John Martin has overseen many improvements over the years at Shawano Lake County Park, but the latest upgrade means a lot to him personally.
The park has become a destination for campers and lake enthusiasts with 90 campsites, access to fishing and boating, sandy beaches, children’s play area, and a pavilion that welcomes weddings, birthdays, graduations, etc.
“Our popularity has grown through the roof,” said Martin, head ranger at the park, along with Hayman Falls in Pella and Wilson Lake in Wittenberg. It is a job he loves.
“I do a little bit of everything,” said Martin, who has been at the parks 31 years. “I devote a lot of my time to the park system. It’s basically my second home.”
For that entire time, he was married to Sandie, who understood his love for his job and sometimes helped him there, like when a storm took down trees and she helped pile brush.
“We used to camp here,” he said. “She knew I liked my job.”