Big Oak County Park

Big Oak County Park is a ninety acre site bordered on the west and north by SR1 (Exit 114 – South Smyrna Exit) and on the south by Big Oak Road (C.R. 325). It includes forty acres leased to the Delaware Aero Space Education Foundation for Space and Earth Science education and recreation. The location of the DASEF facility and Big Oak County Park’s free public access recreation and conservation demonstration areas make it a major regional outdoor destination. Big Oak is Kent County's third major park, joining Brecknock Park in Camden and Browns Branch Park. Kent County Levy Court dedicated Big Oak County Park and opened it to public use on September 30, 2006. Many recreation and conservation development and preservation activities have been underway since the spring of 2003. 

For information relating to the Delaware Aerospace Education Foundation (DASEF) please follow this LINK to visit the DASEF website.

Facility Amenities Include:

Public Restroom, Playground, Walking Trails, Pavilion, Softball Fields, Multi-Purpose Fields, Picnic Area, Outdoor Grill, Fitness Area, Bike Rack & Field Rentals.

Park Use Permits

To apply for rental, please follow these steps:

  1. Complete the rental application found on our website.
  2. Submit the filled-out application along with payment (rental fee + security deposit) to the P&R Office. It's preferable to use separate checks for payment.
  3. Ensure that the requested date(s) fall within three (3) months and are at least 15 days away for processing.
  4. If concessions are desired, include the Vending/Concession Permit Application with your Rental Application. There is no additional fee for this application.
  5. Permits will be authorized by the Parks and Recreation Director (or Director of Community Service if unavailable), who will then notify you of acceptance or rejection.
  6. Please remember to bring a hard copy of your permit to your scheduled event(s), even if it spans multiple days.


Concessions Permit

Waiver & Release of Liability Agreement



Big Oak County Park:

(a) Ball Fields, March 1 through November 15. No holiday weekend rentals.

[1] Weekends: $80/field/day.

[2] Full weekend: $150/field.

[3] Seasonal individual league rental for up to three weekday nights and not to exceed 12 weeks: $600/field.

(b) Multipurpose Sports Fields.

[1] Weekends: $80/field/day.

[2] Full weekend: $150/field.

[3] Seasonal individual league rental for up to three weekday nights and not to exceed 12 weeks: $600/field.

(c) Any individual sports field may be reserved weekdays for an hourly fee of $15 with a two-hour minimum.


Park Use FAQ

Frequently Asked Question on Permits:


My soccer team wants to practice once a week, for 10 weeks, for an hour, how much does that cost.


The weekday fee for field rental is $15 per hour, but there is a two (2) hour minimum. Each practice will cost you $30 x 10 weeks = $300. You are also responsible for a $300 security deposit.


I would like to reserve a ball field for tonight. How can I do that? A: By code, we cannot issue a rental permit inside of 15 days or outside of 3 months. We cannot help you for tonight. Q: I want to run an eight (8) week league in the fall; can you prorate the league fee?


The code does not allow for prorating; we suggest having a longer season for added benefit of your players.


I'm having a softball tournament and would like to have more bathrooms; how can you accommodate?


Per the "conditions and services" section on the permit application, you can request portable rest facilities through our office. There will be a charge that you must pay before your event. That charge will depend on your needs and our current contracted price with our vendor. No outside companies allowed on Park grounds.


Why do I have to get a permit for my game or event? I'm told the Parks are "first come, first serve" facilities.


Kent County Code requires "permits for set games". Playing league baseball, softball, football and other set games or sports in park areas except under official permit and upon the grounds provided for such purpose is prohibited. § 168-27.


I'm not interested in field rentals; I want to rent a pavilion for my son's birthday party, how much is that?


At this time, the Department does not issue exclusive use permits for pavilions, only sports fields.



General Park Rules

1. Motor vehicles restricted to designated parking areas only.

2. Drugs, alcoholic beverages, and weapons are prohibited.

3. No open fires.

4. No littering, all parks are carry in, carry out facilities.

5. Lewd behavior and obscene language is prohibited.

6. No person shall harm any animal, vegetation or structure.

7. Dogs must be on a connecting leash and not pose a threat to any person.

8. No auto repair or maintenance activities in parking areas.

9. Use of metal detectors and the removal of antiquities are prohibited.

10. Organized team and league practice by official Kent County permit only.

11. Use of park and parking lots is restricted to daylight hours only.

12. No golf or equestrian activities.

13. No solicitation or vending without official Kent County permit.

14. All persons using park facilities do so at their own risk.

15. No water activities unless permitted.

General Park Use Procedures

1. Kent County does not issue permits for private exclusive use of pavilions. All pavilions can be used by the general public and cannot be reserved, roped off, covered, decorated, etc. in advance of your intended use. Patrons cannot deny the use of pavilion tables if not immediately occupied. Seating is limited.

2. Sports fields may be rented for exclusive private use. Permits can be obtained through the Parks and Recreation Office. Permits cannot be issued inside of 15 days and outside of three months. Fee and security deposit apply.

3. Kent County provides pet waste bags at each of its parks. Pet owners are responsible for cleaning up after their pet(s) and removing waste from the park.

4. Kent County Parks are “carry-in, carry-out” facilities. Patrons are responsible for removing their trash when they leave the park. Small trash bags are available at each park for your convenience.

For specific park rules and use procedures, please call the Parks and Recreation Office.

Available Rental Facilities:

 Adult Softball Fields (3)

 Multipurpose Fields (4)

To request a facilities rental, please fill out a Parks Permit Application. Submit your application, along with a payment (rental fee+ security deposit) to the Parks & Recreation Office. Requested date(s) must be inside three (3) months out and no sooner than 15 days before to be processed. 

If concessions are requested, applicant must submit Vending/Concession Permit Application with Rental Application, there is no added fee for this application.

The Parks and Recreation Director will review applications and authorize permits and notify applicant of acceptance or rejection. Please bring a hard copy of your permit to your scheduled event(s), even if it is multiple days.

Kent County Park Trail Distances:

Big Oak Park Loop - 1.1 miles 


417 Big Oak Road, Smyrna 19977  View Map

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