In the heart of Traverse City lies Hickory Hills, a mid twentieth century, municipally owned and operated City Park. Envisioned by civic leaders, the small ski park emerged from the woods the way most things got done back then, through the persistence, hard work and collaboration of volunteers. Their idea: create a ski park where children could ski for free. Over a thirty-year span, the City acquired seven privately owned lots creating over 125 acres of parkland less than two miles from downtown.