City of Gaylord
The city of Gaylord was incorporated in March 1922. Since then, it has become a regional business and recreation hub. The city operates under a home-rule city charter, as a council-manager government.
City offices are located in a 25,663-square-foot facility on the east end of town at Main and North Oak streets. The building, topped with a 73-foot spire and clock tower, was finished in the spring of 2008 and also houses council chambers, the Gaylord Police Department and its garage. Photos of scenery in and around Gaylord adorn the building’s hallways and training rooms.
Gaylord developed an Alpine motif in the 1960s, lending a unique charm to the city, which has come to be known also as the “Alpine Village.” The residents of the city adopted Pontresina, Switzerland, in 1965, as Gaylord’s sister city, and the citizens of Switzerland sent Gaylord a boulder from the Swiss Alps in 1989, which now stands at the northwest corner of the Otsego County Building lawn.
Gaylord’s Downtown Development Authority completed a $2-million streetscape project in 1995, enhancing the city’s Alpine theme with stylish downtown lighting, parks, partially bricked pathways, benches and trees. In recent years, numerous downtown-area businesses have invested their own money with state grants to update their façades, keeping the Alpine look fresh and welcoming.
Another DDA project, the Pavilion on Court, hosts farmers markets, concerts, antique markets, car shows and more, and is a central gathering area during Gaylord’s annual Alpenfest and Alpenfrost. The Pavilion was recently renovated to include retractable canvas panels and radiant infrared heaters. This will allow the structure to be used later in the season for events such as the downtown farmers market.
Looking for wildlife? Check out Gaylord’s elk park, located at the Department of Public Works at the end of Seventh Street. Viewing is also available at the end of Grandview Boulevard.
Other parks located within the city include Aspen Park, which offers miles of paved and non-paved trails, the City of Gaylord Ramp Park on South Wisconsin Avenue, Doumas Park at Fourth Street and Maple Avenue, Freel Park on Huron Street, Joseph N. Hale Park on South Otsego Avenue and Second Street and tiny Claude Shannon Park on Main Street.