Historic Parks

Willow Branch Park

2870 Sydney St.

Basketball Court



Acquired by the City in 1916 with the intention to provide recreation space further out in the neighborhood. This 15.61 acre Park is located along the course of Willowbranch Creek, at 2870 Sydney St.

Former City Councilman John J. Griffin led the drive to create the Park in 1916, and additional acreage was acquired southeast of Park Street between 1921 and 1925. Dr. Harold Hume donated 1700 azalea bushes around 1924 to beautify a portion of the grounds, while the Willowbranch Library opened at the Park in 1930; the creek was straightened and bulk-headed in 1934. Eventually four other small City parks/gardens were created from the Park property, one south and one north of St. Johns Avenue and two along Park Street (in 1950).

Since its creation in 1974, Riverside Avondale Preservation (RAP) has worked to preserve and improve the Park, along with the Willow Branch Park Improvement Committee that formed in 1999. Through the years it has remained one of the City’s most picturesque parks.

The AIDS Memorial mural within historic Willow Branch Park was officially unveiled on Saturday October 3, 2020. A private donor provided the funds for local artists Keith Doles, and his assistant Zac Freeman to transform the culvert across the creek into a fitting tribute. The 45 names featured on this mural represent local Riverside/Avondale residents lost to AIDS related diseases over the years. This mural is one of a series of projects within Willow Branch Park, championed by the AIDS Memorial Project of NE Florida, to help beautify this historic patch of greenery in an urban setting, as well as to establish a permanent memorial to the over 5,000 citizens of northeast Florida who lost their lives to this disease. Love Grove is the group’s annual tree-planting project within Willow Branch Park on Valentine’s Day.


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