The method of planning used for this Master Plan was the Systems Approach to Planning (MDNR, 2006). The Systems Approach is a three part planning method: examine the information already available; collect public input; and develop goals and objectives based on areas of need from public input and the existing information. This is one of the recommended planning methods by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. The first step in the Systems Approach planning process was to conduct accurate inventories to determine what recreational and cultural facilities already existed in Benzie County. A lengthy process was used to ensure the inventories were comprehensive and complete. First, all township, village, and city supervisors in Benzie County were interviewed. The information gathered from the local officials was compared with the existing inventories from the 1992, 1997, and 2002 Recreation Master Plans. A meeting was then held where members of the Parks and Recreation Commission reviewed all of the inventory data that had been collected to ensure accuracy. Benzie County residents involved with recreational and cultural activities were also consulted to verify existing entities and accuracy of information collected. Eventually, a thorough and accurate inventory was produced after compiling all of the data. The second step in the planning process was to gather public input. Several methods of gathering public input were utilized: survey; public input session; historical review; and monthly meetings. A survey was mailed to 2000 residents in Benzie County. A thorough analysis of the data collected is available in Chapter Five of this plan. A public input session was held at the Mill’s Community House on October 27, 2008. The results of this meeting are included in Chapter Five and the Documentation section of this plan. Public input was also analyzed from the 1992, 1997, and 2002 Recreation Plans, as well as the Benzie County 2020 Comprehensive Plan. Additionally, the PRC received public input during their monthly scheduled meetings at the Benzie County Government Center. The final step in the planning process was to reconcile the inventories with the feedback collected from the numerous opportunities for public input. This was performed in order to develop an effective set of goals and objectives that accurately reflect the needs of Benzie County residents and visitors, while not duplicating the existing facilities and services of the County. By using this Systems Approach, the PRC is confident that their goals, objectives, and action strategies accurately reflect the needs of Benzie County residents and visitors.