Lakefront Path Provides Lakeside Beauty

Posted on August 14, 2013

Walks along the lakefront path have been a Lakeside tradition for 140 years.

The lakefront path is special and unique to each Lakesider. Everyone can tell a story about why it is so important and what it means to them.

Through these stories, we understand how it serves to transform the lives of each Lakesider, whether visiting for a day, week or the entire summer. Obviously, it showcases the most dramatic view of Lake Erie where water, islands, skies and stars collide in a masterpiece of nature.

As part of this year’s Lakeside Fund, Lakeside Chautauqua will enhance the lakefront path in an effort to claim and promote the title of being Ohio’s Most Beautiful Mile.

This special shoreline path is a place where sunsets are admired, worship takes place, healing begins, a marriage proposal is made, weddings are celebrated, fireworks delight, children share stories and Lakesiders engage in conversation.

The one mile path contains a few gardens along the way, thanks to the hard work of generous homeowners, but many longer sections only support weeds and invasive vines.

Aging bench seating is found along the entire stretch but does not allow for groups and families to gather easily.

Today, various programs and activities take place along the shoreline, including Wednesday Family Picnics, Sunday Family Night in the Park, numerous weddings and concerts at the Steele Memorial Bandstand, as well as recreational activities such as tennis, miniature golf, swimming and sailing.

The various programs and features that Lakeside already claims, such as the Lakeside Plant Sale, Beautification Awards and Annual Garden Tour, America in Bloom national award and The Memorial Garden at Chautauqua Park, serve as catalysts for this exciting initiative.

This multi-phase project will take place with strong support for the 2013 Lakeside Fund.

Lakeside Chautauqua intends to remove toxic weeds and poison ivy that hug the rocks along the shore as we envision a beautiful multi-season perennial garden of native plants stretching along the entire Lakefront Path from Oak Avenue to Poplar Avenue. Maintenance of the garden spaces will be critical, so irrigation systems will be installed to ensure quality care of the lakefront gardens.

For 140 years, the shoreline has also been a place for conversation, which is core to Chautauqua.

In the first phase, small paver “conversation terraces” will be added along the waterfront where families, groups and couples can gather to enjoy an afternoon or evening discussion.

Individual seating, such as Adirondack chairs, will be added to these terraces. As well, educational discussions and religious studies can take place surrounded by the beauty of the lake.

Today, we celebrate the intimate face-to-face conversation of Chautauqua.

The Lakeside Chautauqua Foundation has already received feedback about Ohio’s Most Beautiful Mile from the various lakefront walks held this summer.

To submit feedback or to support the development of Ohio’s Most Beautiful Mile, contact Gretchen Colón at (419) 798-5396 or