Sweet Arrow Lake County Park Property Improvements
July 2007 to 2009
Major Park Upgrades Utilizing Grants from the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
DCNR grants were matched in part by the County of Schuylkill Environmental Endowment Fund earnings and the Friends of Schuylkill Parks and Recreation, Kay Russell, President
•The entrance road to the park was upgraded significantly and paved. It is properly drained utilizing environmentally friendly stormwater infiltration techniques.
•A Children’s playground was added partially funded by a grant from the Alcoa Foundation.
•ADA compliant curbing and sidewalk was added in appropriate areas.
•Five raingardens were installed to handle stormwater through infiltration.
•Two parking lots were created for proper handling of visitor’s vehicles.
•Several plantings of native trees and shrubs enhance the appearance of the landscape.
Pennsylvania Conservation Corps accomplishments since July 2007- Sponsored by the Schuylkill Conservation District
The PCC is administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry.
•The windows and doors were wrapped with aluminum flashing to protect the exterior wood.
•The existing shutters were duplicated and placed on the Clubhouse.
•The former outhouse was converted to a canoe and kayak shed to house 10 boats.
•Oscars’ Grove and Chickagami Beach were brushed and grubbed so that they could be mowed and used by the public.
•Storage cabinets were fabricated and installed in the basement environmental education workshop.
•Secure storage space was created by building and placing doors in the area below the porch.
•400 feet of boardwalk was constructed from the Clubhouse area to the Stine bridge, which spans the waterfall.
•5 Picnic tables were constructed for use in the park.
•The restrooms and walls in the Clubhouse were painted.
•2 historical PPL signs were restored and hung in the basement.
•New exterior restrooms are currently under construction.
Eagle Scout Projects
•A wildlife blind was built in the wetlands by C.J. Ferguson.
•A 38 foot long bridge was built on Berger Dam Trail by Nathan Whitehead. Contributions for the project came from Sweet Arrow Lake Conservation Association (SALCA) and Northern Swatara Creek Watershed Association (NSCWA).
•Four benches were constructed and placed by Chad Brommer.
•Major landscaping to the rear of the Clubhouse was completed by Walker Gluntz.
Sweet Arrow Lake Conservation Association – Denise Donmoyer, President
•The kitchen in the Clubhouse was painted.
•4 benches were built, paid for, and placed on the dam breast.
•Over 150 trees, shrubs and flowers were purchased, planted and mulched by SALCA in 2007-8.
•At least 5 birdhouses were placed in the Park.
•Blinds were purchased and installed on 14 windows in the Clubhouse.
WorkForce Crew – Coordinated by Careerlink
•Tons of rocks and stones were cleared from the newly renovated lawn areas.
•A bridge was placed on Berger Dam Trail. A channel to divert water was dug.
•A hole was dug near the picnic pavilion and the picnic grill was returned to service.
•500 square feet of underbrush was cleared for future picnic areas and on trails.
•2 loads of mulch were placed where needed.
Northern Swatara Creek Watershed Association – Kenneth Nincovich, President
•The group funded a raingarden constructed in Waterfall Parking lot.
• NSCWA constructed the accessible fishing trail from the dry hydrant parking area to the “Point” in front of the Clubhouse. This was built in memory of Rolland “Ronny” Wiggins. This project was also funded by the Department of Community and Economic Development (Rep. Tim Seip)
The Friends of Schuylkill Parks and Recreation – Kay Russell, President
•In addition to providing matching funds to the DCNR grant, the “Friends” provided funding for the “Point” amphitheater project which included the retaining walls. In 2006, through the generosity of the James M. and Margaret V. Stine Foundation and donations from other community supporters, the “Friends” provided the funds to build the bridge over the waterfalls and install the lighted pathway leading to the Falls from the Waterfalls Parking lot.
Other group or individual accomplishments
•A ramp was built to make the dock at the Fish and Boat Access. (BASS clubs and Cor Engelen)
•11 benches and a Pergola were built for the Park by John Keesey.
•Prison work release inmates cleared brush on the dam breast and along the Waterfall lot entrance, and at Bergers Dam. Coordinated by Scott Siket, Judge Baldwin and Earl Matz.
• The 2006 Schuylkill Leadership Class provided a sign for the park. The 2007 Schuylkill Leadership Class paid for and helped construct a pavilion at the Waterfall Parking Lot. The class also assembled 3 picnic table kits prepared by the PCC. The 2009 Class funded and laid pavers for an amphitheater at the “Point” and planted hundreds of trees. (Schuylkill Chamber of Commerce, Lori Kane & Robert Carl). The “Friends” group provided a portion of the funding for the 2007 and 2009 Leadership projects.
•A gazebo, built by Schuylkill Technology students, was funded by the Schuylkill Builders Association. (Kay Brown, Builders Association and Tim McGinley of Schuylkill Technology)
•Schuylkill Stampede 4-H Club and the Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts assisted in the planting of trees.
•Electric service was installed to the pavilion and funded by the Schuylkill Conservation District, Paul Lohin, Chairman.
•The Sweet Arrow Lake Park Board, Earl Matz Chairman, purchased a large cooler for the Clubhouse kitchen.
•The PSU Master Gardeners and a student group from Blue Mountain High School planned and planted the butterfly garden near the playground.
•Streambank Stabilization and Fish Habitat Improvement Project was completed below the falls by the county through a DEP Growing Greener grant in cooperation with the PA Fish and Boat Commission.
•Conveyer belt diversions (water control structures) were installed by the Conservation District through the state’s Dirt and Gravel Road Program.
Sweet Arrow Lake County Park
2010 Improvements to Sweet Arrow Lake County Park
The large pavilion was refurbished and made HC accessible. The new restrooms are now functional. A drinking fountain was added near the playground.
A grant from DCNR and County Environmental Endowment proceeds made the pavilion project possible. The Pennsylvania Conservation Corps built the restrooms and the nearby kiosk.
The Amphitheater at the "Point" received seating for 90 thanks to the hard work of the Pennsylvania Conservation Corps. Funding was provided by the Corps and the Schuylkill Conservation District.
Ducks Unlimited placed a memorial gazebo in the Fish and Boat recreation area.
Drinking fountain near the playground
Sweet Arrow Lake County Park applied for a DCNR grant in April 2016, to fund a project to revitalize the Waterfall Parking Lot below the dam breast. The grant, along with matching funds from the County of Schuylkill and the Friends of Schuylkill Parks and Recreation, would allow for major upgrades to this popular portion of the park. The work planned includes:
•Resurfacing, paving, and landscaping the existing gravel parking lot
•Large pavilion with attached kitchen for rentals
•ADA accessible flush bathrooms
•Upgraded water and electricity utilities
•Playground if budget allows
If you have any questions of concerns, or would like to show your support and get involved, please contact: