Boardman Township Community Discuss Possibility of Race Track

Thursday night people weighed in on the possibility of a new car racing track in Kalkaska County.

The property for a new proposed track is in Boardman Township near Vista Green RV Resort.

During Thursday night’s Boardman Township Planning Commission Meeting, plans for a new race track were to be revealed, but Bill Stepke, the man behind the project and owner of Vista Green, didn’t show up; leaving more time for discussion.

One woman says, “We have something money can’t buy, a relatively peaceful existence, let’s not destroy it so a few can profit.”

Bill Billett, used to work at Cherry Raceway says, “Before you decide in an instant, check with Fife Lake, check with Kingsley, see how much business Cherry Raceway brought those two towns.” 

People for and against the track were in attendance. After Cherry Raceway closed, this new race track may be the only hope for fans like Bill Billet.

“All for it. Got excited about it even though it hasn’t started yet. I think it would be one of the best things that happened to this community and South Boardman needs it.” 

But while fans are eager many believe they aren’t thinking about the people who will have to live with the township’s decision like locals and tourists who use the nearby RV Park.

Bruce Hulwick lives only few miles from the proposed property and his brother has a lot in RV Resort owned by Bill Stepke. “Most of the residents of this township live within a couple miles of where he wants to put this track and if a racetrack goes in there their investments are going to be worth, they feel, just pennies on the dollar if they can sell the lot at all.”

And it’s not just the property value that is a concern, it’s also the environmental impact.

One person in the community spoke up and said, “Contaminated ground water due to oil and fuel leaks will also enter into Albright Creek and further degrade water quality.”

But Thursday night was only discussion. The commission can’t move forward until they review the plans.