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Fox River Sanctuary


  1. (C) Community Park
  2. (NR) Natural Resource Area
  • (C) Community Park
  • (NR) Natural Resource Area
  • 95.52 acres
  • Park contains acreage in more than one classification
This open space along the Fox River on the southwest side of the City contains mature trees, open meadows, prairie grasses, ponds, boardwalk, observation platform, arboretum, and designated lowland areas. The majority of it has been identified as a shoreline-wetland area in the State Wetland Inventory. In addition, a large portion of the sanctuary lies within the 100-year flood plain for the City. The sanctuary is bounded on the south by Sunset Drive and on the north by Prairie Avenue.

The E.B. Shurts Environmental Education Center was constructed as a joint partnership between the City of Waukesha, Department of Natural Resources, Waukesha Women's Club, the School District of Waukesha and the Fox River Development Board. The Center features classroom/storage areas, a meeting room, kitchen, an outdoor deck area, animal and plant life exhibits, a butterfly garden and a parking lot. Some of these facilities may be rented by outside groups for various functions. The School District of Waukesha uses the Center to program their Environmental Education curriculum and the City of Waukesha uses it for programs and recreational activities.

The City of Waukesha Fox River Recreation Trail head is located at the E.B. Shurts Building. Trail segments extend both north and south from this location. In addition to parking at E.B. Shurts, there is a small parking lot off of Sunset Drive adjacent to the Boardwalk.

The Glacial Drumlin State Trail enters the park on the west side under St. Paul Avenue and leaves the park at the intersection of Prairie and College Avenues. From this location the bicycle trail utilizes city streets before its connection to the New Berlin Trail at Lincoln Avenue extended. The Glacial Drumlin State Trail begins in Cottage Grove, near Madison.

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