Community Programs

The Township has many programs to benefit the community.

Environmental Programs        Social Programs        Events
Garlic Mustard Drop Off   Public Transportation   Memorial Day Program 
Spongy (formerly Gypsy) Moth Spraying   Toys for Tots                     July Fourth Celebration 
Christmas Tree Recycling       Metro Cruise Warm Up
Household Hazardous Waste Disposal       Cascade Heritage Festival
Oak Wilt        
Yard Waste Pick Up/Clean Up Day        





Bagged Garlic Mustard Drop Off

A collection dumpster for garlic mustard will be available Friday, May 6 through Tuesday, May 30, 2023 in the back of the Cascade Township Fire Station #2 (2990 Buttrick SE, Ada MI 49301).

Residents are needed to volunteer for a garlic mustard pull at two different Cascade Township locations:

  • Saturday, May 6, 2023, from 10:00-1:00 PM at Burton Park, 6805 Burton St SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546.  Meet at the Maintenance building and parking will be available behind the building.
  • Thursday, May 11, 2023 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at the Cascade Township Cemetery, 7200 30th St SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49508.  Meet and park back by the maintenance garage but don’t block traffic.

Grab some gloves and join in these community volunteer events.

Soon it Will Be Garlic Mustard Season

Garlic mustard is a highly invasive plant that stays green all year long.  It has the odor of garlic when crushed.  The young rosette (cluster of leaves) grows close to the ground.  The adult plants grow upright with a white, four-petal flower at the end of the stalk.

  • Out competes or prevents native plants and trees from growing.
  • One plant can produce more than 3,000 seed.
  • Seeds can remain viable in the soil for ten years or more.
Prevent Future Spread:
  • Monitor your property carefully and frequently for new infestations.  (Removing one or two plants before they go to seed is much easier than removing hundreds of plants later.)
  • Clean shoes, plant cuffs, and equipment thoroughly after walking or working in an infested area.
Suggested Control:
Hand removal is best achieved before the plant has gone to seed.  When soil is moist, grasp low and firmly on the plant.  Tug gently until the main root loosens and the ENTIRE plant pulls out.
Pulled plants should be bagged and placed in regular trash.  DO NOT COMPOST!


Spongy Moth Spraying (formerly Gypsy Moth)

The Entomological Society of  America has recently changed the official common name of Lymantria Dispar from "gypsy moth" to "spongy moth".  Spraying for 2023 was completed the morning of Wednesday, May 17.

Many Michigan residents have heard of the spongy moth, though they many not know what the insect looks like. Spongy moth is a notorious pest that feeds on the leaves of oaks, aspen and many other species of shade and forest trees.

PDF IconSpongy Moth Spraying Program Map

Click here for Interactive Map (Use the Parcel Search option on the right side of the map)
Gypsy Moth
For many years, Cascade Township has participated in a local program to spray for spongy moths caterpillars, and plans are underway to once again spray for these potentially devastating pests. The 2023 spray program actually began last fall, when the township hired a firm to survey the Township for spongy moth egg masses. This process allows us to limit the spray areas to those places most likely to see an infestation (see map to view spray area). This year, the Township will be spraying 498 acres.

In order to treat the spongy moth, the designated areas will be sprayed with a non-toxic biological agent called Bacillus thuringiensis or “Bt.” Below are some frequently asked questions about spongy moth caterpillars and the treatment program.

What does a spongy moth caterpillar look like?

Spongy moth caterpillars are typically around two inches in length, and can be identified by their distinctive markings. They typically have a yellow head with black markings, followed by prominent blue and red spots along the length of their body. They can be found in over 250 species of trees, though they are especially found where Oak trees are abundant, and they do not spin silk tents, unlike the native and relatively harmless Eastern Tent Caterpillar

How does “Bt” affect the spongy moth caterpillars?

“Bt” is a naturally occurring bacterium common in soils throughout the world. When a spongy moth caterpillar eats leaves sprayed with “Bt” the bacterium produces a protein that reacts with the cells of the digestive tract lining of the spongy moth caterpillar. The “Bt” proteins essentially paralyze the digestive track of the caterpillars, which will then cause them to stop feeding and eventually kill them. The spongy moth caterpillars will typically die en masse two to three days after spraying occurs.

Is “Bt” dangerous to people, pets, wildlife or other beneficial insects?

The primary benefit to the use of “Bt” in controlling the spongy moth population is that it is naturally occurring bacterial disease of insects and is non-toxic and safe for people, pets and wildlife, and some formulations can be used on essentially all food crops. Additionally, unlike most insecticides, “Bt” does not have a broad spectrum of activity, so they do not kill beneficial insects including natural enemies of insects (predators and parasites) as well as beneficial pollinators, such as honeybees.

For 2023, it is anticipated that the spongy moth caterpillar spraying program will take place over the course of a week (or less). We will post the date when it is finalized. The application is done by helicopter, and typically takes one day to complete. Residents who reside within the spray zones will be receiving direct notification of the program through the mail.

Remember, the spongy moth does its damage during the caterpillar stage, which is during mid-May to mid-June. If your trees are being defoliated later in the summer, it's caused by something other than spongy moths.

Residents in spray areas need not remain indoors while spraying is underway and can safely go about their regular daily activities. As "B.t." is released into the air, it will descend upon trees and grounds in a light mist which will be barely discernible. Residents can expect to find dead caterpillar larvae in and around their yards upon completion of the insecticide application.

Additional Information
PDF Icon 2023 Homeowner Notification Letter
PDF Icon 2023 Recommended Spongy Moth Spray Report
PDF Icon 2023 Spray Drift Management Plan
PDF Icon Additional Information on Spongy Moths
PDF Icon Additional Information on Bacillus Thuringiensis


Christmas Tree Recycling

Christmas TreeDumpsters will be available behind the Buttrick Fire Station (Buttrick & 30th Street) to deposit your Christmas trees from December 26th to January 17th for recycling. Please remember to remove all ornaments, lights, tinsel & tree stands.


Household Hazardous Waste Disposal

Due to the expansion of hours of operation at their SafeChem Drop-off locations, Kent County DPW is no longer hosting on-site community hazardous waste disposal programs.

To learn more about the hazardous waste disposal program at Kent County DPW, including hours of operation at their 5 Kent County drop-off sites, please visit their webpage at 

MORE INFORMATION:  Please call Kent County Department of Public Works for additional information or for directions on large loads (greater than 6 boxes), items larger than a 5-gallon bucket. They can be reached at 616-632-7941 or at


Oak Wilt

Two Oak Wilt Sites Confirmed at Burton Park
Cascade Burton Park has two confirmed sites of oak wilt, a lethal disease that kills red oaks within six to eight weeks of infection. There’s no cure for oak wilt once a red oak is infected. 
Want to help us identify infected red oaks? Here’s what to look for: Red oaks that suddenly drop their leaves in July through September, making it look like fall in the summer.
What can you do to prevent oak wilt? 
  • Don’t prune or wound oak trees during the growing season, which is April through September. 
  • Immediately use clear shellac to seal any wounds created during this time. 
  • Don’t move infected wood.   
The main goal is to prevent oak wilt at Cascade Burton Park from killing additional red oak trees in the park and adjacent neighborhoods. In order to achieve this goal, an oak wilt management plan has been created by our state-qualified oak wilt consultant, Julie Stachecki.

The oak wilt management plan includes:
  • Trenching to disconnect infected red oak roots from non-symptomatic red oak trees.
  • Tree removal and appropriate disposal of infected wood.
  • Stump treatment with herbicide.
  • Monitoring.
This plan strives to remove as few trees as possible in the infected zone. There are non-symptomatic red oak trees in the infected zone, so infected trees will be removed to contain the disease. The infected red oaks will be cut down, chipped and removed from the site.
Treatment and trenching have taken place this winter, and removal of the red oak trees in the infected zone at the two sites will take place in November. Watch for updated signage at the two sites.  
For more information about oak wilt, visit For questions, leave a message for Cascade Parks Committee Chair Ginny Wanty at 616.949.1500. 


Yard Waste Pick Up/Clean Up Day

Wheel barrelThe Township will once again offer bagged yard-waste pick-up in the restricted burn area. This is generally the area west of Buttrick and north of I-96. Tags are available at the reception desk at Township Hall Monday – Friday from 8 am to 5pm (limit 20).

Pick-up will be every Monday from April 10 – May 1.

  • Please have your yard waste near the curb by Sunday at Midnight.
  • Place an orange tag on each bag of leaves or bundle of branches. (No grass clippings, dirt, sod, cement, sand or rocks please).  
  • Bags can weigh no more the 30 pounds.
  • Sticks should be no longer than four feet in length and branches, logs and stumps are not to exceed one inch in diameter.
  • If you have orange tags from last year you plan on using, please call 949-1500 to add your address to the spring 2023 list.
  • This service is only available in the restricted burn area. To review the restricted burn area map, visit and click “Maps” under “Reference Desk”

The Township will have dumpsters for yard waste disposal available again this spring from April 21st – 23rd. Due to the construction of the new Fire Station at 2865 Thornhills, the dumpsters will be located behind the Fire Station #2 building (2990 Buttrick Ave SE.) Please note that the dumpsters are top load, and material will have to be carried up a small set of stairs to be dumped. Employees are not available to help dump.

Cascade will hold it’s bi-annual clean-up day again this spring! Cascade Township residents are invited to drop off non-hazardous household waste at Ada Bible Church (8899 Cascade Road SE) on Saturday May 20th from 8am until noon. Gates will close sharply at noon, so make sure to come early!

Please note:

  • Residents should enter the Ada Bible Church parking lot utilizing the Cascade Road entrance and exit the site using the Quiggle Road exit. Please follow the signage on site.
  • Non-hazardous household waste only, such as appliances, scrap metal, electronics for recycling and paper for shredding.
  • No yard waste. You will need to use the yard-waste dumpsters, the leaf bag pick-up program or other services for yard waste such as leaves, branches and brush
  • No hazardous materials will be allowed. Paint cans that are opened and dried are allowed. Please visit Kent County Department of Public Works for information on hazardous waste disposal resources.
  • Identification is required to verify your residency within Cascade Township.
Services on Site:
  • Republic Services will be available for general trash and junk, large and small appliances and scrap metal. No yard waste or hazardous waste.
  • Shred-it will be available for shredding of up to 100 pounds of office paper and personal documents
  • Valley City Electronic Recycling will be available for computers, televisions, small appliances, cell phones, household batteries and other electronics

All Services subject to availability. Please check the Township website at close to the day to ensure the service you wish to utilize is available. For questions, please call Cascade Township at 616-949-1500.


Public Transportation

Ride The Rapid

The bus route extends bus service on 28th Street east to the Cascade Rd, around Old 28th Street and heads west down 28th Street to Patterson Ave. 

Please click here for more information on schedules, routes, fares, etc.

In addition to the fixed route bus service, any Cascade Township senior 65 and over or persons with disabilities residing within 3/4 mile of the bus route is eligible for GO!Bus services. GO! Bus provides door-to-door transportation services by appointment. A one-time application must be filed prior to making an appointment.

Discounted tickets are available to Cascade residents at the Township office to those who use the GO!Bus.

Please click here for more information on the GO!Bus

Please click here for the GO!Bus service map

Hope Network
Any Cascade Township senior 65 and over or persons with disabilities, living more than 3/4 mile from the bus route, has transportation available through Hope Network. Cascade Township subsidizes this service with Community Development Block Grant and General Fund money.

Hope Network Customer Care Center - 616-243-0876.

Please click here for more information on Hope Network


Toys for Tots Program

The Cascade Township Fire Department will be accepting new, unwrapped toys for the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation. Starting Monday, Nov. 7th through Monday, Dec. 5th, 2022 Toys may be dropped off at Cascade Township Hall, 5920 Tahoe Drive SE. 8a.m. – 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Memorial Day Program

Cascade Township Memorial Day Ceremony
Monday, May 29, 2023 at 10:00am

Join us for our annual Memorial Day ceremony as we honor and remember those who have died in service to our country.  View our Ceremony Program and Speaker Profile.

This special community event will be held outside at Kent District Library – Cascade Township Branch, 2870 Jacksmith Ave. SE.


Cascade Township – July Fourth Celebration 



PDF Icon4th of July Participants Policy

PDF Icon4th of July Non Profit Participation Application

4th of July Fire Truck 4th of July Motorcycle
4th of July Parade 4th of July children
4th of July Horses 4th of July Parade street


Cascade's Metro Cruise Warm Up

Join us for the Cascade Metro Cruise Warmup

Metro Cruise Automobiles
at the Thornapple Centre,  6797 Cascade Rd. (Fowling Warehouse GR parking lot). 
Music by The Soul Syndicate, Food Trucks, Face painting and Balloon Sculpting for the kids, Lots of Show Cars   

The Kent County Sheriff’s Office will auction off an opportunity to participate in a training session with its K-9 Unit.  



Cascade Heritage Festival - 2023

2023 Dates and Info TBD


Join us 5-9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 10 for Cascade Heritage Festival, a community event for all ages. This year’s event will be held outside at Cascade Christian Church, 2829 Thornapple River Drive SE.
The event will include a beer tent, food trucks, cornhole tournament and live music. Additionally, the Cascade Museum will be open 5-7 p.m. for attendees to learn about Cascade’s unique and rich history.
There will be a variety of tasty meals from local food trucks, including Saladino Smoke, Wildwood Farms Taco Truck and Wags Dogs. Attendees can cool off with beer, cider and soft drinks from Bell’s, Founders, Vandermill’s Cider, Painted Turtle Cider and Thornapple Brewing Co. Food and beverages are cash-only.
Throughout the evening, local musician Greg Hudkins will perform hits from the 1960s, ’70s, ’80s and ’90s. The music is free to enjoy. Please bring chairs.

Parking is available on Orange Avenue and Hurley Street.
Cornhole Tournament
The cornhole tournament will begin at 5 p.m. and feature one all-ages division. The cost is $30 per team and includes two Heritage tokens per player. Ten percent of proceeds from the tournament will benefit the McDonald-Osmer American Legion Post. The prizes are $300 for first place, $150 for second place and $100 for third place. Registration and check-in for the tournament will take place 4-5 p.m.

 To learn more about the event and how to register for the cornhole tournament, click here.