Fairhaven Park is owned and operated by the City of Bellingham Parks Department
“With over 136 acres to explore, Fairhaven Park is a great family destination…” Go to Bellingham Park’s Fairhaven Park page for more information about playgrounds, picnicking, parking, facility reservations, and other amenities for the public.
Recreation Northwest adopted it as a stewardship site in 2014. See our Trail & Wetland Boardwalk project page for details.
We are currently hosting Outdoor Recreation & Nature Education Programming in the park and woods.
See the RN Experiences Calendar.
Fairhaven Park Entrance Gateway
Update from Bellingham Parks: “This project involves the design and construction of a new entrance sign, which will also function as a gateway or landmark structure for this community park. The proposed entryway structure will be located at the main entrance to the park on Chuckanut Drive. Four design options have been developed for public review and comment on Engage Bellingham until March 31, 2022. Following public input, design options will be presented to the Bellingham Parks and Recreation Advisory Board, then the Bellingham Arts Commission for a final recommendation. The preferred design will then move forward for final design and permitting, with construction planned for Summer of 2023.” Fairhaven Park Entrance Gateway project page.
Fairhaven Park Map
Print out the 2015 Fairhaven Park & Forest Trails Map (PDF). This map was created to show where our Fairhaven Park Trail & Wetland Boardwalk was going to be located. The map includes the Hundred Acre Wood and surrounding park properties.
Trees of Fairhaven Park Map
Fairhaven Park History
“Fairhaven Park, located between Harris Avenue and Chuckanut Drive, consists of 16 acres. A five-acre donation by C.X. Larrabee and Cyrus Gates of Pacific Realty in 1906 was enlarged by another five acres from the Erastus Bartlett estate. Additional acreage was further donated by Pacific Realty, and the entire parcel was then deeded to the Park Board of the city in 1909.” Dig into FairhavenHistory.com for more background on the public property.
1906 – A five acre plot of undeveloped land south of Julia Ave. between 14th and 16th streets is gifted to the City by Pacific Realty Company, owned by Charles X. Larrabee and Cyrus Gates. Later, and additional 5 acres is donated by the Erastus Bartlett estate.
1909 – Deeds are accepted by Park Board Original development of the park was funded mostly by C. X. Larrabee and designed by John C. Olmsted
1918 – The Caretaker’s house at the rose garden was built with original floor plans based on Cyrus Gates’ Woodstock Farm Cook’s house.
1908-1922 – Fairhaven Park contained a small petting zoo.
1914 – The original pavilion was built. It caught fire in 1937 and was rebuilt in 1975, and again in 1982 after another fire.
1916 – Wading pool was installed outside the pavilion. It was replaced in 2003 by spray park.
1923-1928 – As was popular at the time, Fairhaven park was converted into an automobile tourist camp with a camp shelter and tourist camp house. The camp was located where the current main parking lot is.
1990-2007 – Caretaker’s house is leased for use as the Fairhaven Youth Hostel for young travelers passing through Bellingham.
2008-present – Rose garden and Caretaker’s house leased by the Center for Local Self-Reliance*.
Reference: A History of Bellingham Parks by Aaron Joy. As printed in the Trees of Fairhaven Park Map
2011 – 82 acres purchased by City of Bellingham. This area was known endearingly as the “Hundred Acre Wood” to the community. Past developers also referred to this property as Fairhaven Highlands or Chuckanut Ridge.
2013-14 – 111 acres are rezoned for public access and the area is considered to be part of the larger Fairhaven Park, integrating previously acquired City properties into one area.
2014 Recreation Northwest adopted Fairhaven Park as it’s stewardship project. See Trail & Wetland Boardwalk Project.
*Update: Center for Local Self-Reliance is now known as Chuckanut Center.