Governor Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced today that 16 communities were awarded a 2021 Recreation Passport grant. The Recreation Passport grant program started 11 years ago. It aims to boost visitation and funding for Michigan’s state parks as well as local, community parks and trails. This year’s grants include a total investment of $1,955,300.

“The Recreation Passport gives Michigan residents and visitors access to our state’s unmatched natural resources and outdoor recreation opportunities all year long,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “Every Recreation Passport purchase provides grant funding that helps communities bring to life the kind of modern, inclusive outdoor spaces that welcome residents of all abilities.”

The parks across the state not only provide enhanced quality of life for residents, they are an important cog in the tourism engine that helps drive our state’s economy. Michigan’s outdoor recreation industry supports billions in state Gross Domestic Product. It sustains 126,000 jobs and over $4.7 billion in wages and salaries in the state. On average, every $1 invested in land conservation leads to $4 in economic benefit.

2021 Recreation Passport Grant Awards

  • Hays Dog Park to the City of Watervliet in Berrien County ($71, 600)
  • Platte River Park Boardwalk and Fishing Platforms to Homestead Township in Benzie ($150,000)
  • Tournament/ Tiger Paw Park Improvements to Hillman Township in Montmorency ($150,000)
  • Sturgis Splash Pad to City of Sturgis in St. Joseph ($150,000)
  • Marlette Pool House Renovations to City of Marlette in Sanilac ($150,000)
  • Ackerman Park Walking Path Improvements to Village of Elkton in Huron ($150,000)
  • Hickory Creek Park Pavilion to Village of Stevensville in Berrien ($150,000)
  • Aldrich Park Improvements to Village of Capac in St. Clair ($45,000)
  • Chancy Lewis Park Renovations to Village of Lawton in Van Buren ($74,000)
  • Skandia Township Hall Park Renovation to Skandia Township in Marquette ($142,500)
  • Teal Lake Water Trail to City of Ishpeming in Marquette ($114,000)
  • Shalda Park Improvements to Village of Empire in Leelanau ($150,000)
  • Casco Township Belle River Park Picnic Area to Casco Township in St. Clair ($56,200)
  • Frances Park Accessibility and Shade Structure Improvements to City of Lansing in Ingham ($150,000)
  • Development of Campground at Oasis Lake Park to Arenac County ($112,000)
  • Michigan Beach Upland Renovation and Development to City of Charlevoix in Charlevoix ($139,500)

Selected projects were scored and selected from a field of 53 grant applications seeking $5.9 million in local funding. The application period for the next round of Recreation Passport grant funding opens in early 2022, with applications due April 1. Learn more about the program and application materials at

Author: Lisa Diggs

Lisa Diggs is a writer, speaker, entrepreneur, business consultant, avid traveler, and founder of The Catalyst Company, LLC, Michigan Positivity Project, and Buy Michigan Now.