The Visit Hickory Metro team encourages visitors and locals to explore the Hickory Metro region carefully and safely. The state of North Carolina has lifted all mass gathering limits at this time but encourages individuals to still practice the three W's - Wear, Wait, Wash. People who are fully vaccinated can do all of the things that they did before the pandemic. Those unvaccinated, should still wear a mask in public indoor settings & public outdoor settings when they cannot maintain social distance. To learn more about what our area is doing to prevent the spread of COVID-19 click below. 

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St. Stephens Park and Dog Park


St. Stephens Park is located next to the City of Hickory. This 9-acre park offers a dog park so your furry friend can play with other dogs. It also offers a playground and a 1/3 mile hiking trail which makes one feel like they are alone in nature, far from the urbanized world. Catawba County offers dog parks at 2 of our park locations, which create a social experience for dog owners and provide necessary exercise for their dogs. These are fenced areas where dogs can run and play with other dogs without wearing a leash (see below for permit requirements). Leashed dogs are allowed on trails throughout the park outside of the designated dog park areas. Dog parks include waste stations, benches, tables, and shelters to protect users from the sun or rain. Entrances are double gated for safe leashing and unleashing. For health reasons, we request that you bring your own water and small water bowl. NOTE: Permit required. You must have an official vet record indicating that Rabies, DHLLP and Bordatella shots on the application sheet are up to date. The fee is $20.00 a year per dog can be paid with cash or check only (made payable to Catawba County). Permit is valid for one year from purchase date. Call for more information.