Nature Areas

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Deetz Nature Preserve

Deetz Nature Preserve, named after a retired maintenance director, Thomas Deetz, became park property in 2006. Located at the intersection of Parrot and Hartzell roads, Deetz Nature Preserve is 72 acres of low-lying wetland area.

The preserve-now a beautiful, natural area-was donated by Waste Management. The area has been replanted with native grasses, and the reforestation process has been started with the planting of many young trees. The area has multiple mowed trails, a parking area, and an outdoor classroom. The area is a fantastic location for leisure walks, bird watching, and nature hiking.

Deetz Nature Preserve Map (PDF)


  • Multiple Natural Trail Loops
  • Outdoor Classroom
  • Gravel Parking

Additional Information

Areas like the Deetz Nature Preserve are critical because its wetlands release vegetative matter into rivers, which helps feed fish. While wetlands are truly unique, they must not be thought of as isolated and independent habitat. Wetlands are important to the health of all other biomes as well as to wildlife and humans everywhere.

Fun Facts

Wetlands prevent flooding by acting as a holding area for an overabundance of water and retaining water until it can slowly be released. This helps keep river levels normal along with filtering and purifying the surface water.

Wetlands help to counterbalance the effect of humans on rivers by rejuvenating them and surrounding ecosystems.


Numerous animals that live in other habitations use wetlands for reproduction or migration.

Unlike most other habitats, wetlands directly improve other ecosystems. Due to its many cleansing benefits, wetlands have been compared to kidneys. The analogy is a good one because kidneys and wetlands both help cleanse the system and control water flow.

Wetland Cleaning

Wetlands also clean the water by decomposing vegetative matter, filtering out sedimentation, and converting chemicals into usable form.

Wetlands help with erosion control. Tall, native plants help to keep erosion at bay.