Trails and Open Space Programs 

4x4 Gnome

Bring the Gnome Home

Bring the Gnome Home is a hide and seek game that takes place on the public trail system managed by ACC Leisure Services Trails and Open Space. At the beginning of each month the gnome is hidden on one of our trails or properties. The gnome will be at least partially visible from the trail. When found, follow the instructions on the base of the gnome figurine. This informs the finder to return the gnome to Sandy Creek Nature Center to receive a prize. The prizes are donated by local Athens, Georgia businesses and are greater than $25 in value. 

If the gnome is not found within the first two weeks of the month, hints will be given through social media as to the gnome’s whereabouts. The Gnome must be returned by the last business day of each month to redeem a prize. If the gnome is not found within the month it will be hidden in a new location and a new prize will be offered. 

ACC Leisure Services staff and family members are not eligible to claim prizes.

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Night Hikes

Explore the trails at our parks by the light of the moon on these guided hikes. Enjoy activities that enhance the beauty and magic of our forest at night. Wear trail appropriate shoes and clothing. Please bring a small flashlight or headlamp; We will have a limited number of loaner flashlights. Pre-registration is required to ensure you have a spot on the hike. Ages 6 and up. 

Cost: $2 residents/ $3 non-residents

Register for Friday, September 4th

Register for Friday, October 2nd

Register for Monday, November 30th


4x4 Hike into History

Hike into History

Experience a glimpse into the past with Trails and Open Space.  Explore the trails at Ben Burton Park on this guided hike.  Learn about the history of the park and the role of the Middle Oconee River in Athens.

Cost: $2 residents/ $3 non-residents

Register Here


4 x4 Autumn Splendor Lakeside Loop Hike

Autumn Splendor Lakeside Loop Hike

 Celebrate the beauty of fall with an epic day hike.  Come along on with Trails and Open Space staff on this seven-mile trek around Lake Chapman.  Wear shoes for hiking and pack in essences for this 4-hour walk.  The fall color should be spectacular.

Cost: Free

Register Here


4x4 Greenway Fun Ride 2020

Greenway Fun Ride

Curious about the Greenway?  Want to get the family out on bikes for a short ride?  Join Trails and Open Space on this tour of our multi-use trail.  Our group will rally at the Sandy Creek Nature Center and ride the North Oconee Greenway to Dudley Park, before returning to the Nature Center.  All along this route we will stop to enjoy the sights and discuss points of interest.  This is a bring your own bike and helmet event.

Cost: Free

Register Here