There is a new whitewater park coming up in New Hampshire which is a much-anticipated project for its residents.
A 13-acre area has been dedicated to developing the Mill City Park at Franklin Falls where visitors can go kayaking and whitewater rafting. To top that up, the adjacent 21-acres of conservation land will be opened up to the public for biking, hiking and climbing.
The park will offer free admission to visitors and according to the creators is being designed to bring the community closer to the Winnipesaukee River.
Construction will begin in July 2021 on what is being touted to be the first whitewater park in New England. A part of the park will be operational in September.
The construction might fully wrap up only in 2022, however, this summer, visitors will be able to enjoy the campsites and nature trails. There will be as many as 20 to 30 cabin and tent campsites as well.
Initial stages of development will also involve building parking lots and two sets of standing waves in the Winnipesaukee. For the following year, plans are afoot to refurbish the Trestle Bridge, an old railroad bridge, into a footbridge that connects the Winnipesaukee River Trail to Mill City Park and the downtown area.
Kayakers have been using the river for years but what’s different about the water park according to its founder, Marty Parichand is that there are plans to build surf waves and not rapids, to create the feel of surfing in the ocean right in the middle of a river.
He added that the public can also avail of the facilities provided by Outdoor New England in Franklin to kit them out with the equipment required for the outdoor adventure activities.
Franklin City Manager Judie Milner said of this project, “We are re-inventing ourselves in the outdoor recreation community and the whitewater park is the anchor, but we have several other things going on.”
Along with boogie boarding, surfing and kayaking – which will be open all year round – there will be other outdoor recreational activities like a separate water play area for kids and an amphitheatre for live performances, gatherings and events. The park will also feature some historical sites reminiscent of the old mill town that the region once used to be.
For New Hampshire residents, the non-profit park is on its way to becoming a highly coveted picnic spot.
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