Recreation

Chester sits on the northern tip of the Shawnee National Forest and is surrounded by many lakes, rivers, ponds, creeks and parks. There are plenty of hiking, biking, and horse trails to keep the avid outdoorsman occupied. The bluffs and hills of the region also hide many cavernous wonders, rock formations, and petroglyphs from the original occupants hundreds of years ago. For the adventurous there are plenty of water ways for kayak excursions, and large lakes for fishing, boating, water skiing, and jet skiing. 

The vast number of parks throughout the area contain sporting fields/courts, paved walking trails, playgrounds, and shelter houses for casual dining or outdoor events. 

Within city limits, Chester residents have easy access to the Cohen Complex and Cole Park. The Cohen Complex features baseball, softball, and t-ball fields, soccer fields, tennis and pickle ball courts, and a 3,800 foot walking path with workout stations dotted throughout. At Cole Park a new Disc Golf Course provides challenging obstacles for all ages and skill levels and is home to a large playground, shelter houses, and trails.

The Randolph County State Recreation Area is just a couple miles out of town and provides fun for the whole family, camping, fishing, paddle boats, kayaking, hiking, playgrounds, shelter houses, and horse trails. There is something for everyone to explore at the "County Lake".

Children have the opportunity to participate in a variety of sporting activities with summer ball leagues, soccer camps, Stingers football and cheerleading, travel ball leagues, and venues that teach gymnastics, dance, karate, and more within a short drive. For children more interested in fine arts, the Mississippi Valley Art Guild holds frequent art instruction classes and contests, the Chester Public Library provides many enriching group and individual actives, and the music program in Chester is strong with children grades 5-12th grade participating in marching band. For musically talented adults the Municipal Band holds performances throughout the summer months and there are many singing groups at the local churches. 

We encourage you to explore the extracurricular and recreational activities at the links below, but implore you to visit them and experience them in-person.

Parks

 

Recreational Centers

 

Water Parks/Splash Pads

  • River Rapids Waterpark – Ste. Genevieve, MO

  • Perryville Splash Pad – Perryville, MO

  • Super Splash Park – Carbondale, IL

  • Farmington Water Park & Splash Pad – Farmington, MO

  • Cape Splash Family Aquatic Center – Cape Girardeau, MO

 

Hiking/Camping/Fishing

  • Randolph County State Recreation Area – (Rural) Chester, IL

  • Fort Kaskaskia – Ellis Grove, IL (Historical earthen forts and a great view of the Mississippi River and Kaskaskia Island)

  • Hawn State Park – Ste. Genevieve, MO

  • World Shooting and Recreational Complex – Sparta, IL

  • Perry County Community Lake – Perryville, MO

  • Kinkaid Lake – Murphysboro, IL

  • Baldwin Lake – Baldwin, IL

  • Lake Murphysboro - Murphysboro, IL

  • Rend Lake – Sesser, IL

  • Crab Orchard Lake – Carterville, IL

  • Pyramid State Recreation Area – Pinckneyville, IL

 

Gyms/Fitness Centers/Classes

Vasquez Fitness Center - Chester, IL

Juste Moi Yoga & Spa - Perryville, MO

Shooting Starz Gymnastics - Perryville, MO

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