As plans to renovate the Watervliet Parcourse continue to move forward, the campaign has beenparcourse approved by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) to receive a matching grant under the Public Spaces, Community Places program.

If the campaign reaches its online fundraising goal of $35,000 through the crowdfunding site by June 30th, the MEDC will match that amount. To date, the campaign has generated over $295,000 in support of the project scheduled for completion this July (2019).

Brandi Smith is Vice President of Philanthropy & President of Lakeland Health Foundations. She says, “We are thrilled that we were chosen to participate in the Public Spaces, Community Places program and we are confident that our community will help us meet our goal so we can receive this generous matching grant from the MEDC.”

The Parcourse is a free community fitness track open to the public from dawn to dusk. Renovations for the track will feature two quarter-mile asphalt loops to accommodate individuals with disabilities that may need to use wheelchairs or other mobility aids. Each loop will also feature four stations with different types of professional grade exercise equipment offering varying degrees of difficulty for all fitness levels.

The project will offer naming opportunities recognized on signage displayed throughout the Parcourse, and tax deductible online donations can be made at the link below. Checks can also be made payable to: Community Hospital Foundation, c/o Parcourse Campaign, 1234 Napier Avenue, St. Joseph, MI 49085. For more information, call (269) 927-5145. Here's the online link:

The Lakeland Hospital, Watervliet PARCOURSE currently is a 1.1 mile walking/running track with a gravel base. After thirty years, the overall site is in disrepair, and the existing track base is worn. This course is currently utilized by therapists and their rehab patients, sports teams, the physical education classes at the Watervliet Middle and High Schools, as well as many residents from a nearby apartment complex. Many other community members have used this track, which is open to the public and free of charge.

The new PARCOURSE will be redesigned with two (2) quarter-mile asphalt loops to accommodate individuals who may use wheelchairs, walkers, or other mobility aids. Along each loop there will be four stations or pods. Each station will include different types of professional grade exercise equipment that offer varying degrees of difficulty for all fitness levels.

As an investor in the future of our region, please consider making a “tax-deductible” donation for this project. With 17,302 current residents in the tri-city area alone, it’s important that we design an outdoor fitness area that is open seven days a week, from dawn to dusk, and free of charge. We think this PARCOURSE will be a fun way to motivate and encourage people to reach their fitness goals!

Thank you for celebrating health in our community. We appreciate your commitment to be fit!

Your generosity can make a difference.