Getting Wet

Cleveland Cascade

The wind and rain that the weathernouncers have been predicting has started. It’s been pretty blustery, off and on, and while this weather is tame compared to the weather we experienced in the Midwest it will keep me from spending the morning exploring on my bike. Fortunately, Saturday morning was dry and I was able to get out and walk around the lake.

I took a little time to wander off the main path. On the southeast side of the lake, (near I-580 on Lakeshore) sits Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church. A plaque on the building notes that the church sits on the site where the first Catholic mass was celebrated in what would become Alameda county. It’s a pretty, well maintained building and the doors to the sanctuary were open on Saturday morning so I slipped in to take a peek. There’s something eery about walking into a completely empty church.

A short stroll east along Lakeshore brought me to the Cleveland Cascade park. It was built in the 1920s by architect Howard Gilkey. The cascade was buried in the 1950s, but the pools have been excavated recently and there are plans to restore the whole fountain to it’s original splendor. The stairs flanking the cascade were in heavy use on Saturday by people looking for an aerobic workout. At the top of the hill is a small pool which had been planted with herbs. The gardener had a sense of humor. in each corner of the pool was a recycled toilet tank with well labeled plots of herbs.

(One of the good things about visiting the Cleveland Cascade and preparing this entry was that it led me to The Organic City. The site, created by a couple of grad students at CSU East Bay, collects stories from Oaklanders about Oakland. It’s been left to lay fallow for a couple of years, but it does have some interesting tidbits of info peeking out of the weeds, including this series of stories about the Cleveland Cascasde.)

Toilet Tank Herb GardenCleveland Cascade

Monday January 18, 2010 — Mark —