2017 was to be the fourth year the Mott Park Recreation Area participated in the Flint River Flotilla. For the past three years, the Mott Park Recreation Area has been the landing point for the Flint River Flotilla, an event sponsored by the Flint River Watershed Coalition to showcase the recreational opportunities offered by the Flint River.
This year, the Flotilla had been scheduled on Saturday, August 5, from 1 PM until 4 PM. Participants were asked to park their cars at the recreation area, on the grass on the Sunset Avenue side, across from the McLaren Hospital parking structure. From there, shuttles were to deliver you to Tenacity Brewing on Grand Traverse where the flotilla will begin. You would have ended your float and exited the river back at the recreation area where you would have picked up your vehicle. Registration was $10/person (children 12 and under are free) or $30/family.
Unfortunately, the organizers called off the Flotilla for this year because river dredging downtown to prepare for the removal of the downtown dams was making the water too muddy. Fortunately, the program sponsors all agreed to let the watershed coalition use their funds to contract for a plan to install a permanent canoe and kayak landing in The Mott Park Recreation Area. The first draft of that plan is now complete and will be reviewed shortly. We expect the watershed coalition to take the lead on securing funding for this effort and hope to break ground on this in spring, 2018.
The recreation area is proud to surround a beautiful stretch of the Flint River and is honored to provide landing facilities to the organizers. Last year, the 2016 event attracted over 250 participants, up 25% from the previous year. Many of them parked their vehicles on the hill above the river banks on the old 4th fairway across from McLaren Hospital. They were shuttled up to the Tenacity Brewery on Grand Traverse, where the put in to the river starting at 1:00 PM and floated and paddled back downstream to the recreation area to retrieve their vehicles. This is the location we expect to be developed for the permanent canoe and kayak landing.
We look forward to many more years of participation in the Flint River Flotilla and we hope to soon have a permanent canoe and kayak landing for use by the Flotilla and by anyone wishing to cruise on the Flint River.