Save Otter Creek Park – The Friends of Otter Creek Park Blog

About Friends of Otter Creek Park

The Save Otter Creek Park blog is the official blog of the Friends of Otter Creek Park, a group of concerned citizens from Louisville, Jefferson County, Hardin County, Meade County and many other municipalities whose ultimate goal is the re-opening of Otter Creek Park for recreational use by the general public. This blog is also an extension of the Facebook group Save Otter Creek Park (which you can join by clicking here).

The purpose of this blog is to help keep the members of Friends of Otter Creek Park and the greater Kentuckiana area informed and updated concerning our group’s activities and current events involving the indefinite closure on January 1, 2009. The author of this blog is Joel Hunt.

The Officers of Friends of Otter Creek Park as of January 5th, 2009 are as follows:

Boardmembers: Donnie Basham, Joel Hunt, William Mudd, John Oliver, Bill Ralls, and Angie White.
Secretary: David Baker
Treasurer: Kim Lucas

The following volunteer sub-committee groups have been formed:

  1. Petitions and Volunteering
  2. Public Relations and Media
  3. Non-Profit and Charity Outreach
  4. Government Liaison
  5. Legal Issues and Liability Policy
  6. Friends of Otter Creek Park Bylaws
  7. Special Interests

If you’d like to volunteer for any of the above groups, please contact us at Addditionally, to contribute to the blog with any tips, news updates, comments, suggestions, ideas and memories concerning Otter Creek Park and our efforts to keep it open, contact us at the same email address. Thanks!


8 Comments so far
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We camp there twice per year, Labor Day weekend taking up around 30 sites and during the Halloween October weekends usually the second taking up 10 or so sites. These are big campouts and we look forward to them Big Time… Hiking camping, etc. We have been doing the Halloween weekend for 10-12 years now and it is a big tradition. We would hate to see the park die.

Comment by Geoff Webb

We camp in OCP just about every other weekend!!! My two boys are just devastated, as are we, that OCP is now closed!! What a huge loss, and this is what your government can do for you!!! Thanks for all the support State of Kentucky, Gov. Beshear, and all the other politicians!!

Comment by Brian Baker

The following is included in your statement regarding Otter Creek Park:

“the concerned citizens of Louisville, Jefferson County, Meade County, Hardin County, Fort Knox, Radcliff, Brandenburg, Vine Grove and the greater Kentuckiana area”

If the people of those geographic areas other than Metro Louisville want to contribute to the costs of operating and maintaining Otter Creek Park, it may have a chance to re-open. But if the residents of those other areas think that the citizens of Metro Louisville, few of whom actually use the park, believe that we are going to continue to finance this facility, they are finally mistaken.

If the residents of “Kentuckiana” area want Otter Creek to continue, they need to step to the plate and offer financial support. I am tired of doing so. My only trips to Otter Creek in the last two decades was to take my daughter to the Girl Scout camp. Metro Louisville has a budget problem. It cannot continue to lose money supplying non-taxpaying citizens of other jurisdictions the use of this fine facility while their local governments decline to financially involved.

Comment by Larry Moscoe

Larry, your comments are duly noted. So far we have definitely had an outpouring of interest in saving Otter Creek Park from not only the counties surrounding Louisville (including Indiana), but from all over the world. If re-opening Otter Creek Park becomes a feat that our group can help accomplish by raising money, rest assured that many, many people from outside Louisville will contribute.

As an aside, your comments make me wonder whether you think people from other counties or other parts of Kentucky or Indiana should be able to visit any other Louisville Metro park free of charge. After all, what must be fair for Otter Creek Park must be fair for, say, Waterfront Park or Iroquois Park or Cherokee Park, perhaps? Would you propose that Louisville Metro charge an additional amount on every car with Indiana plates that parks downtown during Thunder Over Louisville, maybe?

Comment by stateofthecommonwealth

Sadly, people think that only folks who live close to Otter Creek benefit from the park. Therefore only Meade County residents benefit from it. FALSE!! That is why we all need to be speaking up, those of us who live in other areas of town. We live in Pleasure Ridge but own a store in St. Matthews where many people there have signed our petition. While hiking last week we meet people from areas all over, none whom lived as close as we do. A truck driver was hiking and lived near Bernheim but loves OC due to the trails, we met mountain bikers from Hillview, people from Indiana, Goshen, PeWee Valley, look at the WHAS pole, 75% of the people want it reopened, where did all those folks come from? ALL OVER!!!

Larry, come to a meeting, see the faces, hear the stories, get their zip codes and by all means.. bring the mayor… REOPEN THE PARK!!!!!!!!

Comment by Michele

Larry, I also ask that you come to our next meeting on 1-26 at 7:00 am. First I would like to ask you where you came up with your comment “few of whom use the park” Obviously you are not aware of the several thousand Metro Louisville citizens actually frequent the park quite often. Secondly, I ask you if you can tell us exactly where the budget shortfall is for Metro Louisville, Major Abe, can, but won’t! If your tired of paying your money to “finace” Otter Creek park, you may want to look into what else your financing, contact the major’s office, I think you may be very surprised. PLEASE come to the meeting. It just might open your eyes!

Comment by Kim L.

Correction on Meeting time 7:00 pm.

Comment by Kim L.

My email to our senators:
I have been camping and using Otter Creek’s facilities for almost 30 years and have witnessed many changes. It has been long known publically that Mayor Jerry Abramsom has tried (over the years) various methods to rid the city of Louisville of that “pesky” Otter Creek problem. Abramson himself states in his 1-15-09 interview with LEO (magazine) that he has tried to get 6 different governors to take Otter Creek, to get the federal government and/or Fort Knox to take it over and conversations with the judge in Meade County (Otter Creek is actually in Meade County), again, to divest Louisville of that “budget loser” Otter Creek Park.
Abramson then stated to LEO that he closed the park to “save it”. Pah-leese! since when? He admitted trying to get rid of it for (literally) years!

In all of these years, I have never heard of Mayor Abramson visiting (much less camping at Otter Creek). I have asked numerous fellow campers and users of Otter Creek and they, too, have never heard of Abramson actually visiting/using the facilities.

It is noteworthy that there has been little if no outreach to the citizens of Louisville and those citizens surrounding Otter Creek at a grassroots level FROM Mayor Abramsom himself or his office(s) prior to closing OCP. Little (if any) public meetings, little, if any, outreach for corporate sponsorship from businesses such as Walmart, local restaurants, etc. (why would Abramson aggressively advertise for sponsorship if he actually actively worked to get rid of it *Otter Creek Park?)

It is also noteworthy that the amount of money lost stated by Abramson went from $180,000 (Dec. 08) per year to $500,000 (Jan. 09) per year. What creative accounting! Where is the transparency? Why is it that, given Abramson’s long-held penchant to dump Otter Creek, I don’t trust the “new” $500k that Otter Creek alledgedly “loses”?

According to the Courier-Journal newspaper, State officials advised that the city must keep open trails “in perpetuity” due to the use of Federal funds for said trails.

I, personally, have hiked just about every inch of both the old trails and new trails. I am, according to Federal regulations, being denied a right I am supposed to have “in perpetuity” which, if I am not mistaken, would have been this past (gorgeous) weekend.

Please step up the pressure on the City of Louisville to follow Federal regulations and return Otter Creek to the people.

Comment by Janice Whitworth

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