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Dorrance Park

 

307 Agnes Street, Port Byron, Illinois 61275
(309) 203-1404

Hours of Operation: Sunrise to 10:00PM

Dorrance Park is the smallest of the five Rock Island County Forest Preserves with 81 acres. Dorrance provides excellent habitat for wildlife and is a wonderful spot for bird watching.  The Upper Rock Island County Recreation Association, URICRA, uses Dorrance Park for some of its programs, for more information about URICRA click here. Some of the featured amenities are:
  • Three baseball diamonds
  • One peewee ball field
  • Hiking trail
  • Shelter and playground

Dorrance Park History

Nathaniel Dorrance, the original owner of the land and the park’s namesake, willed the property to the Port Byron Academy. Upon the dissolution of the Academy, the land went to Dorrance’s heir, his grandson Clarence Stephens. Stephens donated the land to the Village of Port Byron for the Port Byron High School to use as an athletic field.

In 1944, the Village of Port Byron deeded the property to the Rock Island County Forest Preserve District with the provision that the County maintain the land for its continued use by Port Byron High School. The High School has since closed, but Dorrance Park remains under the auspices of the Rock Island County Forest Preserve District. In 1944, a $225,000 Forest Preserve bond issue allocated $35,000 for improvements to Dorrance Park. Between 1945 and 1959 amenities such as, comfort stations, parking areas, picnic facilities with tables and fireplaces, roads, baseball diamonds, and a water system were added to the park. In the late 1970's lights were added to two of the three baseball diamonds.