Seal of Dane County County of Dane
Dane County Land & Water Resources Department

Dane County Parks to Begin Master Planning Process for McCarthy Youth & Conservation County Park

July 07, 2014
Contact: Chris James, Park Planner, 608-224-3763
Land & Water Resources

Dane County Parks planning staff will begin working on a master plan that will propose future management, recreation use and park facility development for the McCarthy Youth & Conservation County Park.  The County currently owns approximately 260 acres within the recreation park boundary. The planning area will include lands within the park and may also investigate regional resource connections and recreation needs of the surrounding area.   


“The Friends of McCarthy Park have done an outstanding job of helping to increase awareness and use of this County Park, the park master planning process will help further define a unified vision for future management and recreation use of the park,” said Dane County Park Commission Chair Bill Lunney.


The original 180 acres of land for McCarthy Youth and Conservation Park was donated to Dane County in 1974 by Russell and Ella McCarthy.  Ella McCarthy was actively involved with 4-H for 60 years, and Russell wanted the park to be “a place where kids from the city could learn about nature.”


“Dane County strongly supports the outdoor youth aspect of this park and we are excited to hear what ideas come up throughout the planning process that will help the park reach it’s full potential,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi.


A public information meeting to begin the planning process and gather input will be held on Wednesday July 16th, 7:00pm at the Village of Cottage Grove Village Hall, 221 E. Cottage Grove Road, Cottage Grove, WI 53527.


For further information about the upcoming meeting, contact Chris James, Park Planner at 608-224-3763 or