eBird Bar Charts by Season
Tips for birding Island MetroPark
There are often Black-crowned Night-Herons roosting at the southern tip of the lagoon where it splits off from the main part of the Greater Miami River. Just downriver from there is a small falls area with lots of waterfowl and some variety of gulls. An abandoned home across the river from the island has an active chimney swift roost.
About Island MetroPark
Island MetroPark was formerly known as the White City Amusement Park in the late 19th century. The park had a dance pavilion, amusement rides, canoe lockers, refreshment stand, and other recreation features. By 1907 the park had become run down and not well maintained. In 1910, Dayton started leasing the parkland for $3,000 a year, and in 1911, a recommendation to buy the land was proposed in the report submitted by the Olmsted Brothers.
The Great Flood of 1913 left the Dayton area incapacitated, knocked out the bridge that allowed passage, and damaged a number of buildings at the White City Amusement Park. Because of the park was located in a flood area there was initially no redeeming quality to replace the bridge that connected the park at Helena Street to the Main St. car line.
Then, on July 13, 1913, the Dayton Canoe Club held its first regatta. D.W. Begley the owner to the boathouse across from White City park ferried spectators across the river free of charge. Consequently, after two more successful regattas’ that summer the Dayton city officials decided to rebuild White City. On June 20, 1914, the park formally opened as Island Park. The park became an ideal location in the coming years for programming that included bathing, picnicking, canoeing, boating, dancing, ice skating, water carnivals, evening band concerts, and general recreation.
In 1940, a Bandshell was erected and opened under the name of the Leslie L. Diehl Bandshell where programmed concert attendance totaled 80,000 in 1943. Dayton official annual reports reveal a pattern of heavy use and evolution of the park and it shows that through war and peace, prosperity and urban challenge, Island Park remained a focal point of Dayton recreation for decades.
From Island MetroPark webpage
Restrooms at locations identified on Island MetroPark map.