Over the last two years the Recreation Authority has initated several projects to upgrade facilities at the Winter Sports Park and Henning Park. The following page describes and illustrates our progres!
Winter Sports Park
The Winter Sports Park has been a regional center for winter sporting activities for several decades. The park property is owned by the County and features twin cement based toboggan runs, a sledding hill and lodge. The toboggan runs and sledding hill are operational, but require major equipment and maintenance updates. After reviewing and discussing the future of the park at several meetings, the Recreation Authority reasoned that, in the short term, the cost of repairing and/or replacing the equipment in the park was too high and that recent warm weather trends would leave the potential operation of such equipment open for only a short period of time.
Therefore, the Recreation Authority determined the park and lodge would make an ideal location for a trailhead that would provide a link with the North Country Trail and the 16 miles of future trails detailed in the recreation plan. This past year, the Recreation Authority successfully drafted and adopted a lease agreement to take control of the park.
Subsequently, the Recreation Authority worked with county officials to undertake a complete overhaul of the lodge and park grounds, including, a new parking lot, new signage, landscapping, two new unisex bathrooms, a new janitorial closet, a new septic system, new electric infrastructure, new windows, a new roof and structural improvements to many of the original lodge logs.
Bathrooms (Before, Construction, After)
Main Lodge (Before, Construction, After)
Outside (Before & After)
Grounds (Before & After)
Parking Lot (Before, Construction, After)
Signage (Before & After)
The swimming pond at Henning Park is the primary location for swimming in the Newaygo Community. The swimming pond is a major attraction to tourists using the adjacent campground and is used for swimming lessons by several summer camps within the area. In recent years, public officials received a number of complaints about the depth of the pond and water quality.
Funding provided by the Fremont Area Community Foundation grant was used to:
As a result of this work, the swimming pond had one of its busiest summer seasons (2008) on record. Summer camps brought in around 50 kids on Tuesdays and Thursdays for the entire summer and the park averaged around 35 additional visitors on weekdays and between 80 and 125 people on the weekends. In addition, the County Parks Director and Recreation Authority Board Members received a number of compliments on the swimming pond.
The parking lot at Henning Park was often over-crowded and the surface was in disrepair. On crowded days, it was especially difficult to maneuver automobiles in and out of the parking lot. Funding provided by the Fremont Area Community Foundation grant was used to resurface and expand the parking by an additional 40 spaces. Improvements to the parking lot were completed in time to provide for the bulk of the summer season.
Before & After
The tennis courts at Henning Park are the only location to play tennis in the Newaygo Community. However, with a heavily chipped playing service, faded or non-existent court markings, weeds and no netting, the courts have been unplayable for many years. The basketball court was in relatively good condition. However, the court was extremely small, had no markings and only two goals.
Funding provided by the Fremont Area Community Foundation grant was used to remove the basketball court from its current location (area were parking lot was expanded) and begin improvements on the current tennis courts. In the fall, funding from the grant was used to repave and seal the tennis courts, paint new line markings, add new nets. This new playing service will provide an opportunity to play both tennis and basketball.
In addition, the grant was used to improve several site concerns related to this area of the Henning Park including, lighting, landscaping and grading, drainage and access.
Tennis Courts( Before & After)
Staircase (Pedestrian Access)
Baseball Fields on Old M-47 (Painting and Maintenance on sign & dugouts)
Over the next two years, the Newaygo Community RecreationAuthority will be working on a number of exciting new recreational initiatives including, the development of non-motorized trails linking the Winter Sports Complex with the North Country Trail and Downtown Newaygo, several new soccer fields, a new skateboard park and ice-rink and a new baseball/softball facility.
Soccer Fields - Off Croton Road (clearing, leveling and seeding has been finished)
Skate Park and Ice Rink - Corner of Ewing & Barton (clearing has just started)
This page last updated on 1/9/2009.