Take a stroll along the Neuse River Walk in historic Smithfield's Town Commons. Watch nature, go fishing, or picnic along the river. A boat ramp is located at end of Front Street for canoes and kayaks.
200 S. Front St.
Smithfield, NC 27577
- When Smithfield was chartered by the NC General Assembly in 1777, land along the east bank of the Neuse River was set aside as *commons* - in effect, a public park.
- In the early 1970's, the Smithfield Year Round Garden Club, lead by Elizabeth "Lib" Morgan and the Boy Scout Troop 21 constructed the original Neuse River Nature Trail from the Girl Scout Hut on South Second St, to the old water plant area on North Front Street.
- In 1975, the Smithfield Appearance Commission presented the Smithfield Town Council with plans for the establishment of the Town Commons Park area along the Neuse River, both on the north and south side of Market Street.
- In 1977, when Smithfield celebrated its 200th birthday, a formal park was developed. The Bicentennial project included construction of a boat ramp at the approximate site of Smith's Ferry, a nature trail linking the boat-ramp area with the Jaycee Kiddie Park adjacent to Riverside Cemetery, and later a stage facing the grassy bank between the Legion Hut and Hastings House that created a natural amphitheatre was constructed by the Smithfield Kiwanis Club.
- In 1986, Mr. Calvin Edgerton petitioned the Smithfield Town Council to support the inclusion of the Town Commons as a part of the Mountains to the Sea Trail.
- In 1999, the Downtown Smithfield Development Corporation raised approximately $45,000 through the sale of the original art and sale of limited edition lithograph prints of artist Renee Langdon - "Smith's Ferry"
- In 2002, the Downtown Smithfield Development Corporation received a $5,000 grant from the NC Trails Grant program and Phase 1 of Neuse Riverwalk was constructed.
- In 2004, the Downtown Smithfield Development Corporation received a $50,000 NC Trails Grant and Phase 2 and 3 of the Neuse Riverwalk was constructed.
- In 2004 the Greenway Project was placed on the Transportation Improvement Program. Funding in the amount of $900,000 was earmarked from NCDOT and $100,000 from the Town of Smithfield.