HIAWATHA LAKE Block Print by Laura Wilder.
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Hiawatha Lake is a man made lake in Syracuse’s south side Onondaga Park. Originally a city reservoir, it was purchased by the city of Syracuse in about 1900. The reservoir had rip-rapp stone sides and an adjoining oak and hickory grove. A local citizen John McCarthy added swimming facilities and the reservoir became a community swimming pool in 1911. An adjoining modern swimming facility known as Onondaga Pool has since replaced swimming in the Lake.
The Lake also freezes over in winter and becomes a community skating rink.
Hiawatha Lake and Lagoon includes a 60 ft round island accessible by way of a small arched footbridge. A Gazebo Bandstand was added to the island which is a picturesque setting for weddings, photos and enjoyable band concerts. The adjoining groves are used for picnics.
Laura Wider and husband Bob visited the park this fall and were charmed by the old band gazebo on the little island as well as the historic homes which ring water‘s edge. To use Laura’s words: “the place is loaded with romance…”.