The week of April 21st – 27th, 2019 is National Forest Week and Forest County Extension is partnering with our county Forestry and Parks Department to briefly highlight the role forestry plays in our county.
The Forest County Forestry Department currently manages 14,876 acres of publicly owned County Forest Land for the purpose of sustainable forest management, wildlife conservation, and recreation. Within the County Forest, there are two designated cross-country ski trails, over 50 miles of ATV trails, over 400 miles of snowmobile trails and 80 miles of maintained logging roads for hunters, hikers, bikers, and other outdoor enthusiasts.
The Parks Department also maintains Veterans Memorial Park for both residents and visitors to the area.
Veteran’s Memorial Park was authorized by action of the Forest County Board of Supervisors on August 7th, 1962. According to the minutes of the County Board of Supervisors, William Duff moved to adjourn the County Board meeting “until the County Board, as a whole, inspected the progress on the Park.”.
The Forest Republican followed up the visit to the County Park with an in-depth article on the management of the park and a photo of the County Board’s impromptu visit.
According to the article, Mrs. Jospehine Spencer was the caretaker at the park seven day a week and reported that an average of 53 people a day stayed at the park in July of 1962 and that no one complained about the dollar per night camping charge made by the county.
Forest County purchased the land for the park in 1959 from the State Land Commission for $10,700 which includes 78 acres and about 1,540 feet of lake frontage. In 1962, there were “two modern rest rooms”, “7,000 yards of gravel and fill”, a “blacktop boat ramp and buoys around the swimming area to keep boaters away. The article goes on to say that the county board had delegated its public property committee to have charge of the operation of the park. The members of the committee were Everette Cole, William Duff and Len Staska.
Thanks to the hard work and dedication of our Forestry and Parks Department and the foresight of the 1962 County Board of Supervisors, fifty-seven years later, Forest County’ Veteran’s Memorial Park continues to be a gathering place for both residents and visitors alike. Whether it’s fishing, skiing or just plain boating, Veteran’s Memorial Park is a destination Forest County can be proud of!