Parks and Trails

Barry County currently owns and manages three recreational facilities (Historic Charlton Park, McKeown Bridge Park, and the Paul Henry - Thornapple Trail), as well as one educational property on Norris Rd.

Historic Charlton Parkcharltonpark
Historic Charlton Park: Village, Museum and Recreation Area has been a fixture in Barry County since 1936, and is often referred to as the "jewel of Barry County." Situated on 310 acres along the Thornapple Lake, Historic Charlton Park offers many options for the outdoor enthusiast including hiking, boating, swimming and fishing. For more information, visit Historic Charlton Park's website or click here for a map of Charlton Park trails.

McKeown Bridge ParkMcKeownPhoto
McKeown Bridge Park is located southeast of Hastings on the Thornapple River. This park utilizes approximately 23 acres of a 98-acre County parcel which also houses the Barry County-owned Thornapple Manor medical care facility, County Emergency Management Services and 40 acres of farmland. This Park underwent significant improvements completed in 2010 with assistance from a Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund grant.

Click here for a map of McKeown Bridge Park, including improvements made under the 2010 grant and proposed future improvements. To learn more about the park’s facilities, click here.

Paul Henry Thornapple Trail

The Paul HenPHTrail2ry – Thornapple Trail, when complete, will be a 42 mile multi-use recreation trail, from Grand Rapids to Vermontville, Michigan. The trail is being constructed on or near a former railroad corridor. Some sections of the trail are completed, some are in development and some are in the proposal or conceptual stage

The route of this trail passes through farmlands, woodlands and small towns, along and over rivers and creeks. The scenic highlight of the trail is its close proximity to the Thornapple River. The trail is a four season adventure for the outdoor enthusiast, living healthy and having fun. It passes through a safe and natural environment for individual, family, and organization use.

For more information, visit the Paul Henry Thornapple Trail website or click here for trail maps.

Thornapple Birding Trail
For more information, visit the Thornapple Birding Trail website.

Educational Forest

Barry County owns a 40-acre undeveloped parcel that is managed by Barry County Michigan State University Extension through its 4-H program as a living classroom. This property is currently not open to the public.