There is a statue of Martin Luther King, Jr. in Marshall Park. Honestly, you're not going to find a ton of people hanging out in the park. It's just across McDowell Street from the Adam's Mark Hotel, but it's more than a few blocks removed from the business heart of Uptown and Trade and Tryon Streets. Plus, I personally, prefer a park to be more green. Marshall Park's focal area is mostly cement and appears a bit outdated to me.
Marshall Park is a peaceful place to relax if you're in Uptown. There are some fountains and benches and great views of the Uptown skyscrapers. It was featured prominently in one scene in the movie, "Shallow Hal."
Reedy Creek Park & Nature Preserve is a Mecklenburg County Park in northeast Charlotte. Initially, the land for the park was purchased by the City of Charlotte, but transferred to the county when the two parks departments merged. Later, it was separated into two parks - Reedy Creek Park and Reedy Creek Nature Preserve. The park has picnic shelters, athletic fields, disc golf course and other amenities. The nature preserve includes the nature center, two ponds, and 10 miles of hiking trails. The remains of the Robinson Rock House, dating from the 18th century, can also be found here. Altogether, the area protects almost 1000 acres of land and is a great natural oasis in urban Charlotte.
One of the oldest, and largest, parks in Charlotte, Freedom Park is located where the South End, Myers Park, and the Carolinas Medical Center (CMC) converge. Other than water rides and slides, it is home to just about everything which one can imagine in a public park. Well landscaped and maintained, Freedom Park is also home to a lot of trees, a giant lake, and plenty of space to spread out a blanket or pick a table for a picnic. ittle Sugaw Creek (pronounced Sugar by long time Charlotteans) runs through the park. It is lined by many benches which provide a great place to get away from it all (only a few hundred yards from it all) and enjoy a snack, a book, nature, or simply the company of your companion. If Charlotte had a Central Park (New York city style), this would be it. Her biggest problems are overcrowding at times and sometimes goose droppings, although this latter problem is under much better control than it was a few years ago (but I still do not walk barefoot). Crossing Sugaw Creek via an old suspension bridge you can reach the Children's Nature Museum, a terrific but little known venue for nature education for youngsters (and their parents). Lest you think that it is just a place for sitting, perambulating, biking, blading, or chilling, Freedom Park also has a playground, an old steam locomotive, several volleyball courts, soccer fields, tennis courts, basketball courts, and baseball/softball fields.
Freedom Park has not changed a great deal since I first played softball there as a teen but it has developed a bit, and mostly for the better. Its latest development is that it has become a stop on the Carolinas Thread Trail and received an installation by Daniel McCormick, a California waterscape sculptor. I confess that I do not understand his installation yet but am uploading a pic in the hope that others can help me.
North Carolina is home to over 120 species of trees, most of which are represented in the mountains. These trees are the masters that create the brilliant kaleidoscope of colors each Fall. The foliage is breathtaking from early October to early November.