theresa Marsh Wildlife Area – Theresa, WI
  2. Horicon Marsh State Wildlife Area – Horicon, WI
  3. Horicon National Wildlife Refuge – Horicon, WI
  4. Harnischfeger Park – Ixonia, WI
  5. Kanow Park – Ixonia, WI
  6. Tivoli Island Natural Park – Watertown, WI
  7. Riverside Park – Janesville, WI
  8. Happy Hollow Park – Janesville, WI
  9. Riverside Park – Beloit, WI
  10. Sweet Allyn Park – Beloit, WI


  1. Macktown Forest Preserve – Rockton, IL
  2. Hononegah Forest Preserve – Rockton, IL
  3. Martin Park – Loves Park, IL
  4. Lowden State Park – Oregon, IL
  5. Lowden-Miller Forest – Oregon, IL
  6. George B. Fell Nature Preserve – Oregon, IL
  7. Lowell Park – Dixon, IL
  8. Sinnissippi Park – Sterling, IL
  9. Black Hawk Forest – Rock Island, IL
  10. George Skafidas Park – Rock Island, IL

Honorable Mentions: 

  • Robert O. Cook Memorial Arboretum – Janesville, WI
  • Lustig Park – Janesville, WI
  • Klehm Arboretum and Botanic Garden – Rockford, IL
  • Sinnissippi Mounds Historic Site – Sterling, IL

…there are many options for exploring.

Still need to sign-up? Click HERE to register for the Welty Rock River 5K.

Is your favorite park or hiking spot not on the list? Share it with us! We’d love to learn more about your neck of the woods. Send your pictures to OR use the hashtag #WeltyRockRiver5K in your social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.). We look forward to seeing you!

Darien Becker
Environmental Educatort, WEC