Get Your Fit in Goshen —
When the summer months arrive in Goshen, it’s time to take your fitness aspirations outside.
Our trail network – complete with bicycle-friendly, on-road pathways – make jogging, hiking, and biking as easy as opening your door and walking through it.
But there’s so much more to explore in your pursuit of a satisfying workout and overall wellness in warm weather. From canoe rides to pickleball, Goshen’s got classes and equipment rentals to support workouts in the beautiful out-of-doors.
Here are a few ideas to get you out and on your way:
1) Elkhart River by Canoe
Shanklin Park, 411 W Plymouth Ave (starting point)
Cool off with a canoe ride down the Elkhart River. Trips run daily, departing from Shanklin Park at 10 a.m. and ending at Ox Box County Park at 2 p.m. Return shuttle service from Ox Bow to the trip’s starting point at Shanklin is provided. Canoes rentals are priced at $40 plus tax and plan to bring friends: each canoe holds up to two adults and two children or three adults. Trip reservations can be made 96 hours in advance by visiting the Goshen Parks and Recreation offices at 524 E Jackson St.
The season runs from April 15 to October 15.
Photo credit: City of Goshen
2) Goshen Stars Soccer Club
Goshen Memorial Soccer Park, 20792 CR 36
Goshen Stars Soccer Club is volunteer-led and operated, making access to the sport more affordable to families of young athletes. The travel league offers two seasons: spring, which concludes in May, and fall, with practices beginning in August. l
Goshen Stars board president and sometime-coach Millard Graeber assured that players can be added to teams until the start of August practices and encouraged families to text questions about registration to his phone number (574.320.6532).
“We believe team sports are a way to build community, and it’s all different aspects of the community – culturally, socio-economically – so being able to practice and be together as families enriches our community,” Graeber said. “We also support communities around us. Bremen doesn’t have a club. Ligonier doesn’t have a club. So we get players from there, too.”
And the price is right, with the cost of registration fixed regardless of how many are on a team: players born in 2015 and 2016 pay $120; groups with birth years from 2008 to 2014 pay $200 a player; high school students born beginning in 2004 pay $250 (spring only).
A practice-only option is also open to players too young for the travel league. Children born in 2017 can be a part of the fun by registering to practice alongside peers just a year or two older.
Registration through the beginning of August; text questions to (574) 320-6532.
Photo credit: Goshen Stars
3) Goshen Mountain Bike Trail
Parking available at 607 W Plymouth Avenue
First carved out in 2003 by local optometrist and long-time Goshen City Parks board member Jim Wellington, this two-mile length of mountain biking and hiking goodness fell into disuse shortly after its creation when flooding obstructed access. Resurrecting the path became a priority for Wellington and fellow mountain bikers, however, when more well-traveled trails became crowded during the pandemic.
Visit the trail Facebook page for conditions
Photo credit: Goshen Mountain Bike Trail (Facebook)
4) Fidler Pond Park and Pavilion
1424 Lincolnway East
This reclaimed sand and gravel pit offers lake access and a trail for walking and biking on 100 acres of open space. Canoe, kayak, and pedal boats are available to rent, along with fishing poles. Chiddister Pavilion, an open-air facility with kitchen, fireplace, and restrooms, can also be reserved for a fee.
Fiddler Pond Park is home to Goshen’s Rock the Quarry Triathalon, too, held annually there in August.
Photo credit: Elkhart County Convention & Visitors Bureau
5) Pickleball Courts
Model School Park, 412 S. Greene Road
Eight permanent pickleball courts are open to the community daily from May through October on the L-shaped, four-acre space located outside Model Elementary School. Play is free and all skill levels are welcome, but court schedules are subject to change.
To receive weekly email updates or check out how-to classes offered free to novice players, contact the Goshen Pickleballers – nearly 200 strong! – or call the Goshen Parks Department at (574) 535-2901.
6) Sports and Activities for One and All!
Visit Goshen Parks and Recreation online for more information.
Find fitness among friends through Goshen Parks and Recreation’s all-ages sports and activity programming. Adult sports teams are organized through the parks department year-round, with softball and sand volleyball among summer’s outdoor offerings. Sign-up in advance or drop in to Zumba classes at Pringle Park’s Fidler Pavilion, and with pre-registration, you’re invited to an introduction to Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.
For youth, soccer camps are available in June for children between 4 and 10, with the Goshen Sharks community co-ed league for kids beginning practices in August. And at Schrock Pavilion at Shanklin Park, Champion Force Cheerleading is posted up and sharing all the basics of jumps, stunts, dance steps, and voice projection to boys and girls from 8 to 18. For registration and session dates, call Champion Force (800) 940-7469.
Check out the city’s complete list of fitness offerings online in the 2022 Activity Guide.
Photo credit: City of Goshen
Good of Goshen Editor: Wendy Wilson
Original publish date June 2022