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Lakewood Beach - Hickory Twnp PA

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In late 1919 the Eastbrook Outing Association decided to open a small recreational park on a 25-acre property west of Eastbrook. A dam was constructed on Hettenbaugh Run and a small lake was basically filled in by the summer of 1920. A public contest was held in June 1920 to select a name and “Lakewood Park,” submitted by Miss Marguerite Lackey of Ray Street, was the winning entry. A large pavilion was erected and visitors flocked to the park for summer picnics, swimming outings, camping trips, and family reunions. John D. Rung Sr. & his wife Olive purchased the property in November 1925 (renamed “Lakewood Beach”) and made many improvements, adding private cottages, a bathing house, a restaurant, a baseball field, boat rentals, and wintertime ice skating. The Rung’s and their children operated the small resort area for over twenty years. John & Lillian O’Neill became partners with the Rung’s in the mid-1940’s. (c1940) Full Size


An advertisment that appeared in the New Castle News from July 1926. Full Size


The O’Neill’s took over full ownership in April 1948. In the coming years O’Neill’s Lakewood Beach, known for it’s popular Saturday night square and polka dances, remained a popular local hangout. The park declined in attendance during the 1960’s and lake eventually became filled with silt. The lake was drained during the summer of 1971, but a plan to dredge and refill it apparently never happened. Rung sold the property in 1973 and the pavilion was utilized as an auction hall during the mid-1970’s. William & Celeste Stiles purchased the property in 1978 and opened a disco that thrived for a short time. I believe the property was basically shuttered a few years later and the pavilion was lost to a fire on the night of Tuesday, October 11, 1983. The property sat vacant until Joe and Kathy Grimm (she sadly passed away in 2009) acquired it in about 2000. The Grimm’s rebuilt the facility and reopened it for picnics and other gatherings. It can still be rented today. (c1930) Full Size


(1961)

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Comment

  1. east brook to lakewood beach was one big playground for me from age 5 to 18 years old

    charles s mizner · 06/17/2014 04:29 PM · #

  2. I think the last year for swimming in the lake was the summer of 1965 or 1966

    carrie cade · 06/18/2014 10:58 PM · #

  3. I literally grew up in that lake. Oh so many good memories.

    CadeEdie (McAnany) · 06/29/2014 10:02 PM · #

  4. Kathi and I purchased the recreational park
    in 1990. After 12 years of being closed following the fire of 1978 we opened.

    The new park is from Lakewood Neshannock Fall road to the former one way bridge
    next to Steve and Deanna Caldararo’s home.

    To date October 1st 2014 we have had 240
    Events held in the 5 new pavillions and Outdoor Bar. Kathi passed in 2009 but Joe
    continues to hold reunions of all kinds
    and meetings. Pictures of Lakewood as you knew it are welcome on the internet or sent
    to Joe Grimm—256 Lakewood Gardens Rd NC 16105

    Joe Grimm · 10/01/2014 11:36 PM · #

  5. I always went to that park as a kid in late 50s & 60s my brother Ted was ther when his best friend Ed Pape fell off the sliding board and hit his head and dround it was in 50s

    William R Rebmann · 01/13/2015 06:05 AM · #

  6. Lakewood was the center of our universe year around ! Good times with so many friends. Thanks for the memories.

    Nancy Wettich Toth · 01/13/2015 08:52 AM · #

  7. TRIED ICE SKATING IN WINTER MONTHS BUT TO NO AVAIL MY ANKLES WOULD NOT SUPPORT MY PLEASINGLY PLUM BODY. MY BROTHER CHARLES SISTERS ISABEL AND ELIZABETH SUCCEEDED IN ICE SKATING . ELIZABETH HAS A SCAR TRYING TO HELP SOMEONE UP OVER ONE EYE. WHICH SHE ALMOST LOST.. BUT THE 50S AND EARLY 60S WERE THE GREATEST TIMES OF OUR LIVES. SO MANY GREAT MEMORIES TO CHERISH. THANK YOU LAWRENCE COUNTY MEMOIRS.

    Mary Mizner Nichols · 03/01/2015 12:07 PM · #

  8. There are a few mistakes in first paragraph to my recolections, but I appreciate this site. The last year the lake had water in it was summer of 1965. The lake was drained and never filled again.

    Edie McAnany Cade · 05/30/2015 07:30 PM · #

  9. Does anybody remember who built the first dance hall and the year it burned? Also, I’d love to see some old pictures of the lake if anyone would like to share. There is one of my brother, Butch, ice skating when he was four that I am searching for. It was in the New Castle News probably in the early ’40s.

    Bobbi (rung) Morris · 06/08/2015 03:45 PM · #

  10. Great times there in the ’50’s
    Edie I think I remember you. Russell was your husband? Laura your sister in law?
    Richard J. Harvey
    rjharvey15@gmail.com

    Richard J. Harvey · 01/17/2016 09:55 PM · #

  11. I have one photo of my Grandmother and Great Grandmother in a row boat from when they went to Lakewood Beach. I would say the photo was taken in about 1930, my grandmother was born in 1919 and she looks to be in her late teens in the photo. Their last names was Reid, Hiles and Younkin.

    Bradley W Hall Sr · 07/02/2016 07:41 AM · #

  12. often visited my aunt pearl (cook) who lived along the highway along the lake. Ah, the good old days.

    george h · 07/24/2016 01:29 AM · #