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It Looks Like It’s Finally Going To Happen!

May 8, 2016
Kevin Williams - Grundy County Conservation Director , Reinbeck Courier

Before you read too much into the title, don't jump to conclusions and think it means I am retiring.

But I will start this column with a look back. When I came to Grundy County in 1980, it was as a Park Ranger with primary responsibilities being the Wolf Creek Recreation Area near Beaman. This was the county's largest park with camping, picnicking, hiking trails and a public hunting area to name a few things.

Often discussed during my patrolling visits with campers was a shower/restroom building (or more accurately the lack thereof). There were two pit latrines (outhouses) that served the park users. The same two that are still in service today.

Article Photos

Sketch of the Shower/restroom building.
Photo submitted

When I was appointed Director in 1994, I set about drafting a plan to have "modern" conveniences added to the park amenities. Central Iowa Water Association brought pressurized water into the park as the first step. We were on the path to that shower/restroom facility. But along came the Highway 20 project and with it a wonderful once in a lifetime opportunity that eventually materialized into a new park called Grundy County Lake & Campground.

Planning for that park began in 1995. From that point forward much time and resources were devoted in making this the area we proudly can show off today.

But the Wolf Creek shower/restroom improvements stayed on the drawing board only shelved for what was supposed to be a short time. Well, it stretched into a longer time but I am pleased to report that it came off that shelf. Over the past winter serious planning has taken place. CGA of Marshalltown was chosen to do preliminary site and waste disposal plans. The final work on the facility plan is being done as I write this.

I am excited to give you the word that if things go according to plan, there will be a new facility arriving and being installed with the building being available for park users before the end of the summer!

This building will be located so that it can serve the shelter, playground, and the electrical portion of the campground. Drawing upon the popularity of the facility at Grundy County Lake Campground, the new addition at Wolf Creek will be a scaled down version of that design. Rather than six, this one will have two private rooms each containing the necessary toilet, sink and shower area which will serve the park numbers well.

Water and electricity are both present in this area so once bid, the progress can begin shortly. If figures come in as anticipated, this will be a prefab masonry building with an attractive, rustic, timber-frame front which will complement the natural beauty of this park.

If you are one of those people who have waited patiently for this addition, I want to say thank you. If you are one of those people who just might wish to say thank you with a monetary contribution to the project, then to you I say thank you, as well.

I didn't start this article or this project planning to end it begging for money. But the other day I found myself in a conversation with an individual about the many projects and fundraising accomplishments that have come our way as a department over the last 36 years.

"Don't look at things like you are begging and bothering. You have given many people an opportunity to help provide present and future park users some wonderful places to enjoy nature."

If you are excited to have this project coming to Wolf Creek, I'd love to hear from you. If you would like to help provide present and future park users some wonderful places to enjoy nature with this project. I'd love to hear from you, too.

Stay tuned!

 
 

 

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