Esther Short Park

A 5-acre gem in the heart of downtown Vancouver, Esther Short Park is the oldest public square in the state of Washington.

Need to report a maintenance issue? Fill out an online service request form with Public Works. If the issue is more urgent call 360-487-8177.


  • Benches
  • Gazebo
  • Open lawn
  • Picnic shelter/stage
  • Playground with swings
  • Restrooms
  • Walking paths
  • Water feature/fountain

The water feature at Esther Short Park is scheduled to run mid-May through September. Please note we may test the water feature outside of this date range. Safety is our number one priority. If the fountain is turned off it means we are working on an unexpected maintenance issue or testing the chemicals and pump system.

The Salmon Run Bell Tower consists of 25 cast bronze bells, four 6 ft tower clocks, and a glockenspiel that depicts Native American lore. The bells are controlled by a carillon that plays from pre-programmed music or local keyboard. The bells are struck by individual strike mechanisms, meaning the sounds heard come from the bells themselves, and not the recording. Each bell ranges in size from 20 to 400 lbs. Currently the glockenspiel is programmed to begin after the chime at noon, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.

If you have questions or concerns about either of these amenities, contact our main line at 360-487-8303 or email [email protected].

Park Hours and Fees

Esther Short Park is open to the public from 5 a.m. until 10 p.m.

Parking spaces around this park are metered with various time limits. Take a look at the City’s parking map to plan your trip.

Special Events

Esther Short Park serves as a year-round venue for a variety of public and private events, programs, concerts and other activities.

Want to plan your event in Esther Short Park? Explore park permit fees for public and private events.

An area has been designated in Esther Short Park for people wishing to participate in Free Speech. Technically, the entire park is available for Free Speech activities, unless closed to the public through a special event permit.

Leave A Legacy

Bricks located around the bell tower in Propstra Square are an excellent way to commemorate a loved one or friend. Proceeds from the sale of bricks benefit the Parks Foundation of Clark County and the maintenance of flowers and plants growing in the park.

Cover image and text courtesy City of Vancouver.

Venue Detail

605 Esther St, Vancouver, WA 98660

Google Maps

COVID-19: Due to the impact of Coronavirus on in-person events, we will not be updating this site for the duration of the pandemic. We are continuing to send weekly newsletters, however, with links to upcoming online events.Subscribe!