Portland is known as the 'City of Two Rivers' and is located at the junction of the Grand River and the Looking Glass River. The town has three historic bridges that span the Grand River, including the Bridge Street Bridge that dates back to 1890 and a two-span railroad bridge that is now used for the Portland Rivertrail. Another historic bridge was moved from Kent County to a spot over the Looking Glass River.
The Grand River and Looking Glass River provide a relaxing setting next to the Portland Rivertrail.
The recreational trail crisscrosses Portland and totals over 8 miles in length. The 10-foot-wide paved route is used for
biking, walking, jogging and roller-blading.
Bogue Flats Recreation Area, Community Lake Park, Two Rivers Park, William Toan Park, and Thompson Field have access to the Portland Rivertrail,
and any of their parking lots can serve as starting points for the trail.
The Portland Rivertrail is very scenic during the spring and fall, and it passes through wooded areas, open public spaces, and
near downtown Portland. Beautiful old bridges serve as the means for crossing the Grand River along the trail, including the
Bridge Street Bridge that dates back to 1890.
Bogue Flats Recreation Area
is the largest park in Portland and features several ball diamonds for
softball and baseball. The park also has a skating rink, picnic shelter, playground, volleyball court,
and large picnic area. The park is a popular starting point for the Portland Rivertrail, which winds through parts of the
Community Lake Park
features two large picnic shelters and a playground. The park also has access to the
Looking Glass River and the Portland Rivertrail.
, William Toan Park
, Thompson Field
and Two Rivers Park
are all located close to downtown Portland. Powers Playground features a baseball diamond that is popular during the summer.
William Toan Park is a scenic park on the Grand River and includes a small playground, picnic shelter, gazebo, and restrooms.
Thompson Field is connected to William Toan Park, and the name is slightly deceiving since the park contains three
small ball fields. Thompson Field also has a two parking lots and a small picnic shelter. A canoe/kayak launch
on the Grand River is located near the
western-most parking lot for Thompson Field.
Two Rivers Park
is located where the Looking Glass River and Grand River meet and provides a
beautiful spot to relax. The park has a boat launch for canoes and kayaks and a bandshell for concerts and other events.
The bandshell can be rented for private get-togethers.
Joe Tichvon Park
is on the west side of Portland and includes
a picnic shelter, playground, and basketball hoop. The picnic shelter can
be rented for private gatherings.
includes two basketball courts, a playground, restroom, and a picnic area.
Brush Street Park
is south of downtown and features basketball courts and a playground.
Kayaking & Canoeing
With easy access to the Grand River and Looking Glass River, Portland is an ideal spot to
go canoeing or kayaking. Two Rivers Park provides a good spot to launch a canoe/kayak on the Looking Glass River. The south end of William Toan Park offers a good spot to launch a kayak on the Grand River. See the map page for the launch locations.
The river banks of the Grand River in Portland provide good locations for fishermen looking to catch smallmouth bass. Other popular fishing spots include William Toan Park and where the Grand River and Looking Glass River meet. Smallmouth bass season starts on Memorial Day and ends December 31.
A valid fishing license is required to fish on Michigan lakes and waterways. You can get a Michigan fishing license online at the Michigan DNR E-License web site
and at bait shops and sporting goods stores.
More About Portland
The city has several restaurants and stores located on Grand River Avenue near the exits for the I-96 expressway. Chocolate Moose in downtown has good ice cream. Duke's Canoe Club Waterfront Grille, Frosty Boy, and Looking Grand Cafe & Bakery are also located in downtown. There are other shops and business in downtown along Kent Street and Grand River Avenue.