OWOSSO — There’s a new public fishing dock on Hopkins Lake at Collamer Park, and the lake will soon be stocked with fish.
Using $28,000 from Owosso parks millage revenues, the city has replaced the old wooden dock with a larger metal dock built by a Shiawassee County company.
The T-shaped, floating dock has a gangway that’s 48-by-6 feet, and a 36-by-12-foot platform. It is expected to need less maintenance and last longer.
“We know the old dock was popular for many years. We hope residents will enjoy the larger, new dock,” said Amy Fuller, assistant to the city manager.
The old dock, donated, built and installed in 1995 by members of the Shiawassee-Owosso Kiwanis Club, sagged in the middle and was generally in poor condition.
“It was time to be replaced,” Fuller said, adding that one of the original dock builders who met her at the lake one day told her that in his view the city needed to tear it down.
The project was bid out by city officials and went to the low bidder, Feighner Boat Lifts and Docks in Woodhull Township.
As sections of the dock were completed, they were transported to the city’s Department of Public Works. Owosso DPW crews installed the entire dock in a single day — without getting wet.
“No one had to get into the water,” Fuller said. “There were five or six guys standing on the first panel, and then they’d float in the next piece.”
In addition, the Owosso Masonic Lodge No. 81 donated $2,500 to stock Hopkins Lake with fish.
The entire amount will go toward purchasing fish for the lake early this summer, Fuller said, enhancing dangler’s chances of hooking a big one.
Fuller is considering going with bluegill and large mouth bass, or other types of fish, she said.
The dock has served as a popular spot for local fishing since the 1990s. Fuller, who has made many trips to Hopkins Lake since the project launched last July, said every time she visited there were adults and children with lines in the water.
Fuller said she asked several fisherman how long the dock should be, and based her purchasing decisions on their suggestions.
Speaking on behalf of the city Parks and Recreation Commission, Chairman Andrew Workman said: “I want to thank our community members. Your votes to approve the millage supporting Parks made this new dock possible.”
“It is our hope it will provide many years of enjoyment at Hopkins Lake,” he continued, “and we plan to deliver other improvements for the community’s use and recreation in the near future.”
Motorized boats aren’t allowed on Hopkins Lake, though canoes and kayaks are welcome. That’s why the dock is intended primarily for fishing, Fuller said.