Dodge County unveils online campground reservation system

September 2, 2018
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Derge Park is one of the many where visitors can use Dodge County Parks' new online registration to book a campsite. This view shows the boat landing looking toward the northeast side of the lake.

JUNEAU — A self-service online reservation system is now available for making Dodge County Parks advance camping and shelter reservations any day or time at dodgeparks.com.

The previous reservation system was in service for more than 10 years but had limitations in providing a quality online reservation option.

“Our customers asked for an online reservation option and we accommodated with what we believe is a quality, user-friendly system that will serve our customers and staff well,” said Land Resources and Parks Director Bill Ehlenbeck.

In addition to providing better customer access, the online reservation system is expected to reduce the amount of staff time devoted to taking reservations.

“We have seen a massive jump in reservations over the years due to our commitment to updating and improving facilities, providing good maintenance and having friendly, helpful staff,” Ehlenbeck said.

Making reservations the traditional way over the phone at 920-386-3700 or in the office will still be available for those that prefer the personal touch and for reservations for less than seven days in advance.

Online reservations can be made at least seven days and up to a year in advance of the desired use date. The new system incorporates the use of the county’s latest aerial photography and provides site pictures and details to help users decide what site to select. The popular site availability grid view from the old system is also available with the new system, as well as color-coded sites highlighting what sites are available for the desired range of dates. A $5 reservation fee has been implemented for each site reservation, but the minimum $3 credit card transaction fee will no longer be charged.

In all, Dodge County Parks offers 143 campsites and nine picnic shelters over four parks, each with its unique character and amenities: Astico Park is situated along the Crawfish River east of Columbus and has 63 campsites; Ledge Park with 45 campsites, sitting atop the Niagara Escarpment overlooking the Horicon Marsh between Horicon and Mayville; Derge Park on the shores of Beaver Dam Lake has 25 campsites; and Harnischfeger Park has 10 campsites along the Rock River in southeast Dodge County east of Watertown.

Dodge County Parks’ campsite occupancy levels have been at record levels the past few years, making it difficult to get more desirable sites without a reservation made well in advance. The new online system will make it easier to make those reservations.

Access to the online reservation system can be made through the Dodge County Parks website at dodgeparks.com.

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