R. Garland Dodd Park at Point of Rocks in the southeastern tip of Chesterfield County on the Appomattox River. The 188-acre park opened in 1980 and features a diverse natural area and a rich history. Athletic facilities and picnic areas are concentrated in the upper areas of the park.
Access to the lower level is provided by a system of nature trails, which includes a boardwalk through the freshwater tidal marsh of Ashton Creek. Amenities include picnic shelters, play equipment, tennis and basketball courts and fields for football, soccer and baseball and dirt and gravel trails for hiking and biking (some single and doubletrack).
The park is often a good stopping point for spring migrating birds. The Ashton Creek marsh and tree line that overlook the marsh are perfect habitats for warblers and other songbirds. The boardwalk through the marsh will bring you close to breeding red-wing blackbirds, common yellowthroats and raptors overhead.
The area around Ashton Creek Marsh in eastern Chesterfield has been used for many things. It has been a hunting ground for ancient humans, a village and farming area for Native Americans, a battlefield in the Civil War, an industrial site in the late 19th century, a port until the 1920s and a farm until it became Chesterfield County’s Point of Rocks Park.
R. Garland Dodd was a Chesterfield County supervisor from 1977 until 1987. He helped create Henricus Historical Park and supported improvements to Route 288 and Route 10. Dodd championed development, but fought for and held a special place for conservation. The county’s rich history held a special place for Dodd, a resident of Chester who traced his direct lineage back to Thomas Jefferson. He died in 2002.