Breaking News

Local News

October 15, 2012

France Park begins improvements

Park staff are making changes to draw larger crowds for the park’s 2013 spring season

Kevin and Connie McCarthy spent Thursday afternoon taking their two grandchildren, Kilynn and Brayden Tabler, around France Park.

Although Connie has been coming to France Park for more than 40 years, she has been coming to the area with Kevin for the past eight years. In those years, both of them said they have seen the park through some rough patches.

“I’m really excited about the changes being made to the park,” Connie said. “We love it here.” Kevin said he enjoys that there is so much to do.

“We usually just visit for the day, but we’re thinking about overnight camping before the end of the season,” Kevin said. “Our grandkids can swim in the quarry, fish in the pond, play on the playground equipment, take a hike on some trails and then by the end it’s nap time for them.”

France Park Superintendent Lucas Beach and other staff members are making some major changes within the park so that visitors, like the McCarthys, can enjoy the area. The putt-putt course has been ripped up and is getting a three-color scheme and concrete to make it more presentable, Beach said. For the first time in the park, a trail has been widened so that vehicles can drive along it. At the top of the cliffs above the beach, staff and volunteers are clearing brush to create an upper-beach area where people can lay out in the summer months. Also, two miles of new single-track mountain bike trails have been added.

Although the trails have always been marked, Beach said they will be putting metal signs along the trails so that they are harder to tear down.

“Everything we are doing within the park is a permanent improvement,” Beach said. “We want to be able to showcase aspects of the park that are under-utilized.”

Beach said that he is trying to make the water a focal point. By clearing out trees to create the upper-beach area, and by adding volleyball courts, he thinks that will happen. In the spring, Beach plans to showcase new events, and some surprises, that should increase the crowd. In summer and spring months, he plans to host bluegrass, blues and country bands at the park and he also plans to host a county-wide garage sale, where people can come buy sites and have several garage sales in the area at once.

“There will be some sweet surprises coming in the spring,” he said. “We want people in the community to support France Park, have fun and be proud of the area.”

Beach has been superintendent of the park for three months and he said it’s been busy.

Beach, a 2005 graduate of Pioneer Junior-Senior High School, took over the job in July after county officials eliminated the park’s board and fired Sandy Heckard, who had been the superintendent for eight years.

Kevin Parmeter, security officer, has been working at the park for 10 years. Parmeter, who has worked with four different superintendents, said that a lot of good changes are being made and he thinks they will help the park.

“It’s been a trying season,” Parmeter said. “Lucas started some new ideas and I’m excited about next year.”

Parmeter said morale has been raised because campers can volunteer and receive discounted prices from camping, which is something implemented recently.According to Parmeter, people camp year-round to camp at the 250 sites, even when the water gets shut off November 1.

Monthly camping for Cass County residents is $240 and non-county residents pay $275 for a stay of 30 consecutive days. Beach said that the staff members collaborated and talked about what could be changed. He said he also went around within the public to see what the community wanted to see.

“The park has had negative connotations with it and we’re working to fix that,” Beach said. “These changes are really pertinent for the park’s survival, especially these days.”


Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • NWS-PT041814 LC50 cords.jpg 50 years later WALTON -- Dean "D.A." Zehring graduated from the current Lewis Cass High School, but he never attended classes there. It's one of the unique characteristics of the graduating class of 1968, the first class to complete all four years of high school un

    April 18, 2014 3 Photos

  • Caston considers Logan bus stop FULTON -- Caston Schools administrators are considering establishing a bus stop a few miles outside its boundaries on the north side of Logansport. The school board recently discussed the feasibility of adding a bus stop for students transferring fro

    April 18, 2014

  • mushroom Parks let mushroom hunters forage off-trail INDIANAPOLIS - Rain that pounded Brown County State Park in early April dampened the number of hikers and mountain bikers in Indiana's largest state park, but foragers of the property's 15,000 acres of forest welcomed the weather. With the arrival o

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Police blotter: April 17, 2014 Have a tip? Anyone with information on a crime is encouraged to call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS. Information leading to an arrest or conviction could lead to a reward of up to $1,000.

    April 17, 2014

  • NWS-PT041714 G.jpg Sign of support: Class meant to connect hearing-impaired family members Jordanna Dishner-Rush gestured forcefully to a coat rack hanging in the back of the meeting room at the Logansport Library. She was trying to use just hand motions — no speech — to get the other women to guess the secret word she'd been given. Dishne

    April 17, 2014 12 Photos

  • Logansport graduation rate rises again Logansport High School's graduation rate jumped almost 2 percentage points to 92.9 percent in 2013, data released Wednesday show. The Indiana Department of Education released graduation data for the 2012-2013 school year Wednesday. The data show that

    April 17, 2014

  • NWS-PT041714 Mustangs.jpg Local dealer celebrates the Mustang Fifty years ago today, the Ford Mustang was introduced to the public at the New York World's Fair. Now, six of them will be on display for the next few weeks at Rick's Auto Sales in Logansport celebrating what the business owner says is a half centur

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Redevelopment commission proposes new TIF expansion The Logansport Redevelopment Commission is now considering including land surrounding Water Street in a proposed consolidation of the city's tax increment financing districts. A tax increment financing, or TIF, district, captures the increments of an

    April 17, 2014

  • Bids under budget for Carroll project FLORA -- Bids came in under budget for a two-year construction project set to start this summer at Carroll Consolidated Schools. Fourteen construction bids chosen at the Carroll school board's meeting Tuesday night added up to $7,283,628, well under

    April 17, 2014

  • Bunker Hill parents charged with neglect BUNKER HILL — A month-long investigation by Indiana State Police Detective Mike Tarrh recently resulted in the arrests of Richard Avery Jr., 30, and Heather Avery, 28, both of Bunker Hill. Police say they received information from the Miami County Di

    April 16, 2014

Featured Ads
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
AP Video
Author Gabriel Garcia Marquez Dead at 87 Chelsea Clinton Is Pregnant Beau Biden Plans 2016 Run for Del. Governor Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case Horseless Carriage Introduced at NY Auto Show Obama Hopeful on Ukraine, Will Watch Russians Flamingo Frenzy Ahead of Zoo Construction Crew Criticized Over Handling of Ferry Disaster Agreement Reached to Calm Ukraine Tensions Raw: Pope Francis Performs Pre-easter Ritual Boston Bombing Survivors One Year Later Sister of Slain MIT Officer Reflects on Bombing

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.

Should e-cigarette marketing be regulated like tobacco?

     View Results