Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use parks during thunderstorms?

Lightning Prediction System

The ThorGuard Lightning Prediction System is installed in five zones, at 19 sites throughout the Park District. Each zone has a base unit with sensors that set off warning sirens at the base unit and its’ satellite stations in surrounding parks. The lightning prediction sensor at each of the five zones operates independently of the other. Therefore, it is possible that conditions and alert signals can vary from one end of the community to the other (zone to zone). The Doerhoefer Park zone includes Whitlock Park. The Lincoln Center zone includes Constitution, Ebersold, Gilbert, Hummer, Memorial, Patriots, Randall and Washington Parks. The McCollum zone includes Concord Square, Mar-Duke Farm, O’Brien, Powers and 63rd & Brookbank Parks. The Golf Course zone includes Walnut Park and Lyman Woods operates on its own zone. Fishel Park has a seperate WeatherBug lightning detection system.

The system is active from 8:30 am to 7:00 pm beginning in March; except at Lyman Woods, Lincoln Center, Hummer, Gilbert, Memorial, McCollum and Doerhoefer parks where the system will remain active until approximately 11:00 pm in conjunction with lighted activities and athletic fields.

When the ThorGuard system predicts lightning in the area, an eight-second warning horn will sound and a warning strobe-light will activate at the base and each satellite park in the zone. Anyone who hears the horn or sees the strobe-light should seek shelter immediately. All activities at the park should stop. The strobe-light will continue to flash until the all clear signal is received. After the danger is reduced, an "all clear" signal of two (three at the golf course) short horn blasts will sound and the strobe light will turn off. The Park District urges you to use common sense when recreating outdoors in inclement weather.

How are the pictures taken of participants used?

Photos and video footage are periodically taken of people participating in Downers Grove Park District programs, events and activities, attending a class or event, or using District facilities or property. Please be aware that by registering for a program or class, participating in an activity, attending an event, or using District facilities or property, you authorize the District to use these photos and video footage for promotional purposes in District publications, advertising, marketing materials, brochures, event flyers, social media (including Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, and other social media sites operated by the District), and the District’s website without additional prior notice or permission and without any compensation to you. All photos and videos are property of the District.

How do I reserve a park or field?

Reserve a park site by completing and submitting a Park Permit Request form available at the Recreation Center, 4500 Belmont Road, Lincoln Center, 935 Maple Avenue, or download the permit form here. Outdoor facility permits are required for groups of 20 or more one week in advance of the permit date. Any permit request of 100 or more attendees requires a special event permit. Groups with an approved permit shall have priority use of the park site. Resident groups may submit requests for park pavilions beginning the first business day in Feb. Non-resident groups may submit requests for park pavilions beginning the first business day in March. There is a fee for picnic site and park facility usage. Alcoholic beverages are not permitted in any park district facility. Restrooms are available from mid-April through late October.

For field rentals, please call the Recreation Center at 630.960.7250.

Do you sell gift cards?

Give a gift of recreation! Downers Grove Park District offers gift cards in any amount and can be used for hundreds of different classes, activities and events. Purchase gift cards year-round at Lincoln Center, 935 Maple Avenue, the Recreation Center, 4500 Belmont Road and during the season at the Golf Club, 2420 Haddow Avenue. Call 630.963.1300 for more information.

Can we feed the geese and ducks?

While we encourage you to enjoy our park wildlife, we also ask that you let them find their own food sources. Because food supplied by people is easy for birds to obtain, ducks and geese lose their natural migratory instincts. This eventually leads to overpopulation and makes these creatures more susceptible to disease and predators.

I've seen vandalism in a park or playground, what do I do?

Prevent Senseless Damage

In an effort to reduce and eliminate senseless damage caused by vandalism, Downers Grove Park District encourages you to report any information you have about individuals causing damage to District property. CALL 630-929-3136

$ Reward $

If the information you provide leads to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrator or conspirator, you may be eligible for a reward of $5,000 for vandalism in excess of $2,500.

Confidential Communication

All communications between the Vandalism Tipster and Downers Grove Park District are strictly confidential. CALL 630.960-7255.

Can I use a boat or kayak on Barth Pond?

Canoes, kayaks, rowboats and other non-motorized watercraft are allowed on Barth Pond at Patriots Park, 55th Street and Grand Avenue. Please follow all posted boating rules.

How do I register for a Park District Program?

4 Easy Ways to Register!


Complete your registration form and submit credit card payment online by CLICKING HERE! The electronic form substitutes for and has the same legal effect as the original document.

Drop Off

Bring your completed registration form and payment (cash, check, money order, Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover) directly to:

Lincoln Community Center
935 Maple Avenue, Room 204
Downers Grove, IL 60515-4997
Registration Office Hours:
Monday-Friday: 8:30am-6:00pm
Saturday: 8:30am-12pm 

Recreation and Fitness Center
4500 Belmont Road
Downers Grove, IL 60515
Registration Office Hours:
Monday-Friday: 8am-8pm
Saturday & Sunday: 8am-3pm

After Hours:For convenient after-hours drop-off, a mail slot is located in the door at the top of the stairs at the north end of the Lincoln Center, and outside the Recreation Center to the left of the main entrance.

Mail In

Mail your completed registration form and payment (check, money order, Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover) to:

Lincoln Community Center
935 Maple Avenue, Room 204
Downers Grove, IL 60515-4997

Recreation and Fitness Center
4500 Belmont Road
Downers Grove, IL 60515


Fax your completed registration form and credit card payment to: 630.963.5884. The facsimile form substitutes for and has the same legal effect as the original document.

Phone registrations will not be accepted

Registration Guidelines

We encourage you to enroll in programs at least one week prior to the start date. Programs with low enrollment may be canceled.

Unless registering in person, participants should assume they are enrolled in their first choice unless otherwise notified by Park District staff.

List your additional program choices so that you may be placed in the next available class if your first choice is filled. You will be placed on a waiting list for your first choice if all of your choices are filled.

Checks or money orders may be made payable to the Downers Grove Park District.

There is a $25 service charge for returned checks.

Age Criteria

Appropriate age levels are established by our staff of professionals to ensure a rewarding experience for all children. Children must meet the age requirements of a class within one week after the starting date of the class, with the exception of the preschool.

Recreation Refund Policy

A refund for general recreation programs will be issued or placed on your account when a completed Refund Request Form is submitted 72 hours prior to the first class meeting and will be subjected to a 10% service charge. A prorated withdrawal refund will be issued in cases of illness or injury when accompanied by a doctor's note. Refund Request Forms are available at both the Lincoln Center and the Recreation Center facilities. Forms can be dropped off or faxed to either facility and will be processed based on the date received.

When is the next program guide available?

Our program guides are published three times a year. Our Spring/Summer/Camp guide is delivered to homes around the last week of February, the Fall guide is delivered the last week of July and our Winter Guide is delivered on Thanksgiving week.

When are the Open Gym dates and times?

Open Gym schedules for basketball, vollyeball, pickleball and batting cages are posted on our website each month. 

View the calendar