The Jackson County Rose Festival
For more than 50 years, the Jackson County Rose Festival has served to celebrate the civic pride of the Jackson community. Incorporated in 1973, there are now several major events organized by the festival, including the Annual Jackson County Rose Parade, Party in the Park, the Annual Jackson County RoseQueen Scholarship Pageant, Annual Jackson County Outstanding Teen Pageant, Little Miss & Mr. Jackson Pageants and the Christmas Wish List Craft Show.
The Jackson County Rosequeen Pageant
The Rose Festival includes many beloved activities and amusements, yet the Jackson County RoseQueen Pageant is possibly the Festival’s crowning event. Beginning in 1960, the RoseQueen Pageant is a franchise of the Miss Michigan Pageant and the Miss America Pageant. As with these famous pageants, the RoseQueen Pageant supports the educational pursuits of the young women involved. Today, the Jackson RoseQueen Pageant is the second largest local pageant in the nation in terms of scholarship money.
Why the Rose?
In 1926, a group of Jackson residents planted a rose garden in Ella Sharp Park as a memorial to the great Ella W. Sharp, donor of the over 500 acres that became the largest city park in Jackson. Several years later the rose became the official flower of Jackson and we became known as the Rose City.
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Ella Sharp Park is located on 562 acres along the banks of the Southwest Branch of the Grand River in beautiful Jackson, Michigan. The landscape of the park varies from relatively... » More Information
Ella Sharp Park is located on 562 acres along the banks of the Southwest Branch of the Grand River in beautiful Jackson, Michigan. The landscape of the park varies from relatively flat to heavily rolling and hilly. This provides a great location for a park full of fun and activities for everyone. The park holds a challenging golf course, beautiful flower gardens, miles of hiking trails, basketball courts, soccer fields, a golf learning center, softball fields, and many other facilities for athletics and casual enjoyment of the outdoors.
The 562 acres were donated to the city of Jackson by Ella W. Sharp, the largest park donation to the city. She bequeathed her farm to the city to be developed as a park and maintained through a trust fund from her estate. Beginning in 1912, this family farm was developed as a public park. park roadways were laid out as well as the picnic and play areas, the golf course, tennis courts, and ball diamonds, and the gardens. The Merriman-Sharp Farmhouse became the beginning of the Ella Sharp Museum.
In 2001, the Ella Sharp Golf Course went through a restoration and redesign. The park's landscaping plan for the main park entrance was also professionally redeveloped, including new signage, additional trees and beautiful flowering shrubs.
This park currently features an eighteen hole golf course, eighteen hole miniature golf course, golf practice and learning center, four tennis courts, two picnic shelters, rose garden, Carter’s Corner Play Structure, two lighted softball fields, three regular softball fields, ten soccer fields, four baseball fields, one basketball court, playground areas, cross country ski trails, and the Ella Sharp Museum.
- Ella Sharp Park's 18 hole miniaturized golf course holds fun for everyone. The mini course is open 7 days a week. Please call for Seasonal Hours @ 517-788-4696
- Ella Sharp Park's 18 hole golf course provides a challenge for golfers of all levels. The course touts two of Jackson County's most challenging golf holes (2nd & 12th holes) along with an array of other well manicured fairways and greens. Call the club house for availability at (517)788-4066.
Golf Learning Center
- Ella Sharp Park's Golf Learning Center is a great place to learn how to play golf, brush up on your skills, or just go to hit a few golf balls. The center includes 25 tee stations over looking a well manicured range with 5 target greens. The center also has a sand bunker and a large putting green for practicing that short game. For those golfers that are looking for more than just hitting a few balls around, the learning center also has a wide range of classes available for youths and adults. Classes and private instruction by PGA Golf Professional (Eric W. Terrian) are available for both beginners and veteran players. Please Call for Seasonal Hours @ 517-780-4799.
Lighted Softball Fields
- The park includes 2 full service fenced and lighted ball fields. Field #1 has a scorer's building while field #2 has a rain shelter.
Open Field Sports Area
- The park includes 3 full size football fields, 3 softball fields, 4 full size soccer fields which can be used as 8 smaller fields.
- The park has a stretch along the banks of the Grand River which is available for fishing. The area is handicapped accessible and is located in the southeast portion of the park.
Paved and Unpaved Walking, Jogging, and Bike Trails
- The park includes a 1 mile path that connects from Fourth Street with Museum and with the South Jackson Street entrance. In addition, the park also keeps some rough trails that meander through natural preservation areas in both the East and West sides of Fourth Street. These trails are ideal for walking, jogging, and cross country skiing. Cascades Cycling Trail Map
- The park upkeeps 4 paved tennis courts on a first come first serve basis.
- The park upkeeps one basketball court located at the South Jackson Road entrance.
- Includes Carter's Corner located across from the Ella Sharp Museum
- The Jackson Recreation Department will reserve either the Ella Sharp Park Rose Garden (near the entrance of Ella Sharp Park) or the Rotunda (across from the Museum) for your wedding. The Ella Sharp Park Carters Corner Picnic Pavilion or the West Picnic Pavilion are also available for rental. See Ella Sharp Museum for their Facility Rentals.
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