August 1, 2014 at 7:23 am

Lansing's biggest park reopens after 28 years

Lansing — Lansing’s largest park, which closed more than a quarter-century ago when industrial waste was discovered, is back open.

The city quietly reopened Crego Park earlier this summer, but officially marked its rebirth at a ceremony Thursday, the Lansing State Journal reported.

Several current and former city officials and more than a dozen relatives of ex-Mayor Ralph Crego took part in a ribbon-cutting.

City officials used a $500,000 grant from the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund and $250,000 from Lansing’s parks millage fund to add a parking area, a fishing pier and a launching facility for canoes and kayaks.

“It’s great to see kids ride down the River Trail, see the opening to the lake and say, ‘I never knew this existed,’” Brett Kaschinske, the city’s parks director, told the newspaper. “To be able to open that (park) up and spread the word that there are these great natural resources and all these activities available, that’s what it’s all about.”

The 200-acre park was called Red Cedar Flood Basin Park before being renamed in honor of Crego in 1970, Kaschinske said.

Crego Park was closed in 1986 after 200 drums of paint sludge and other toxic waste were found on the grounds.