Playground Profile: Deerpath Park (Vernon Hills)


Deerpath Park Vernon Hills

I spent my first 4 years living in Vernon Hills without stepping foot in Deerpath Park, a true gem in our community. Despite the fact that we are park people, I didn’t really understand how large and special Deerpath Park is.  At my son’s first 4 year old soccer practice, I ventured down a neighborhood street, to a parking lot tucked at the end of the road, and had my first introduction to the vast Deerpath Park.

Deerpath Park has three separate playgrounds along the 1.5 mile paved walking/bike path. The most unique and memorable playground is in the middle of the park, known as Kids Castle, or just Castle park, as most of my friends call it.


It’s an enormous structure which looks like a castle, filled with hiding nooks, interesting climbing challenges, as well as swings and a tot lot, constructed completely out of wood.


My elementary school children love castle park, it’s a fantastic place to play hide and seek with friends, and explore and climb in new ways. It also has many swings plus the fastest tire swing around, which they would like me to spin them on for hours. As for the tot lot section, it’s very cute. Features include a Vernon Hills Fire Department Truck built into the playground and a small slide into a sand area. One drawback to the castle park for toddlers is that you have to walk through the larger castle park to get to the tot lot in the back.




Most toddlers I know (including my own), are not content staying in the tot lot area, and are running off and climbing on some very tight and challenging spaces. I will not take my 2 year old twin toddlers to this park without another adult, and even then, it’s somewhat exhausting to chase them through the complex structure. To access the Castle Park, you have to enter the park from the parking lot off of Cherokee (near the tennis courts) and walk about 500 feet down the paved path.


{Editor’s Update: The beloved Kids’ Castle is scheduled for demolition in October 2015 with a new playground to be unveiled in May 2016}

At the northern end of the park is another playground structure, commonly known as Warrington Park, because it’s located at the end of Warrington Drive, with a parking lot. The playground equipment was just replaced last year and it has some interesting and colorful new structures, including a double see saw which I have never seen before.


In addition, there is a separate play area for toddlers with a small slide and a truck structure to climb on, which is well shaded.


At the southern end of the park, there is a third playground, which provides yet another different climbing structure and slides.  It’s well shaded, but does not have parking or restrooms.  Currently, the playground is not easily accessed to due drainage work, which has the main path closed nearby.

Deerpath park provides so many different play experiences in one beautiful setting. If you go with older kids, you can pack a lunch and snacks and stay the whole day exploring.  Deerpath Park is tucked between Phillips Road to the North and Route 45 to the south.  To access the park by car, you take Deerpath Drive to either Cherokee (for Castle Park) or Warrington Road until they end at parking lots.

We love the Kids’ Castle in Deerpath Park so much, we have designated it as Tour Stop #4 on the Little Lake County Playground Tour!   Come out to play with us on Wednesday, July 29th from 9:30 – 11:30 am.  

This area favorite is slated for a complete overhaul, so come on out to play with us one last time and bid a fond farewell to the Kids’Castle!

Little Lake County Playground Tour Stop #4: Kids’ Castle at Deerpath Park
East of Deerpath Drive between Phillips Road to the north and Route 45 to the south in Vernon Hills.  
To access the park by car, take Deerpath Drive to  Cherokee Road east till it ends at the parking lot.
Wednesday, July 29, 2015
9:30 -11:30 a.m

Help us bid a fond farewell to the Kids’ Castle playground!

little lake county playground tour

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Playground Tour 2015


About Maureen Collier 30 Articles
Maureen calls Vernon Hills home and four children call her “Mom.” With her children (boy 2/06, girl 9/07 and twin boys 6/12), Maureen is a busy Stay-At-Home Mom, who dedicates herself to modeling an active lifestyle for her family.

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