The hunt for dining spots with good outdoor seating has never been as competitive as right now, and we have the perfect solution when your favorite restaurant patio feels a little too crowded for your liking—or you just need a change of scenery! Grab a blanket, order takeout, and scout out the most ideal place for an al fresco meal (picnic) tableside.
Note: Please remember to wear a mask when picking up your food, and for when six feet of social distancing cannot be maintained outdoors. Have an alternative plan in place if your desired location is too full, and adhere to Clark County Park rules.
Vancouver Lake Regional Park
With 65 picnic tables and plenty of grassy areas, you’re sure to find a nice patch for spacious noshing at Vancouver Lake. On a clear day, your picnic can even be paired with views of Mount Hood, Mount St. Helens, and Mount Adams. If you plan to participate in some water activities in between bites, be sure to check the current water quality beforehand.
Takeout Tip: Shanahan’s Pub & Grill is in route from nearly any direction you are coming from, located 10 minutes away in Uptown Village. Bringing classic American comfort food up a notch, choose from four different burgers on the takeout menu, plus hot wings by the pound and lots of fried apps to share.
Lewisville Regional Park
With a historic beginning that dates back to the Great Depression, Lewisville Park’s expansive 159-acre space contains 147 picnic tables and flat grounds just asking for a blanket set-up. Share a meal among towering willow trees with soothing sounds of the Lewis River flowing in the background.
Takeout Tip: Battle Ground’s Barrel Mountain Brewing gets creative with their epicurean menu items, like the Beet Me Up salad and the Stinky Rose Frites. A 10-minute drive from the park, grab a six-pack for later in the evening, as alcohol consumption is not permitted at Clark County Parks. Note: Barrel Mountain does not do takeout during dinner hours from 5 to 8 p.m.
Fort Vancouver National Historic Site
Stay close to downtown and experience the city’s history by soaking in the sights of Fort Vancouver. Find your picnic spot in the gazebo, at one of the picnic tables that dot the grounds, or right on the (seemingly always) green grass.
Takeout Tip: Who said picnics can’t be fancy? Literally steps from the bandstand, Eatery at the Grant House serves up gourmet bites and meals fit for a queen…or a 1850s commanding officer. So put on your best summer dress and treat yourself!
Salmon Creek Regional Park / Klineline Pond
On one end of the paved urban greenway trail, find Klineline Pond, complete with a roped swimming area, sandy shoreline, and 35 picnic tables. Be aware that furry friends are not allowed in the main use area after crossing the bridge.
Takeout Tip: Downtown favorite Amaro’s Table has a new location in Hazel Dell that just happens to be a five-minute drive from Klineline Pond’s parking lot. Try out their online ordering system for soups, sandwiches, and sides, including the melt-in-your-mouth fried chicken sando and house-made potato chips with a special dipping sauce. Bonus: a dedicated kids menu and desserts!
Lacamas Regional Park
Hike a bit before settling in for a peaceful picnic lakeside. Find the Lacamas Lake area’s 18 picnic tables, mostly located on the north end of Round Lake and near Lower Falls on McEnry Trail. No matter where you decide to drop your blanket, you’ll never have a bad view.
Takeout Tip: Known for their meaty masterpieces and award-winning craft beer, order a smoked brisket sandwich or jalapeño popper burger from Camas’ Grains of Wrath Brewing for curbside pick-up. Again, you’ll have to save the brews for later, but round out the meal with snacks and shareables, along with a grilled cheese for the kids.
*Some of these parks require a $3 daily parking fee for cars. Bike or walk in at no charge.