Passive Parks Department

The Beaufort County Passive Parks Department manages and operates over 13,000 acres of property, including pocket parks, nature preserves, historic sites, an interpretive center and event facilities. We are growing every year, so please check back regularly for updates on new parks and programs.


The Beaufort County Passive Parks Department wants to improve the quality of life in Beaufort County by offering accessible nature-based passive recreation and environmental education opportunities for the residents and visitors of Beaufort County.


To offer a clean and safe nature-based visitor experience where all feel welcome; and to be distinguished as having a nationally accredited environmental education program.


Passive Parks Director - Stefanie M. Nagid, (843) 255-2152,

Passive Parks Naturalist - Destiney Rains, (843) 255-7309, 

Passive Parks Ranger - Bradley Owens, (843) 255-2150,

Office Location: 124 Lady's Island Drive, Beaufort, SC 29907


The Passive Parks Department was created in 2018 as a new Beaufort County program due to the County's years long acquisition of open space and the public's interest in access to those properties. Passive park properties are acquired through the Beaufort County Rural and Critical Lands Preservation Program and then managed and operated by the Passive Parks Department with three achievable goals: sustainability, multi-use and revenue generation. The primary goal is to promote sustainability and safeguard the conservation values and natural resources from being compromised. That goal is always at the forefront when determining multi-use passive recreation and revenue generation possibilities on passive park properties.

What is a Passive Park?

Passive parks are fee-simple purchased properties acquired through the Beaufort County Rural and Critical Lands Preservation Program that are intended to provide open space and/or passive recreation to the residents and visitors of Beaufort County.

Passive recreation is nature-based outdoor recreation focusing on the enjoyment of one's natural surroundings. The development of nature-based activities on passive park properties may include hiking, fishing, camping, hunting, boating, gardening, bicycling, nature studies, and visiting historic sites.


Policies and Rentals


Passive Parks Ordinance

Beaufort County Ordinance 2018/53, Chapter 91 of the Beaufort County Code, provides all rules and regulations governing passive park properties.

Passive Parks Work Plan

The County adopted work plan for passive park properties is updated on a regular basis as new properties are acquired or as project priorities shift. The work plan's associated priority table provides a summary of information about each property and their priority for future public access.


Geocaching is a hide and seek outdoor recreational activity where participants use a GPS devise to find a "cache". Geocaching is similar to letterboxing, which uses landmark clues and references to find the cache. A typical cache is a small waterproof container with a logbook and/or trinket, such as a small toy or stamp. Geocaching and letterboxing are allowed on County passive parks that are open to the public with an approved permit.

Click here to download the geocaching/letterboxing permit application.

Trail Wheelchair Reservation

Beaufort County is happy to be able to provide all-terrain wheelchairs available to the public for FREE! A trail wheelchair can be reserved by clicking here to download, complete and provide the reservation and waiver form to the Passive Parks Director. At this time, due to limited staffing availability, the trail wheelchair is available to reserve Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 4:00pm.

Watch this short video on the versatility and mobility of trail use.

Watch this short video for additional tips, and this video for backing up.

For more information about the trail wheelchair, please visit the GRIT website.

Facility Rental Application

The Passive Parks Facility Rental Application provides instructions, a fee schedule, and an application process for reserving available facilities on passive park properties. The application will be updated as new facilities and amenities become available for public use. Click here to download the facility rental application.

All picnic pavilions on Beaufort County passive parks are on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Currently, the only passive park facilities available for event rental are as follows:

  • Crystal Lake Park Conference Room
    • Monday through Friday, 8:00am to 5:00pm
  • Fort Fremont History Center Conference Room
    • Monday through Sunday, 7:00am to 10:00pm
  • Widgeon Point Preserve Event Barn
    • Monday through Sunday, 7:00am to midnight
    • No events will be scheduled November 1 to January 31 due to nesting bald eagles
    • ANY event at Widgeon Point Preserve requires an approved facility rental application
  • Whitehall Park