History of Green Bay's Parks

He-Nis-Ra Park

The name is said to be from the Mohawk language meaning "Top of the Hill" where the first Indian school was located near the present Porlier School. The Board of Park Commissioners officially named this park in December 1965 after the Plan Commission adopted a recommendation to turn the area of the southwest dumpsite into a park. This was approved by the Improvement and Service Committee and Council and was turned over to the Park Department in 1967. This former dumpsite was located adjacent to the Southwest High School (then Lombardi Junior High and now Lombardi Middle School) and therefore was considered a park/school site as certain facilities were used in common. Private property on South Point Road was purchased in 1975 to square off the park site and buildings later torn down.

In 1979, a unique and well laid out cross-country ski trail was developed with department staff and two teachers at Lombardi Junior High School.

There was some controversy in 1981 about location of a water tower to be installed by the Water Department so as not to cause environmental damage to the beautiful area and dissatisfaction from residents living around the park.

Teachers at Lombardi use the swamp area for study in their Life Science classes. A portion of the park along South Point Road was used as a landfill for a number of years. When the landfill was moved, plans for development were made.

2005-2006 - Park development of the former landfill site began as fill was added and grading took place. A gravel trail was put down and Parks crew built an open shelter.


  1. Only annotated statements have been verified. Any other historical statements are unverified and based on personal knowledge or informal notes kept by the Green Bay Parks, Recreation & Forestry Department.
Email: webmaster