Park District Policies
For complete information on St. Charles Park District policies, click here. A few highlights are included below:
As a St. Charles Park District facility, many Hickory Knolls programs and events will have Resident and Non-Resident pricing. A resident (RES) is defined as anyone living within the geographical boundaries of the St. Charles Park District who pays property taxes contributing to the District. The District reserves the right to request proof of residency. A non-resident (NR) is someone who lives outside the geographical boundaries and does not pay property taxes contributing to the District. For specific details, click here.
Not sure if you live within the boundaries?
The Park District’s boundaries are similar to those of St. Charles Township. The only area in the Township’s boundaries, not in the Park District’s boundaries, is the Sugar Ridge subdivision in South Elgin. The following areas are located outside of the St. Charles Township, but are included within the Park District’s boundaries:
Far East Side — Pheasant Run Resort & Convention Center, Pheasant Run Trails, and Pheasant Run Court.
Far Northwest Side — The northern portion of Thornwood Subdivision in South Elgin which includes the following streets: Courtland Drive, Oakview Court, West Ellington Court, and East Ellington Court.
Information on Park District registration more generally can be found here. We also accept on-site, day-of registration for many programs. If you want to register or have registration questions, contact us at 630-513-4399.
In late 2015, the St. Charles Park Board approved a new policy which strictly prohibits the use of tobacco and tobacco products in all park district outdoor parks, facilities, buildings and vehicles. This includes Hickory Knolls Discovery Center and all of its buildings, trails and facilities.
Code of Conduct
To ensure safe and enjoyable programs and facilities for all residents, the St. Charles Park District has the following Code of Conduct:
Participants in programs and using facilities shall:
- Show respect to all participants, staff, equipment, supplies and facilities.
- Refrain from using offensive or profane language.
- Refrain from aggressive behavior which could cause bodily harm.
The St. Charles Park District applies a caring, positive approach to discipline. The staff reviews rules with participants as necessary; however, the St. Charles Park District reserves the right to dismiss a participant whose behavior endangers the safety of themselves or others, causes property damage or exposes participants to offensive/profane language.
Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
For St. Charles Park District FOIA information and requests, click here.
Hickory Knolls Discovery Center Policies
In order to ensure the safety of visitors, wildlife, and staff, the St. Charles Park District has outlined the following guide for trail use at the Hickory Knolls Discovery Center and Natural Area:
- No motorized public vehicles allowed.
- All dogs must be on leashes.
- Bicycles are permitted on the trails but must yield to pedestrians at all times.
- Horseback riding is permitted on the trails but riders must yield to pedestrians at all times.
- Cross country skiing is permitted in the Hickory Knolls Natural Area. Please note, however, that the trails are not groomed so you may need to cut your own path.
- Please remove and dispose of trash in receptacles located at shelter areas.
- Report any safety issues or inappropriate behavior to Park Safety: 630-513-4343.
A copy of the Hickory Knolls trail map can be found here.
Hickory Knolls Discovery Center strives to be a welcoming environment to visitors of all ages and abilities.
Accessibility of Discovery Center
The Hickory Knolls Discovery Center is an ADA accessible building. There are designated handicap parking spaces near the entrance and handicap restrooms.
Accessibility of Trails and Walkways
The trails and walkways in the savanna near the building are wheelchair accessible. The remainder of the trails in the Hickory Knolls Natural Area are grass or rutted gravel. Unfortunately, we do not recommend these trails for wheelchair users. The St. Charles Park District does have trails in other parks and natural areas that are more wheelchair friendly.
The Hickory Knolls naturalists enjoy teaching visitors of all ages, ethnicity and ability. We have experience crafting custom programs for ESL, autistic, blind and other special needs groups. Please contact us directly at 630-513-4399 to request a custom program.
As part of the St. Charles Park District, Hickory Knolls partners with Fox Valley Special Recreation Association (FVSRA) to ensure program participants with special needs get the assistance they require. More information on the services offered through FRVSA can be found here. Please note, if you require special accommodations, such as a physical assistance, to participate in a program, please indicate your needs on the registration form completed at the time of registration or by notifying staff at 630-513-4399 at least two weeks in advance of any start date.