Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The D&D Park

I'm back from vacation, and getting caught up.  We spent a week in southern Illinois, right near the Kentucky border, where the in-laws have a house on one of those large lakes in coal mining country.  Spent some time boating, fishing, swimming, that kind of stuff - a real break from the daily circus.

If you find yourself in the vicinity of Carbondale, Illinois, here's something to check out, particularly if you have kids:  the Boo Rochman Memorial Park.  It's a free park out on Giant City Road; instead of jungle gyms and merry-go-rounds, the park apparatus is a large, maze-like wooden castle with multiple levels.  There are places to sit and have lunch, and plenty of shady areas with various D&D-themed statues as well (wizards, druids, dragons, tombs, guys in the trees, and so forth).  Naturally the three kiddos convinced me to play a few rounds of hide-and-seek in the large castle.  Here are some pics of the place:

It's a private park, open to the public, and a placard indicates the park was created as a memorial to a son who died young - probably right out of high school.  If you find yourself in the vicinity of SIU, it's worth a drive out to the park, especially if you have kids.  What an awesome way these folks have chosen to remember their son - bringing a little happiness to kids everywhere that love wizards, dragons, knights and castles.


  1. Awesome. I went to college and grad school at SIU (which I understand has a place in D&D history as well) but this was not there then. I'll have to check it out.

  2. I just googled this. Jeremy died in a car accident, his dad was wealthy and built this as a tribute to his son. Apparently, the statues are based on the figs he had in his collection. That's a pretty cool dad. D&D may not have made much sense to him (or maybe it did, IDK) but he knew it was important to his son. I think he hit the nail on the head in creating a memorial.

    1. A "pretty cool dad"? I say a SUPER COOL DAD!

  3. My wife and I grew up in Southern Illinois. Mother-in-Law still lives and works in Carbondale. I spent many a weekend in Giant City, but this wasn't there at the time as I left in 1992. I'll have to check it out on the next trip. Thanks.

  4. Thanks for posting about this! It's only about 5 hours from where I live. So I know where my wife (who's also a gamer) & I will be going to on a day trip.

  5. It's a nice park, great for kids. Based on a different placard, it looks like it went up in 2005, so it hasn't been there too long, for you folks that graduated SIU before then.