Dane County’s plan to purchase 295 acres in the town of Berry would make the popular Indian Lake County Park the largest recreational park in the county.
Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced Thursday that the county hopes to purchase the $2.9 million property with money from the Dane County Conservation Fund. The expansion would bring the total space of Indian Lake County Park to nearly 800 acres.
The proposal still needs approval from the County Board. The board will vote on the potential purchase in coming weeks.
Parisi said the already popular park has seen an increase in visitors this year during the pandemic, and the purchase would allow the county to “enhance the park’s year-round outdoor offerings.”
The park has areas for hiking, picnicking, cross-country skiing, archery hunting and fishing. It also includes a dog park.
The new property features rolling hills, fields, wooded areas, a stream and six greenhouses, which the county plans to use for park activities. It would allow for the re-routing of trails experiencing erosion and create new options for connecting to the Ice Age National Scenic Trail nearby.
“This new acquisition means more trails, more woods, more prairies, more space for winter recreation, and more time outside for everyone,” the Friends of Indian Lake wrote in a statement. “We fully support Dane County and can’t wait to help maintain and promote this critical new resource.”