GREENFIELD — Those who enjoy birds — or simply a bird’s-eye view — can flock to Beckenholdt Park in Greenfield to check out two new amenities.

Work was recently completed on an observation tower and an informational bird panel at the park, which sits at the southwest corner of Franklin Street and CR 300 North.

The 23-foot-tall tower was built to give visitors a better view of the park’s natural amenities, including a pond, wetlands, prairie grasses and a number of indigenous trees.

“It’s a beautiful park but in the summertime the tall prairie grasses tend to hide the beauty from many points of observation, so we knew we wanted to build something with some height to it,” said Josh Gentry, maintenance operations manager for the Greenfield Parks Department.

Gentry sketched out a tower design on a napkin and presented it to Greenfield’s city inspector Erikk Knapp, who helped him tweak the design and move forward with the project.

The tower was built with wooden utility poles donated by Greenfield Power & Light, along with scrap materials the parks department had from construction at Depot Street Park.

It was originally going to be located at the top of a hill in the park, but a flatter location was chosen to allow for the addition of an ADA-accessible ramp later this year.

“That will open that amenity to people of all abilities, which is awesome because that’s what we’re striving for with everything we build these days,” said Gentry.

The tower — which is now accessible by stairs — features a 10-by-10-foot platform situated 12 feet above the ground, providing visitors with a 360-degree view of the park. The tallest point of the pitched roof reaches 23 feet from the ground.

Gentry has been thrilled to see the tower being put to use and has spotted visitors snapping senior pictures and baby pictures from atop the platform, in addition to capturing the sunrise as a mist rises up over the pond.

“It turned out better than I could have imagined,” said Gentry, who is also happy with the new bird informational panel, which sits 40 yards southeast of the tower.

Former Greenfield resident Maura Frazier donated the money for the educational art installation, which was built in memory of Greenfield mayor Chuck Fewell’s grandson, Michael.

“At first, she wanted it installed by Michael’s Playground behind the junior high school, but in the end decided it made more sense to be installed in a park with more nature and more birds,” said Adam Wilson, a friend of Frazier’s who leads bird-watching walks through the park.

The flip-panel installation was created in partnership with the Greenfield Birders organization, led by Wilson and his wife, Sara.

Standing 10 feet tall and eight wide, it features 15 ten-inch blocks representing 15 birds that are native to the area, and have been spotted at some point in Beckenholdt Park.

Each block features a picture and information on each bird, along with a map of where the species has been spotted in the park.

When all flipped in the same direction, the blocks create a colorful scene of two cardinals.

Wilson thinks the interactive nature of the sign will entice visitors to stop and flip the panels to learn more about local birds.

“Beckenholdt has more than 100 species coming through each year, so it’s nice to be able to highlight some of those birds a lot of people don’t recognize and a few people likely haven’t heard of at all,” he said.

Wilson thinks the observation tower will also come in handy when observing birds.

“It will give us a nice view that we don’t normally have,” said Wilson. “There are a few birds in particular we’re hoping to utilize the stand for, like some birds that build their nests in grass, so it will be neat to sit above the tall grasses and look down.”

He encourages those interested in bird watching to follow the Greenfield Birders page on Facebook and to plan to come out to bird-watching walks at Beckenholdt Park this spring, tentatively scheduled for 8 a.m. the second and fourth Saturdays from April through October.

Gentry encouraged the public to also follow the Greenfield Parks to learn more about upcoming events, including programming centered around the new tower.

“There’s a major eclipse coming up in 2024, so we’re talking about doing a viewing party on the lookout tower for that,” he said.