Park Rules

General park rules are as follows; however, certain park facilities may have additional rules.  Please follow the rules posted on the signage at the Parks.


Alcohol is not allowed at the following parks except if permission has been obtained from the Special Events Committee / Common Council:  Washington, Union, Riverview, Pulaski, Lincolnshire, Henry Schuette, Custerdale Playground, Union, Mariner's Landing, Manitowoc Youth Baseball Complex at Citizen Park or Municipal Athletic Field.  The prohibition extends to sidewalks in and immediately adjacent to the parks, unless the beverages are in their original, unopened containers.  In addition, alcoholic beverages are prohibited in the Lincoln Park Zoo at all times.


Camping is prohibited in all City parks unless permission has been obtained from the Special Events Committee / Common Council. 


Dogs are allowedDogs walking on Red Arrow Beach in all City of Manitowoc parks, except Citizen Park, Miracles Park, and the Lincoln Park Zoo area, and must be leashed unless signs indicate it is a dog run area.  Other than service dogs, dogs are not allowed in Evergreen Cemetery, on school grounds, at any special event where it is posted that dogs are prohibited, or inside park buildings or other City buildings.

Dogs are required by ordinance to be leashed prior to entering and upon leaving a dog run area. Puppies under four months and off-leash dogs with a known history of dangerous behavior are prohibited from being in dog run areas. Do not leave your dog unattended. There is a limit of three dogs per person per visit. Dogs must be licensed, vaccinated, and be wearing a collar with identification at all times. 

Please be considerate & pick up after your pets.  Doggie waste bags are provided at most areas where dogs are allowed.


No fires shall be permitted in any City park or beach except charcoal fires in barbecue grills. The Director of Public Infrastructure and/or his designee may grant specific exceptions to this rule in individual instances where adequate precautions are taken to assure public safety. Grilling must be confined to enclosed metal containers. Hot coals must be disposed of in designated coal containers.  Disposing of coals on grass, at the base of a tree, or at any other location is strictly prohibited.


All park users are expected to pick up their trash and dispose of it in the proper container.  Disposal of waste generated off-site is not permitted.  If containers are not provided, please take out any garbage you brought in.  Help us keep our parks and beaches beautiful.


No glass containers, such as glass bottles, are allowed on beaches or at special events of over 50 people.  

Horseback Riding

Horseback riding is not permitted within the limits of any City park or Evergreen Cemetery.


Unless otherwise posted, park hours are from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m., except for Camp Vits & Evergreen Cemetery which are open dawn to dusk.  Events held entirely within fieldhouses and park cabins must conclude by midnight and cleanup must be completed by 2 a.m. 

Hunting / Trapping

No hunting, trapping or baiting is allowed in any City of Manitowoc park.  To find out what City of Manitowoc properties hunting is allowed on or to report any illegal activities, please contact the Manitowoc Police Department at (920) 686-6500.

Waterfowl hunting is allowed in Lake Michigan according to Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources rules and regulations.  All hunters interested in hunting in that area are asked to register at the Manitowoc Police Department. Hunters must comply with all State of Wisconsin and Federal Migratory Game Bird Restrictions.  All shooting should be done in a direction that does not endanger people or property, and hunters must be in a boat on the water or have their feet in the water.  They cannot be standing on rocks, etc.

Inflatables / Bounce Houses

No inflatable devices, such as a bounce house, swimming pool or other inflatable structure used for recreation purposes may be erected in any City park unless the inflatable device is erected as part of an event approved by the Special Event Committee / Common Council. Click here to find information regarding special events.

Metal Detecting

Metal detecting is not allowed in City of Manitowoc parks or Evergreen Cemetery, except for beach areas.  Shovels, spades, garden trowels, and other similar tools may not be used to dig into or turn over ground areas that are covered by turf, vegetation, shrubs, or trees.  The only permissible digging tools are screwdrivers, ice picks, and other similar narrow-pronged devices.  An person wishing to remove any item or historical object found within a park by metal detection must first report said item to the municipal Parks Office by calling (920) 686-3580.


Amplified sound is not permitted between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. or within 500' of a hospital at any time or within 500' of a church or school when the church or school is in session unless the Chief of Police grants an exception.  Council approval is needed for a noise ordinance waiver.  

Camp Vits:  No amplified sound or bullhorns are allowed at any time.  

Lincoln Park: Direct sound away from residences and zoo animals as many animals perceive loud noise as a threat.  Twenty-one gun salutes are not allowed at Lincoln Park.  Requests for 21-gun salutes at other parks will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Plants / Trees / Shrubs / Driftwood

Please leave plants, shrubs, and trees where you found them.  Do not remove any vegetation, animals or other property from the park without prior approval.  To apply for a Wood Cutting/Harvesting Agreement, visit the Forestry page.  Rocks may not be removed from Camp Vits.

Per the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, "Driftwood provides valuable fish and wildlife habitat and adds to the unique character of the flowage; it is rapidly disappearing through natural processes and from illegal harvest.  State law prohibits removal of driftwood from the property."

Restrooms in Winter

Most park restrooms are winterized and closed for the winter beginning in mid-October.  Public restrooms at Halvorsen Park, Lighthouse Park, Lincoln Park Cabin #1, Lincoln Park Zoo, Manitou Park, and Silver Creek Park remain open all winter for outdoor recreational activities.  Portable toilets are available at upper Henry Schuette Park during winter and by the outdoor ice rink at the Briess Lot (when the ice rink is available for skating).

Scattering of Cremation Ashes

The scattering of cremains or cremations ashes is prohibited in all City of Manitowoc parks and Evergreen Cemetery.

Smoking / Smokeless Tobacco, etc.

No one may smoke or use smokeless tobacco or electronic cigarettes at or within 50’ of the Manitowoc Youth Baseball Complex at Citizen Park or at or within 50’ of any playground or play structure located on City property.  No smoking is allowed at Camp Vits at any time.  In addition, no smoking is allowed inside City buildings, under open air shelters, on the bandshell, or in tents.


Except for at the Manitowoc Family Aquatic Center or Recreation Division activities, lifeguards are not present.  Swimming is at your own risk.

Vandalism / Graffiti

Be respectful of other people and property.  Vandalism and graffiti will be prosecuted.  Outside of the Parks Division's office hours, report any vandalism or graffiti to the Manitowoc County Joint Dispatch Center at (920) 683-4470.


Motor vehicles are restricted to entrance roads and parking lots.  Motorized vehicles are not allowed at Camp Vits.  Fully motorized vehicles are not allowed on the Mariners Trail.  Pedal-assisted motorized vehicles are allowed as long as speed limits are adhered.  Only government-owned vehicles are permitted on the beach.


The City of Manitowoc takes pride in our public parks.  If you see someone violating these rules, call the Manitowoc County Joint Dispatch Center at (920) 683-4470.  Violators will be banned from public parks. 

Ordinances / Municipal Code

Didn't find what you are looking for?  Click here to search Manitowoc's Municipal Code.  Chapter 8 contains most of the ordinances regarding parks.