The Newton County Recreation Commission is governed by an nine member recreation commission and a director which meet the 4th Monday night in each month.
The recreation commission is funded by the Newton County Board of Commissioners, The operating budget is set in June of each year and implemented in July. Capital improvements are budgeted as needed.
A Five Year Comprehensive Master Plan
was implemented in 2005. All available information and input from the city and county governments and interested citizens were directed toward future recreation growth, needs and goals.
This study found the primary activities the county needed to address were:
These guidelines were based on:
- Multi-use courts
- Tennis courts
- A Trail System for biking, walking, running and fitness
- Passive use opportunities
- Senior center meeting space
- Picnic area
- Seating in parks
- Existing recreational facilities
- Projected population growth patterns
- Public recommendation
- Management strategies
- Suggestions as to improving efficiency to an expanding park system in Newton County.
This master plan is currently in progress and being implemented. The guidelines generated from the analysis of the recreational needs and goals of the community assure future recreational demands of Newton County will be met in a progressive and strategic fashion.
Long range plans include but are not limited to:
- Connection of the Rob Fowler Trail System to the downtown square in Covington and the Newton County Library. This will add approximately 3 miles to the trail and is the result of an I.S.T.E.A. grant.
- Five softball/baseball practice fields.
- Three additional picnic areas.
- A nature center.
- Seven outdoor multi-use courts.
- Ten tennis courts.
Through the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST), the recreation commission received monies to be distributed over a five year period. This enabled the recreation commission to purchase 158 acres with a 26 acre lake in Covington, now know as Turner Lake Complex.
Satellite parks resulting from the ten year master plan have been completed with dedications for citizens of Newton County:
- Mary Louise Fowler Park
- B. C. Crowell Park
- Beaver Park.
- Denny Dobbs Park
The Newton County Recreation Commission has entered into an inter-governmental contract with the Newton County School Board regarding the use of the facilities. This agreement will be in effect from from January 1, 1997 for a period of five years. Because of the growth of our programs and the Newton County School System, the agreement enables cooperative use of facilities including, but not limited to:
Beside the Board of Education, the Recreation Commission is in partnership with:
- Football Fields
- Softball Fields
- Tennis Courts
- Outdoor Basketball Courts
- Walking/Running Tracks
- Nature Trails
- Newton County Senior Services
- Newton County Board of Commissioners
- The City of Covington
- The Newton County Chamber of Commerce
- Local Business and Industry