Work begins on Hanson Hills Recreation Area lodge project
Caleb Casey | Managing Editor
Local construction company McClain and Sons – the winning bidder for the project – recently started working on the lodge at Hanson Hills Recreation Area, stripping away the old siding and repairing the roof.
Crawford County voters – during the November 2018 general election – approved a millage to pay for the renovation project. Justin Andre, Director of Operations for Grayling Recreation Authority (the governing body for Hanson Hills), said the millage generated approximately $295,000.
Grayling Recreation Authority is approaching the project in two phases. Phase one, Andre said, involves replacement of the lodge’s roof, siding, windows, and doors. GRA is hoping to have money left for phase two, which would include “concrete repairs, sidewalk, and possibly parking lot,” Andre said.
“It’s going really well. We’ve already got the back side of the roof shingled,” Andre said.
Workers will begin siding the building after the new windows are installed, Andre said. They’re hoping to be finished with the first part of the project before June, a busy month for Hanson Hills.
“June is full of events,” Andre said. “We’re hoping the phase one project will be complete. Our deadline was end of May. As of right now, things are moving along really well and it looks like it will be done early to mid-May.”
In June, Hanson Hills Recreation Area has the Hanson Hills Challenge Mountain Bike Race, the Ragnar Trail Relay, and the Michigan Traditional Bowhunters Jamboree on its calendar of events, in addition to being open for disc golf, running, hiking, and bicycling.
(The Hanson Hills Challenge is a Michigan Mountain Biking Association points series race slated for June 2. The Ragnar Trail Relay is expected to draw more than a thousand runners on June 15 and 16. The Michigan Traditional Bowhunters Jamboree is an archery-themed event scheduled for June 22 and 23.)
Andre said Grayling Recreation Authority wanted to upgrade the lodge while maintaining the heritage of the facility.
“There’s a lot of history,” Andre said. “We’re trying to keep the integrity of the lodge.”
Andre said the improvements will “make a world of difference in the long run, make the lodge last another 30 or 40 years.”