TRAVERSE CITY — Chazz McCall refers to North Twin Lake and the wilderness surrounding it as “pristine” and “God’s country.”
He’s owned land on the Long Lake Township body of water for more than 25 years and he treasures the area. For years, McCall planned to give his property to Grand Traverse County after his death, but he revoked that offer during a county commission meeting last month.
“Twenty years ago I said, ‘When I die, I’m going to leave this land to the county,’” McCall said. “I informed them at the meeting that will no longer be on the table because of their lack of stewardship.”
McCall said he’s witnessed growing problems in recent years — chief among them illegal hunting and alcohol and drug consumption — at the county-owned park that wraps around the north and east edges of North Twin Lake, across the water from where McCall lives.
”Somebody likes Busch and somebody likes Coors Light,” McCall said while pointing to discarded beer cans near a makeshift bonfire pit at the county park this month.
Violations of posted rules outlining park hours and vehicle prohibitions also concern McCall, as do violations of state fishing regulations. But his biggest concerns remain the hunting, which McCall said occurs in areas of the park crisscrossed with hiking trails, along with the partying.
”Young people, alcohol and water don’t mix,” he said.
McCall said he’s repeatedly brought his concerns to county officials in recent years but nothing has changed.
Grand Traverse County Commissioner Christine Maxbauer has talked with McCall about the park several times since he spoke before the commission last month. She said the misuse of Twin Lakes Park needs to stop.
Maxbauer, a member of the county’s Parks and Recreation Commission, said Parks and Recreation Director Jason Jones needs to address McCall’s concerns.