YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Mill Creek MetroParks announced Thursday that it will open Lakes Newport and Glacier for public use on March 1. The regular boating and fishing season for Mill Creek MetroParks runs March 1 to November 30.
The two lakes have been closed since July 2015, when concerns about pollution from sewer runoff surfaced after massive fish kills in the area. Another of the park’s lakes, Lake Cohasset, was never open to the public.
Ryan Tekac, director of the Environmental Health Division, said the lakes are now safe, but he said e. Coli levels could again be elevated by heavy rainfall. He said signs will be posted through the park — describing the 24 to 96-hour time frame in which e. Coli levels can be elevated after heavy rains.
“It’s providing as much information as we can so that people can make the choice for themselves,” Tekac said.
He added that studies done on the lakes concluded that during stretches of warm, dry weather, the water quality of Lakes Newport and Glacier are fine.
“When it’s not heavy rain, and when you have a lot of sunshine, the lake does perform fine,” he said. “It does recover after a rainfall event.”
Privately-owned canoes, kayaks and boats are permitted on Lake Glacier and Lake Newport. Boat rentals will be available at both the Lake Glacier Boathouse and the Lake Newport Boathouse from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
Fishing is permitted on Lake Glacier and Lake Newport, and in waters south of the Lake Newport and between Lake Glacier Dam and Lake Cohasset Dam. Fishing is also permitted at Yellow Creek Park.
Fishing licenses are required to fish in Mill Creek MetroParks. For more details and rules and regulations pertaining to fishing and boating, visit “Boating & Fishing” on the Mill Creek MetroParks website.
“We’re excited to have the lakes back open and to have another recreation opportunity for residents. I know many visitor missed using the lakes last year and we look forward to a safe and active year on the water,” Mill Creek Park Executive Director Aaron Young said.