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Desiree Stanfield, Supervisor – Marketing & Communications 

2022 Budget Approved New Release

OAKLAND COUNTY –The Oakland County Parks and Recreation (OCPR) budget for fiscal year 2022 has been approved at $34,197,675 by the Oakland County Board of Commissioners.

The budget will focus on projects that maintain park sites such as roof and HVAC replacements, road paving and maintenance and golf course irrigation.

“One hundred percent of all funded projects are a reinvestment into existing facilities and natural areas,” OCPR Interim Executive Officer Sue Wells said. “These projects are necessities. Our visitors expect their 14 Oakland County Parks to be well maintained.”

Herons return to Lyon Oaks County Park

After a long hiatus, Great Blue Herons have returned to nest at Lyon Oaks County Park in Wixom.

Great Blue Herons have nested intermittently on what is now park property since the early 1900s. In the late 1980s, there were more than 200 nests located on the property. When Oakland County Parks and Recreation acquired the land in the early 1990s, the rookery had already been abandoned, which is a natural pattern for heron rookeries.

In 2006 DTE Energy provided and installed 11 75-foot cedar utility poles as nesting structures, to encourage Great Blue Herons to once again nest in the park. In 2020 and again in 2021, two nests were active, demonstrating that the structures and location are acceptable to these magnificent birds. 

Independence Oaks County Park - North's Upper Bushman Lake receives special catch-and-release-for-all-fish-species designation from Michigan DNR 

Oakland County is home to thousands of lakes and rivers that residents use for boating, paddling and fishing. Among them are Upper Bushman Lake, a 32-acre lake in Independence Oaks County Park near Clarkston that has once again received a catch-and-release-for-all-fish-species designation from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

The designation means that anglers can catch fish, but must release them back into the lake to support the high-quality fishery. 

Waterford Oaks Waterpark remains closed for 2021 season

Oakland County Parks and Recreation was not able to hire enough lifeguards to staff the facility located in Waterford.

 "We appreciate the patience of our dedicated staff who have been working since January to recruit and hire staff for all our facilities," Interim Executive Officer Susan Wells said. "Unfortunately, lifeguard recruiting has been an issue the last few years in the county, state and nation. OCPR will not operate a facility if we are unable to provide the adequate safety level for our guests and staff."

Red Oaks Waterpark opens for 2021 season

After last summer’s hiatus due to the pandemic, Oakland County Parks and Recreation officials are excited to welcome visitors back at Red Oaks Waterpark in Madison Heights. 

Catch the latest news in the OAKNotes summer edition

The Summer 2021 issue of Oakland County Parks and Recreation's OAKNotes Newsletter is now available. Look inside this issue to learn more about the Oakland County Fair, changes at Red Oaks Waterpark, natural resources updates and more!

Oakland County Parks and Recreation 2020 Annual Report

In 2020, people explored the outdoors in record numbers to find respite from COVID-19. Oakland County Parks and Recreation's 14 parks provided 80 miles of hiking trails and free park entry for three months to provide residents a place to exercise and seek solace in nature.

The 2020 Oakland County Parks and Recreation Commission Annual Report: Parks and Recreation – an Essential Service showcases key initiatives of the parks system. 

2021 Recreation Assistance Partnership Program funding approved

The Oakland County Parks and Recreation Commission approved $200,000 to support the 2021 Recreation Assistance Partnership Program (RAPP), which awards grants to local communities for outreach recreation programs, opportunities and experiences.

2021 Annual Vehicle Permits

Oakland County Parks and Recreation Annual Vehicle Permits are now available for 2021. Permits may be purchased online, by mail and in person at many locations throughout Oakland County

With voter approval of the 2020 Oakland County Parks and Recreation millage replacement and increase, we are pleased to be able to provide a free Annual Vehicle Permit to eligible Oakland County residents. Learn more here.