Veterans Memorial Park
Located on west bank of Saginaw River in Bay City.
The park displaced a shanty town known as Beutel Row. The name was derived from the Beutel Canning Company located at the end of Jane St. Over the years the park has been transformed from primarily wild land often used for disposing of junk into the county's largest park.
Historically the land covered by the park was originally developed in 1865. That year the Sage and McGraw Mill opened as the world's largest sawmill and soon the company of town of Wenona began to dramatically transform this wilderness into a bustling community. Some years later, James Davidson established a shipyard south of the mill and built some some of the largest wood sailing schooners on the Great Lakes. One of the slips of the shipyard is a part of the park today. And, nearby along the river are sunken skeletons of vessels from this era. And, the shipyard of F.W. Wheeler was located just north of Midland street. Young Harry Defoe often visited the yards to watch schooners being created. A passion that led to him starting his own shipyard in Bay City as an adult.
The park extends from Midland street at the north end to the Lafayette Bridge on the south. The park has many features including, a riverwalk trail, boat marina, playgrounds, boat launch area, ballfields, sandy beach ball courts, peir walk, heritage buildings, community center, and a walk bridge to the middle grounds.
It is also the secene for many of the summer festivals held in Bay City, including the the annual River of Time event.