Hickory Grove Park is a large county park with a stocked pond, several camping sites, and hiking trails.
Fort Des Moines Park has a small arboretum, playground, and trail going around the lake.
Badger Creek State Recreation Area is a popular fishing destination, with a large lake. There are no designated trails but there is wooded space to explore as well. Every year in mid-July, there is a large sunflower field that is popular for taking pictures (details below for the 2017 field location).
Copper Creek Lake Park is a large park with lots of different trees and plants, a large pond, playground, and trail access. A paved path goes around the lake and there are short, kid-friendly grass nature trails behind the playground. Great place to find geese!
Raccoon River Park/Sprayground/Beach/Dog park is a huge park with lots to offer – the playground has a unique ship shape, sand pit, and several structures. The trail going around the lake is over 3 miles long, and a mix of crushed rock and pavement. There are lots of wildflowers and wildlife to see along the trail, come back and cool off at the swimming beach.