Park System History
Then & Now
Favorite Parks, Programs & Memories
Monmouth Cove Marina
. Purchased the 10-acre marina in 1990 with Green Acres funding as part of the county’s Port Monmouth realignment and Pews Creek reconstruction. The marina opened in1991.
Sunnyside Recreation Area
. It was dedicated February 8, 1990 and now houses the Park System’s equestrian facilities.
Charleston Springs Golf Course
. The two golf courses were designed by noted architect Mark Mungeam, and later land parcels were added for open space, trails and wildlife preservation. The North Course opened for limited play by October 1998; the South Course and clubhouse opened May of 2002. A short game area and a trail with parking lot were added in 2006.
Manasquan River Greenway
. Purchased first 17 acres (3 parcels) in 1990 to protect the river and connect the three park properties located along river:
Turkey Swamp Park
Howell Park Golf Course
. Parcels along the river have been acquired incrementally ever since.
Henry Hudson Trail
. Northern section of trail opened in 1992. Major portions of the 12-mile south section opened in 2005. Popamora Point and the Atlantic Highlands section of the northern trail opened in 2009.
Friends of the Parks
County Open Space Plan
completed (first Plan in 1970, amendments in 1983).
Automated Golf Tee Time Reservation Service begins operating
Annual Park System attendance is 2,911,412; 181,467 rounds of golf played at county’s four golf courses; 8,490 county park acres preserved, 227,121 people participated in programs
First agency in nation to be accredited by the Commission for the Accreditation of Park & Recreation Agencies (CAPRA)
Fisherman’s Cove Conservation Area
. The Park System purchased 35 acres of this site along the Manasquan River with Green Acres funding. Manasquan gave the Park System the additional 17 acre parking lot. The bait shop (now used for Park System programs) was a gift from Clement and Ruth Danish on September 3, 1996.
Hominy Hill Golf Course
hosts USGA Women's Amateur Public Links Championship.
First Woods Hollow Classic Mountain Bike Race held.
First Timberbrook Triathlon held.
Voters approve increase in Open Space Tax from $4 million to $10 million per year (Yes 137,998 and No 50,878 or 73%) on November 5, 1996
Annual Park System attendance reaches 3,649,868. There are 56 miles of trails. (from 1996 Annual Report)
Big Brook Park established
. Purchased 378 acre property from the state; it was surplus land from closing of the Marlboro Psychiatric Hospital. This property connects to the southern section of the Henry Hudson Trail.
Big Brook Park
is currently undeveloped.
Wolf Hill Park
Purchased first 91 acre parcel in 1997 from NJ Sports Exhibition Authority; it was formerly part of the racetrack. People using the ball fields at this site continued to do so after purchase. Its Off-leash Dog Area in 2009.
Bel-Aire Golf Course
established. Purchased 78 acre golf course from Hansen & Hansen in 1997; small adjacent parcels added in 2000s for buffer, irrigation ponds and possible expansion. Bel-Aire was dedicated May 17, 1997.
Creative Arts Center
. The Creative Arts Division was formally established.
County Parks reach 10,000 acre mark
DeBois Creek Recreation Area established
. Purchased first 109 acres in 1998 with plans for active recreation. Added 30 acres in 2009. DeBois Creek is currently undeveloped.
Union Transportation Trail established
. Negotiated permanent 15.5 acre easement with JCP&L for 9 miles of former railroad right-of-way in the western portion of the county. In 2004, Park System began purchasing the first in series of parcels for additional trail access.
Gristmill opens at
County Open Space Plan
Perrineville Lake Park
. The Park System purchased the first 91 acres in 1999 along the lake. Then: 131 acres in 2004; 125 acres in 2005; 134 acres and123 acres in 2007; another 92 acres in 2008. Perrineville officially opened in 2007.
Thompson Park Off-leash Dog Area