Members of the Marshall County Parks and Recreation Board received an update on the addition of a possible canoe/kayak launch.
Terry Borggren, a volunteer who heads up the committee and has been working on the project for about a year told the board he talked with Scott Pelath Executive Director of the Kankakee and Yellow River Basin. They are willing to help as much as possible. He also spoke with Wes Zurbrugg the public access maintenance supervisor with the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). They met at the King Road Bridge and looked at the possibility of a launch at that site. Initially, Zurbrugg thought the DNR might be able to assist with a project but there is an issue with the DNR and the Army Corp of Engineers on the definition of “navigable waters.” The Army Corp considers the Yellow River a non-navigable waterway except south of Plymouth and the DNR isn’t sure they can help with that determination.
Borggren said at the county line the Kankakee/Yellow River Basin completed a reconstruction project and it has a very primitive launch with accessible banks and a ramp going down that might work for the Marshall County Park Board. Zurbrugg thought a simpler project like that might work instead of the $600,000 project proposed by USI.
County Highway Superintendent Jason Peters also looked at the King Road site and asked who would be responsible for the maintenance of a launch. Someone would need to mow and take care of trash.
With no answers, the possibility of a launch is still a possibility.
Park Board President Greg Hildebrand brought up the possibility of a new project and seek READI 2.0 funding for it. He proposed an ADA-compliant trail in the Memorial Forest that could be grouped with additional similar projects in the county.
Hildebrand said the Memorial Forest would be a good location because the ground is relatively flat. He said the Culver Park Department has conducted an adaptive water-skiing program for the past few years but getting handicapped individuals from the park down to Lake Maxinkuckee has been an issue. He said they are looking for some sort of entryway that would be ADA-compliant.
Hildebrand also said there is a program for kids who have mobility issues that could be offered at the Marshall County Fairgrounds but there are ADA issues. He thought grouping those three projects or more together might be an idea for a grant application through READI 2.0.
County Park board members were interested in looking into an ADA-compliant trail for the Memorial Forest.
In other news, it’s weed-whacking season at the Multi-Use Trails at Mill Pond. Jeff Houin said they have been trimming and working to keep the trail open. Some trees came down in a recent storm and the committee cleared them out. He said the workstation is installed and the shelter should be put up any time.
The Historic Trustee Cabin hasn’t seen any progress toward completion. Park Board member Dick Markley said he finally was able to speak with Yoder Log and Timber and the contractor has been in Montana. He will discuss getting the project wrapped up.