The Location

The award-winning visitor center at Sweetwater Creek is a Platinum LEED Certified structure. This means it uses the latest advances in eco-friendly construction and operation. It houses a museum dedicated to the former mill operations on the property.  You can learn all about the eco-friendly construction here.

Sweetwater Creek State Park is a peaceful tract of wilderness only minutes from downtown Atlanta. A wooded trail follows the stream to the ruins of the New Manchester Manufacturing Company, a textile mill burned during the Civil War. Beyond the mill, the trail climbs rocky bluffs to provide views of the beautiful rapids below. Additional trails wind through fields and forest, showcasing ferns, magnolias, wild azaleas and hardwoods. Park rangers lead informative hikes to these areas throughout the year.

The 215-acre George Sparks Reservoir is popular for fishing and provides a pretty setting for feeding ducks and picnicking. Fishing supplies are available in the adjacent bait shop. During warmer months, the park rents fishing boats, canoes, kayaks and pedal boats. Visitors can join the Park Paddler’s Club, which challenges them to explore waterways in six state parks. An award-winning Visitor Center -- one of the most environmentally responsible buildings in the country -- features exhibits on the area’s history, wildlife displays, trail maps, snacks and a gift shop. A window-lined meeting room can be rented for small gatherings.  Read more about the park here.