Many visitors are unaware that the sprawling, grassy field at the center of Fort Seward is public use land, an informal park set aside through a tax exemption to a property owner. Residents flock here for town celebrations including on the Fourth of July and during a Yuletide Lighting of the Fort. (A blast from the cannon there signals Fort residents to turn on their Christmas displays all at once.) It’s a classy spot, surrounded on all four sides by the stately Fort buildings. On a sunny, windless day, there’s no better place to run your dog, play a game of catch or spread out a picnic blanket and doze off while enjoying the view across Lynn Canal toward Santa Claus Mountain. During the state fair and bike race weekends, a tent city pops up here. Restrooms located on the field’s north (downhill) flank. Just downhill, visit the quirky Haines Sculpture Garden, a project featuring abstract, whimsical and representational creations by resident artists, situated inside the foundation of a former Army barracks building.