Conservation Director Karen Phelps discusses the Old Creamery Nature Trailhead with county supervisors.

The Benton County Supervisors spent all afternoon on Tuesday, touring 10 of the county’s parks with Conservation Director Karen Phelps and many of her department’s staff members.

They began at Rodgers Park, where lunch included pizzas that the staff had baked in the outdoor ovens, one of the newer attractions there. After a tour of Rodgers Park, the group then traveled to Garrison, where Randy Scheel discussed the Old Creamery Nature Trailhead, and the work Garrison residents are doing there.

The tour also include Hannen Park/Hannen Lake, the Atkins Roundhouse Area, the Pangborn Area north of Shellsburg, Hoefle Dulin Park and Benton City Park (both of which are along the Cedar River between Vinton and Shellsburg), Wildcat Park south of Urbana, Minne Estema Park and the Winegar Park along the northern border of Benton County. Winegar is the site of a new trail suitable for horse riding.

The Conservation Department employees discussed a variety of changes under way at the county parks, and the challenges they face in maintaining the land and water areas.

Changes in how property owners manage their land surrounding county areas has contributed to silt problems at Rodgers Park and Hannen Park lakes, and managing vegetation in the water is also becoming more challenging.

See a list of all of the county parks with a description of each, HERE.