To help determine how the Park Department should develop and use the new park land, the Park Board established the Bieker Woods Property Committee composed of town officials, members of the Munster Historical Society, and other citizens. This committee recommended the preservation of the nature area in Bieker Woods (west of Columbia Avenue), and restoration of the house and barn (east of Columbia Avenue) to their original appearances.
Construction, which began in early 1995, repaired the siding on the Stallbohm Barn and restored the exterior of the Kaske home to its 1910 appearance with its distinctive green trim. A plaque commemorating the Brass Tavern graces the front entrance to the home. The charm of the interior of the house has been kept although it was also brought up to current building code standards.
Heritage Park Gazebo
The Munster Historical Society has taken an active interest in the property. In October of 1991, the society held its first annual Olde Munster Day celebration at the park. With live music, quilters, and historians in attendance, citizens were able to tour the grounds and become acquainted with the site of Munster's first homestead.
Responding to a request by the Munster Historical Society, the Park Board in 1995 named this parcel containing the old house and barn Heritage Park. The park west of Columbia Avenue will continue to be known as Bieker Woods and is to remain a nature preserve.
With the completion of the Stallbohm barn and Kaske House restoration, a plan to open a museum was announced to the public by the Munster Historical Society at "A Brass Tavern Tea" on May 10, 1997. On April 1, 1998, the Stallbohm Barn and Kaske House property was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Nestled peacefully in Heritage Park west of the Kaske House is the gazebo, which was dedicated on June 26, 1999. A location for some of Munster Parks and Recreation's special events, the gazebo was designed to accentuate the grand history of the Kaske House and Stallbohm Barn. The gazebo serves as a nostalgic backdrop for weddings, family reunios, concerts, and much more.
As it was 150 years ago, this historic property is returning to public use. Now in the center of a bustling suburban community, Heritage Park provides a retreat from traffic and city life, as well as a glimpse of what life must have been like when Munster was young.