Enriching the Quality of Life in the City of Ionia.
Matt Painter has worked with the City of Ionia in Parks and Recreation since July 2003. Mr. Painter was previously employed with Gus Macker.
Mr. Painter is a graduate of Ionia High School and a 1996 graduate of Ferris State University with a Bachelors Degree in Recreation and Leisure Management.
As the Director of Ionia Parks and Recreation, Mr. Painter is dedicated to the department's "Mission, Vision, and Value" statement. This is a commitment to provide a comprehensive system of year-round quality recreation and leisure services designed to meet the needs of the community, including exceptional programming for health and fitness, and personal enjoyment and enrichment.
The commitment goes on to maintain and improve parks and facilities so that they are attractive, safe, and meet the community's physical and recreational needs. Mr. Painter oversees ten city parks, a river trail, softball fields, and the Armory Community Center with a gymnasium and two conference rooms.
Parks and Recreation Director's Office Hours:
Monday - Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Phone: (616) 523-1800
Fax: (616) 523-1803
The City of Ionia Parks and Recreation department, is located inside the Armory Community Center, at 439 West Main Street, Ionia!
The City of Ionia Parks and Recreation Department, offers recreational programs for adults and youths! Look inside the 'Gold file cabinet' on this page to find program information and registration forms for participation. Note; recreational programs will not appear in the gold file cabinet until it becomes available for registration.
The City of Ionia is pleased to offer a variety of recreational events. Check the red file cabinet on this page for more information.
Also; Available through Ionia High School
*Basketball Competitive Travel League, a youth program of the 'Red Cedar Hoops' is offered through Ionia Public Schools, for Girls and Boys divisions in 3rd/4th grades, 5th grade, 6th grade, 7th grade, and 8th grade. An Intermediate sized (28.5 in.) basketball is used. Teams travel to other towns and will be separated into geographical divisions.There are only two days in which you can register:
Download a File:
Ionia Athletics Youth Basketball Travel League Info
Special Events. Whether it's a conference, party, meeting, or class, we can help. We have three rooms available at the Ionia Armory Community Center that you can rent for any event. Alcohol is allowed with a permit and liability insurance rider. The center is equipped with special needs accessibility ramps and an elevator. The Armory Community Center is a non-smoking facility.
The gymnasium is ideal for receptions and it seats 250 people. Tables and chairs are provided and set up for you. The Lions Room accommodates 20 people and can be used as conference style seating or a smaller group party. The American Bumper Room accommodates 30 people and can be used as conference style seating or a smaller group party.
Get Forms, Learn More. Check the red file cabinet on this page to download the Armory Community Center Rental Contract, Rental Rates and Rental Rules and Regulations.
Amenities at the Fred Thwaites Grand River Trail include Picnicking, Boardwalk, Bridges, a Fishing Deck, and a Boat Dock. Download a Trail map and see a montage of Trail photos at the links below.
Balice Park is located on East Adams Street and offers swings, handicap accessible play structures, and a picnic area.
Located on East Main Street, just beyond the 'Ventra' manufacturing facility. This City park is nestled alongside Prairie Creek. This City park offers a playground area and a pavilion. This City park is also the site of 'The Camping Ground of the 21st Michigan Infantry.' A dedication plaque is placed at this park in honor of the regiments gallant service in the Civil War.
Hale Park is located at the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Division Street, and offers a playground structure, bathrooms for year-round use, three full basketball courts, a picnic area, a climber, and swings.
Harper Park is located on Bayard Street just west of Cleveland Street. This City park features a playground for the kids, and a nice pavilion, and a ball field, in which you can rent either through the Ionia Parks and Recreation department.
Use the information and forms here to learn about and register for the City of Ionia Recreation programs of your choice. The list is updated seasonally, so please check back for currently listed programs.
Men and Women eighteen years or older. Divisions: Men’s A league, Men’s B league, Co-Ed, Women's. We must have four teams in a division to run a league. Men’s A and B may inter-league play depending on number of teams. If we do not have a CO-ED or Women’s league those teams can play in the Men’s B. Games will be held at the Ionia Middle School Gym. See flyer for details.
For: Boys and Girls, in 1st-4th Grades. Practices are held on Saturdays at the Ionia Middle school gymnasium. Games are played on Mondays and/or Wednesdays at the Ionia Armory Community Center Gymnasium. Registration has ended.
Learn fundamental Skills to play Soccer: Passing, Receiving a ball, Trapping, Dribbling, Shooting, Precision. Kids will learn teamwork, perseverance, and decision making. This program is for Boys and Girls ages 4 to 10. Four Divisions: Under 6 / Under 8 / 10 and Under / 13 and Under. Practices and Games begin in April. Games are played in front of the Ionia High School on the soccer fields. Soccer balls and goals are provided by the Parks and Recreation Department. Shin guards are required. Cleat shoes are optional.
Boys and Girls will learn the skills of Basketball including dribbling, shooting, team work and sportsmanship. Divisions and Teams are Coed. Ages 4, 5 and 6 comprise Division 1. Ages 7,8 and 9 comprise Division 2.
Ramos Institute Tae Kwon Do, promotes Self Defense, Fitness, Health, Well-Being, and Strength. CLASSES ARE NO LONGER VIRTUAL! Experience the skill sets of Martial Arts with in-person instruction located at the Ionia Armory. Instructor will work on basic techniques, kicks, and punches. Contact Ramos Institute 2nd dan Black belt instructor, Mr. Kevin Cashen at 989-981-6780. Find out more about us at www.RamosInstitute.com
The City of Ionia Five-Year Community Parks and Recreation Plan 2019-2023 has been prepared according to the requirements of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Grants Management Division.
Dog Park Coming Soon
The City of Ionia has received funding from a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) to construct a dog park downtown near the corner of Adams and Steele Streets. The dog park will cost $375,000 with 80% of the funds provided by the grant. See the site plan and renderings provided below to visualize what the park will look like.
Fred Thwaites Grand River Trail Improvements
Another grant was revived by the City for the reconstruction of the Fred Thwaites Grand River Trail. The expected project cost is about $540,000 with 50% of the funding being provided by a Michigan Department of Natural Resources Trust Fund Grant. The improvements include the resurfacing of 3.2 miles of trail, wayfinding signage, trailhead improvements, and paved parking. See the site plan below to view the scope of work for the project.
McCann Park is located at the corner of Price Street and Hackett Street, and provides swings, a play structure, and a picnic area.
McConnell Park/Fun Forest is located on East Washington Street and provides a multi-station wood playground, a picnic area, a pavilion (can be rental reserved), and shaded play areas.
Meijer Skate Park is located at the Ionia Free Fair Grounds, Highway M-66 (Dexter Street).
Skate Park Rules
These facilities are not supervised and the City of Ionia will not be responsible for any injuries. A parent or guardian should accompany younger children. Skate at your own risk. The skate park is a City of Ionia Park. No bicycles are allowed in the skate park. All skaters should wear approved equipment including a helmet, knee, wrist, and elbow pads. Safety gear is strongly recommended. Keep safety in mind at all times while you skate. Be respectful of other skaters. No swearing, no littering, no glass, no weapons. Please put trash in the provided containers. Music content must be appropriate for all park users, and the volume shall be in conformance with City ordinances. Violation(s) of any City or State law, ordinance, or skate rules will result in a loss of park privileges. The Skate Park and all City of Ionia Parks close at 10 p.m., unless otherwise indicated.
Perry Park is located at the corner of Jackson Street and Lincoln Avenue (M-21) and offers two tennis courts, two pickle ball courts, a playground, restrooms , an open field for play, walking, lounging, and a parking area. This park honors Mr. Gerrard F. Perry.
Riverside Park is located off Dexter Street (M-66) on the south side of the fairgrounds near the bank of the 'Grand River.'
This location is scenic, and provides optimum view of the Grand river, the historical floral building, and the steel pedestrian bridge that crosses the 'Grand River.' Plus; there is the 'Fred Twaites rivertrail' to walk, jog, run, skate, or ride a bicycle. No ATV's allowed.
Robison Park is located North of M-21 on State Street/M-66 and Fargo Street, and offers a play structure, swings, a climber, one full basketball court, and a brand new pavilion completed in June 2019 (can be rental reserved) picnic area, and is handicap accessible.
Shattuck Park is located on Colby Street and provides a picnic area, swings, and a basketball court.
Located at the corner of Adams Street and Dexter Street (M-66). This city park features; a playground, a splash pad, and a covered pavilion that provides picnic tables, and restrooms. The 'Frederick Meijer Grand River Rail Trail' is adjacent to this park.