City of Ionia

Parks and Recreation

Enriching the Quality of Life In the City of Ionia.

Meet the Parks and Recreation Director

Matt Painter, City of Ionia Parks and Recreation DirectorMatt 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. 

Current Responsibilities 
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

Adult and Youth Recreation Programs

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.

Events and Other

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:

  • Wednesday, October 10th, at 5:30PM - 7:30PM, IHS sports lobby
  • Tuesday, October 16th, at 5:30PM - 7:30PM, IHS sports lobby.

Ionia Armory Community Center

Ionia Armory Community CenterSpecial 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.

Fred Thwaites Grand River Trail

City of Ionia Fred Thwaites Grand River TrailAmenities 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.

Recreation Program Information and Registration Forms

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.

Flag Football, Boys and Girls will learn the skills of flag football including running, passing, teamwork, and sportsmanship. Age 4-/1st grade = Div. 1, and 2nd/3rd grade = Div. 2 . Registration has ended for the Fall 2018 season.

Download Document:
Flag Football Game Schedule

Boys and Girls ages 4 to 10. Games are played on the Soccer fields in front of the Ionia High School. Practices begin the week of August 20th. Shin guards are required. Cleat shoes are optional. Games begin Sept. 6, 2018. Registration has ended for Fall 2018 season.

Download Documents:
Soccer Game Schedule U6
Soccer Game Schedule U8
Soccer Game Schedule U10

Boys and Girls coed teams. Division 1 is for ages 4, 5 and 6 years old. Division 2 is for ages 4,8, and 9 years old. Registration has ended for the Spring 2017 season.

Download Document:
Lil' Hoopers March Madness Info Flyer 2019 (PDF)
Go to Link:
Program Registration Form

MISSION: To provide and establish a wholesome youth tackle football league that promotes sportsmanship and fair play. Where all players get an opportunity to play each game and the emphasis is teaching character, athletic and social skills, and a healthy attitude. That winning is not important objective. Where coaches teach and lead through example.

Go to Link:
Mid-Michigan Pony Football League (Youth)

Tae Kwon Do, promotes Self Defense, Fitness, Health, Well-Being, and Strength. Instructed classes meet in September through June. There are no classes in July and August.

Download Document:
Tae Kwon Do Flyer
Go to Link:
Program Registration Form, Tae Kwan Do

ZUMBA: A fitness class combining Latin/International dancing with other types of dance for an extra fun-filled hour of exercise. Zumba is for everyone! All ages and levels can do ZUMBA! Mondays and Wednesdays 6pm at Emerson Elementary School. $5 per class.

Download Document:
ZUMBA Fitness Information Flyer
Go to Link:
Program Registration Form, Zumba

Department and Facilities Information, Documents, Forms and Links

The City of Ionia Five-Year Community Parks and Recreation Plan 2012-2017 has been prepared according to the requirements of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Grants Management Division.

Download Document:
Parks and Recreation Master Plan, 2012-2017 (PDF)

Hey Kids! You can write a letter to Santa Claus, and put it into the 'Big Red Mailbox" located in front of the Armory Community Building, on Main Street, in downtown Ionia, for delivery to the North Pole!

Download Document:
Santa Claus letter info and letter template (PDF)

Balice Park

Balice ParkBalice Park is located on East Adams Street and offers swings, handicap accessible play structures, and a picnic area.

Fun Forest / McConnell Park

Fun Forest / McConnell ParkFun Forest / McConnell Park is located on East Washington Street and provides a multi-station wood playground, a picnic area, a pavilion (can be reserved), and shaded play areas.

Hale Park

Hale ParkHale Park is located at the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Division Street, and offers a play structure, bathrooms for year-round use, three full basketball courts, a picnic area, a climber, and swings.

Perry Park

Perry ParkPerry 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. The park honors Mr. Gerrard F. Perry.

McCann Park

 McCann ParkMcCann Park is located at the corner of Price Street and Hackett Street, and provides swings, a play structure, and a picnic area.

Robinson Park

Robinson ParkRobison 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, a picnic area, and is handicap accessible.

Shattuck Park

Shattuck Park is located on Colby Street and provides a picnic area, swings, and a basketball court.

Skate Park

City of Ionia Skate ParkSkate 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.

City Calendar

City of Ionia City Calendar

114 North Kidd Street  Map
Ionia, Michigan 48846
Phone 616-527-4170

Fax 616-527-0810

Business Hours:
Monday - Friday, 8:00a - 4:00p
(Holiday exception)


For local news and information,
tune to WION AM 1430/FM 92.7
or read the Ionia Sentinel-Standard