Buckeye Scenic Trail Bridge Replacement


GRANVILLE, OHIO (August 26, 2021) The Licking Park District (LPD) replaced the first bridge south of Irving Wick Drive East. It is 10’ wide with ODOT spec railing. The Buckeye Scenic Trail runs from Hopewell Dr to US 40 at Lakewood High School measuring 5.5 miles in length. It is used by many Heath and Lakewood students for training/conditioning of athletes.

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Licking Park District 2021 Paving and Asphalt Sealing Projects

GRANVILLE, OHIO GRANVILLE, OHIO (July 15, 2021) The Licking Park District continues to collaborate with our municipal partners in Newark. We recently completed four bike trail paving projects and an asphalt sealing project.

Two sections of the TJ Evans bike trails in Newark were paved in June. The entire trail from W Main St in Newark to SR 16 (9,768 LnFt) in the Newark corp limit was paved, as well as a section from the historic iron bridge behind the Cherry Valley Hotel to the Gib and Lou Reese bridge over SR 16 (11,669 LnFt). In addition, the Licking Park District paved the TJE trail to the Granville corp limit near Maple Grove Cemetery and a section from Raccoon Valley Rd to Mounts Rd. In total, 5.5 miles of trails were paved in 2021. This compliments 4.5 miles paved in 2020.

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Nature Playscape at Infirmary Mound Park

We have some exciting news to share and we would like your feedback! The survey link is below.

The Licking Park District is proposing a large Nature Playscape at Infirmary Mound Park to be installed in phases over the next few years. Imagine standing at Shelter 5 and looking out onto a beautiful landscape that invites children and adults to explore. Rocks, logs, stumps, and hills beg for climbing and rolling. Slides built into the hill ask for a fast descent. Ropes structures among the trees allow the pretense of an alter ego, be it an explorer or a trapeze artist. A slow moving intermittent stream invites creeking and a search for critters, while a zipline hints at the thrill of danger (in a safe way.  A willow hut allows for secret meetings. Prairie paths of native flowers invite pollinators to visit and encourage kids to become naturalists, while benches allow parents to relax under large inviting trees.  The overall layout, referencing the Alligator Mound, and other playscape features will celebrate Licking County’s unique cultural history. That is the vision of a natural playscape at Infirmary Mound Park.

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A Tale of Two Crayfish Species: Research at the Licking Park District

GRANVILLE, OHIO (April 5, 2021) The Licking Park District actively supports research that informs the management of our natural resources. Invasive species, and the detrimental impact they have on native species, are of particular concern. In 2020, The Ohio State University graduate student Krystal Pocock collected native crayfish from Lobdell Reserve as part of a larger project examining differences in leaf consumption by crayfish in Ohio. Crayfish are important to stream systems as they break down nutrient rich, coarse leaf litter. However, research has suggested streams with non-native crayfish have accelerated leaf litter breakdown and reduced standing leaf litter. This reduces available habitat and food for fish and aquatic macroinvertebrates and may lead to reduced biodiversity.

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Natural Surface Trail Conditions and Equestrian User Impact

GRANVILLE, OHIO (March 16, 2021) Every spring in Central Ohio, rain will be in the forecast, LOTS of rain. And every spring, the Park District faces the challenge of determining when trails are capable of handling the impact of horse traffic. Throughout the spring season, trails tend to be more saturated and hold more water, sometimes taking days to dry. Riding horses on muddy trails increases erosion. Once ruts are formed, they are negatively impacted by more travel and water. Because of this, occasional closures to horses are required. We ask that our equestrian friends assist us in maintaining our trails by avoiding trails that are closed to horses. Trail status can be checked on our website, Facebook, Twitter and our 24-7 Trail Hotline.

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Licking Park District Board of Park Commissioners Selects Kiracofe as 2021 Chairman

GRANVILLE, OHIO (February 5, 2021) Jim Kiracofe was again selected by fellow Park Commissioners as the 2021 Chairman. He served as Chairman in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Mr. Kiracofe has been a member of the Board since 2015. He is a former District Program Administrator of the Licking Soil & Water Conservation District and still actively farms in the Utica area. Mr. Kiracofe’s leadership has guided the Board and Park District through the continuing COVID pandemic and he works closely with the Director in accomplishing the mission of the Licking Park District.

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2020 Carnivore Study

GRANVILLE, OHIO (January 19, 2021) A pilot study to assess the presence/absence of bobcats, red fox, gray fox, and coyotes within Licking County was recently led by Dr. Shauna L. Weyrauch of the Ohio State University at Newark. Bobcats (Lynx rufus) in particular were of interest as they are a recovering species in Ohio after being extirpated in the mid-1800s. Currently little is known about their abundance and distribution within Licking County, which sits on the north-west edge of their range. Multiple parks managed by the Licking Park District were selected for observation using non-baited camera trapping stations set up along game trails.

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Thermoplastic Mile Markers on TJ Evans Trail


GRANVILLE, OHIO (November 17, 2020) The Licking Park District in conjunction with the Licking County Engineer’s office recently completed installation of thermoplastic mile markers on the TJ Evans trail from Johnstown to W Main St in Newark. The markings followed ODOT standards of starting from West to East. The marking began at the trailhead in Johnstown off Jersey St and continued for 14 miles to W. Main St in Newark.

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