The first of four open houses to get public input on creating a master plan for the future of White Clay Creek State Park in Newark will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. June 25 at Deerfield, 507 Thompson Station Road, Newark.

Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Secretary Shawn M. Garvin announced in May that the Division of Parks & Recreation is beginning the process of creating a master plan for the future of the park and will hold four open houses this summer to gather public input for the plan.

The June 25 open house will focus on natural resources and interpretation, for public input on topics such as habitat, farming, ponds and streams, historical and natural programming.

The open houses are an opportunity for members of the public to convey what they enjoy about the park and what concerns or ideas they might have for the future. This will help to inform the development of a draft plan.

The next three open houses are tentatively scheduled from 4-7 p.m. at Deerfield on July 10, focused on buildings and infrastructure for public input on topics including the Nature Center, the park office, use of buildings and current and future concessionaires; on Aug. 1, focused on roads and trails for public input on topics including roads, trails and connectivity; and on Aug. 20, focused on recreation for input on topics such as golfing, fishing, visiting historic sites and events.

In addition to the open houses, the public is encouraged to participate in a brief online survey to provide initial comments. A second survey will be developed with more specific questions later in the process.

The public is also encouraged to visit destateparks.com/whiteclaymasterplan for the latest information and updates and to check back frequently for the latest news and draft documents for review once developed. In addition to the webpage, announcements will be made by DNREC press release, signs in the park and other means.

General comments may be submitted to dnrec_wccmasterplan@state.de.us or DNREC-DPR, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, Attention: WCCSP Master Plan.