|Grand Staircase at Lake Park|
I just came back from a trip to Louisville, one of Frederick Law Olmsted's largest projects. He designed their entire park system, including boulevards. You'll find the Olmsted Parks conservancy here- a group designed to promote and preserve the parks systems in Louisville. Everywhere I travel, I try to find the gems that he designed in the late 1800s, just to see what condition they are in more than 100 years later. Often, amazingly, they continue to thrive, though some of his plans went "rogue" and have changed immensely. His plans often called for a series of parks which could be connected by broad parkways. I've been lucky to see his parks in New York City, Montreal, Louisville, and Chicago. I've included a few pictures so you can see the similarities.
|A fishing pond at Central Park NY|
|The Dairy Barn at Central Park|
|Mount Royal Park at Montreal was also designed by Olmsted|
|The bridge to the left of this photo, from Tyler Park in Louisville, was designed by Olmsted's son, John|
|Olmsted even designed private gardens like this home which is now a B&B in New Hampshire|
In Milwaukee he designed Lake Park, Riverside Park, and Washington Park. Considerable changes have been made since 1900. Washington Park used to be the local zoo, so you can imagine what has been done since then. Olmsted always liked water features, open spaces for play, and trees. You can see a list of his other parks and learn more about this man who designed many parks.
Lake Park is the park for which Olmsted will truly be remembered in Milwaukee. It was his design which led to the beach being created with Lincoln Memorial Drive. The bluffs offer a view of the lake, though much of it is obscured by overgrown trees now. The best views are often in wintertime. You can enjoy the lions' bridge, grand staircase, promenades (Oak Leaf trail), and tour the lighthouse on a weekend. What started as a six hole golf course now offers Night Glow Golf and a few more holes. There's lawn bowling and athletic fields. You can even enjoy an outdoor concert at the stage. East Newberry Boulevard extends 12 blocks from Lake Park to Riverside Park. It extends the parks in a beautiful way. It's honored by being listed as one of the APA's great places in America because of its beauty, shaded canopy and landscaped median. When it was originally built, it had 20 foot wide sidewalks with a horse lane in the median. Times have changed.
|Golf at Lake Park|
|North Point Lighthouse in Lake Park|
|Waterfall through Lake Park ravine|
|Lions Bridge at Lake Park|
|Kids love the secret slides, but they are big enough for adults|
|Borrow a kayak if you're a member|
|Kids and adults can try to climb the wall at Riverside UEC|
|Bike Polo court|
|horse shoe pits at Washington Park|
|Washington Park Urban Ecology Center in winter|
|You can listen to music here during summer|
|Pretty lagoon with bridges|