The Leslie E. Tassell Park, a 3.2-acre park on the Thornapple River, is located just south of Cascade Rd., at 2900 Thornapple River Dr. Construction of the park began in spring 2001 with completion in 2002. The park, situated beneath a variety of mature hardwood trees and beautiful landscaping, boasts an interactive fountain, sculptures, a fire pit, two shelters and a public restroom. Picnic tables and benches are located throughout the park.
Opportunities abound for fishing, canoeing and kayaking, relaxing along the bank of the river or picnicking. The park is near the Cascade Rd. and Thornapple River Dr. pathways, allowing easy access by foot or bicycle. There are two small lots at either end of the park for vehicle traffic.
The following are remarks offered by Leslie E. Tassell (1908-2004) on the occasion of the dedication of the Leslie E. Tassell Park on October 4, 2001.
Let me begin by thanking all of you for coming here today for the dedication of your park.
I am especially honored and so very pleased that you have allowed my name to be given to the park. In a few more months, I will be 94 years old, God willing, and the opportunity to participate in the park's creation is a wonderful birthday present. Thank you.
I hope this becomes a place where people celebrate their families. I encourage parents and grandparents from all over the area to bring children here to fish the river, to play in the fountains, to picnic and just spend time enjoying one each other. Times like these will help make our community a place of strong, moral people. Unfortunately, the tragic events of the past weeks underscore the importance and need for these kind of times together.
The location here on the riverbank is perfect, and for that I must give a special acknowledgement to former Township Supervisor Wendell Champion and former Township Manager Carl Kerekes. They had the foresight ten years ago to go house to house and acquire these parcels of property in the name of the citizens of Cascade.
We can all see how beautiful the township has made the area around 28th Street and Cascade Road, and how it has helped give Cascade a sense of downtown. This park will add immensely to that sense of having a downtown, or more appropriately, a town square. When the people across the street named their restaurant "The Gathering Place" they didn't know just how right they were going to be.
To every one who has participated in helping pay for the park, whether it was in the form of a building or brick, bless you. You have been part of of one of the noblest of enterprises, that of creating something of lasting value. Some of my friends who are here today have made a lifetime pursuit of doing that for all our benefits.
Special thanks, though, must go to Rex and Joyce Kingsland for their wonderful donation of the boardwalk, which gives us our closest contact with the river. And to Bob and Aleica Woodrick for their generous donation of the bronze sculpture "Circle of Peace", by Gary Price. And to my own daughter and her husband, Joyce and Tom Wisner, for the pavilion they provided.
Last, but not least, I want to thank my friend, Mike Julien. He was the one who first approached me on the idea of participating in this park. We had many, many meetings about this and he was the one who really got the ball rolling. Mike and all of the Township staff have done a yeoman's job in getting the park this far along in such a short time. We all thank you, Mike.
We all appreciate any suggestions you have to help us continue to improve and beautify your park, and I thank you again for coming
Rules and Regulations
- Leslie E Tassell Park shall be open to the public between the hours of 8:00 am and 11:00 pm.
- No person shall cut, mutilate, injure overturn, remove, or in any way damage any personal or real property belonging to the park system or Cascade Charter Township.
- No dogs shall be permitted in the park unless on a leash. Owners of dogs shall be held responsible to immediately clean up the area where their dog has defecated.
- No person shall consume or bring into the park any beer, wine, liquor or any other intoxication liquor or controlled substance.
- No person shall post any advertisement, circular or handbill within the park; nor shall any solicitor be allowed to sell or in any other manner dispose of any article in the park.
- No permission shall be given to any vendor or peddler of food, beverages or refreshments unless included as part of a permitted activity in the park.
- Fires shall only be permitted in the community fire ring pursuant to approval by the Township Fire Department. Please call (616) 949-1320.
- No person shall use a skateboard, roller blades, or similar items in any part of the park.
- A Permit to use the Wisner Pavilion for picnics, social gatherings and Weddings shall be limited to groups no more than fifty (50) in total. Reservations are limited to two (2) events per month and are given on a first come first serve basis. Permits can be obtained from the Planning Department no sooner than 11 months prior to the event and must include all information as required by the Picnic/Wedding permit application as adopted by the Township Board.
- The use of sound amplifiers is prohibited at the Park unless a permit has been obtained from the Township as part of an approved event at the Park.
Community Fire Ring
- Be responsible.
- No burning of trash or garbage.
- Do not leave fire unattended.
- Persons under 16 years of age are not allowed to start a fire.
- Notify the Township Fire Department at (616) 949-1320 prior to having a fire.
- Put the fire out when finished.
- Keep fire in the Community fire ring only.
- All fires must be extinguished by 11:00 pm.
- No bonfires.
- Family use only; no large gatherings.
Wisner Pavilion & Terrace Area - Permit Regulations
Map of Tassell Park
- Event is limited to a total of 50 persons.
- Event is limited to a total of four hours.
- Reservations are limited for the Wisner Pavilion and terrace area only, the remainder of the park will be open to the public.
- The Township will allow reservations of the Wisner Pavilion and terrace area two times per month.
- Reservations will be taken on a first come first serve basis.
- There will be no alcoholic beverages present/consumed at Tassell Park.
- You must contact the Buildings and Grounds Department at (616) 949-1500 to move any of the picnic tables from the Pavilion for your event.
- The applicant is responsible for any damages or repairs to the park as a result of the event.
- The use of any amplifiers shall be limited to those that will not disturb the quiet enjoyment of the park. The Township must approve the use of any amplifiers prior to the event.
- The use of any decorations, such as banners or signs shall limited to the area around the pavilion and terrace and anything attached to the pavilion shall be attached using the eyebolts around the perimeter of the overhang at the pavilion.
- All other park rules must be complied with.