- Do I have to be a Portage resident to rent a Portage parks facility?
- How far in advance can I reserve a parks facility?
- If I want to reserve a parks pavilion or facility, how do I go about it?
- Are canopies, bouncing inflatables, climbing towers, or dunk tanks allowed in Portage parks?
- Is there an admission fee to Ramona Park?
- How long is the canoe ride from the Livery?
- How do I get back to my car parked at the Celery Flats Interpretive Center after the canoe ride?
- Why isn’t the Livery open on Fridays for canoeing or surrey rental?
- Why is the Livery closed after Labor Day?
- Is alcohol allowed in Portage park facilities?
- If vehicles are prohibited on park trails, why do I see Parks trucks on trails?
- Why aren’t all trails plowed during the winter months?
- Why are park restrooms closed in the fall?
- I have a complaint/question about the condition of a cemetery lot. Who can I speak with?
- When will the city observe Trick-or-Treat this year?
- Why aren’t bicycles allowed in the Skatepark at South Westnedge?
1. Do I have to be a Portage resident to rent a Portage parks facility?
No, any person 21 years or older can rent a pavilion or one of the Portage Historical buildings in Celery Flats.
2. How far in advance can I reserve a parks facility?
Facilities may be reserved one year in advance with the exception of the Celery Flats buildings, Overlander Bandshell and Central Park pavilion. These facilities are available on a limited basis for the months of May through August as cultural programming allows once the Summer Entertainment Series events have been determined.
3. If I want to reserve a parks pavilion or facility, how do I go about it?
There are two methods to start the rental process - you can either submit the Facility Rental Request Form online or call the Parks office at 269-329-4522 (Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) to ask if the pavilion or facility you are interested in renting is available. When it is confirmed that you can rent the desired location, we will take your name, address, and other information. You then have two weeks to either pay the damage deposit (if required) or the rental fee to keep your reservation on the calendar. Payment must be made by check or cash – no credit cards are accepted. Rental information will be sent to you via email if you have an email address or sent via US mail otherwise. You will need to fill out a Parks Reservation Permit form when you make your deposit or rental fee payment.
4. Are canopies, bouncing inflatables, climbing towers, or dunk tanks allowed in Portage parks?
Canopies are allowed in certain parks, please check with the Parks Department 269-329-4522 for specific details. Bouncing inflatables and climbing towers are allowed when provided by a licensed, commercial vendor. No residential units are permitted. All requests for these units must be approved by the Parks Department prior to installation. Dunk tanks must also be approved by the Parks Department prior to being placed in any park for any event.
5. Is there an admission fee to Ramona Park?
Yes, during the months when the lifeguards are on duty (Memorial Day through Labor Day) there is an admission fee to the park. Prior to Memorial Day or after Labor Day there is not an admission fee.
6. How long is the canoe ride from the Livery?
The trip down stream from the Livery off of Garden Lane to Milham Road overpass usually takes about 30-45 minutes. During low water, you may be required to portage your canoe a short distance.
7. How do I get back to my car parked at the Celery Flats Interpretive Center after the canoe ride?
The distance back to Celery Flats along the Bicentennial Park trail is about one mile. Most people enjoy the natural setting of the trail and walk back to Garden Lane where your vehicle is parked. You can also park a second vehicle at the Milham Ave. access to Bicentennial Park.
8. Why isn’t the Livery open on Fridays for canoeing or surrey rental?
The Livery schedule was created based on usage and demand. The Livery was open on Fridays for several years, but not enough people used the services during this time period. We apologize for the inconvenience.
9. Why is the Livery closed after Labor Day?
The Livery is open during periods of high demand. After Labor Day, once school and other fall activities begin, there is not enough demand to justify the cost of operating the Livery on weekends. Groups requiring five or more canoes will be accommodated with advance reservations through the Parks Department (269-329-4522).
10. Is alcohol allowed in Portage park facilities?
Alcohol is allowed in most city parks with the exception of Ramona Park due to the beach operation and Westfield Park due to a neighborhood initiative. However, alcohol consumption is not allowed in parking lots to prevent safety concerns and loitering problems. Nor is it allowed in the dugouts of any softball diamonds. The serving of alcohol for rentals requires a city permit.
11. If vehicles are prohibited on park trails, why do I see Parks trucks on trails?
The use of motorized vehicles by the Parks Department is the best way to access the trails for trail repairs, litter removal and emergency needs. Park Rangers periodically patrol trails by trucks throughout the year when bicycle access is not feasible.
12. Why aren’t all trails plowed during the winter months?
Due to cost constraints and limited winter maintenance staffing, snow removal is limited to the following locations:
1) Along the Bicentennial Park Trail for general public access for recreational activity, and
2) The Northwest Portage Bikeway trail from Hampton east to Constitution due to the number of school children who use the trail for access to Haverhill School.
13. Why are park restrooms closed in the fall?
Park restrooms are not heated and subject to freezing and damage during the late fall/winter periods. Restrooms are closed during the last week of October and open by May 1.
14. I have a complaint/question about the condition of a cemetery lot. Who can I speak with?
You can contact the Parks Department (329-4522) and we will take your name, telephone number and specific concern in order to give it to our Parks Superintendent who will get back with you.
15. When will the city observe Trick-or-Treat this year?
The City of Portage does not regulate, set or change the date or time for trick-or-treating within the city. It is a matter of personal and/or neighborhood preference when children trick-or-treat.
16. Why aren’t bicycles allowed in the Skatepark at South Westnedge?
The skatepark is a non-monitored facility. During skatepark development, city officials determined it best to not allow bicycle use. Bicycles must be separated from other uses and do have the potential to create much more damage to the facility. The city does not have the resources to manage separate uses and the facility can handle more skateboarders at one time than bicyclists.