This afternoon, I was on a wild goose chase in Ashtabula County. Friday, I was invited to a party held by a former public official at her summer place in Ashtabula County. Well, I didn’t to the party and wound up taking in a lot of scenery.
A lot of factors came into play. I always thought her house was around Conneaut right on the lake. However, when I did a Map Quest search of the directions given to me, the location was in the city of Ashtabula itself. The phone number to call led to voicemail and I wound up leaving two before I decided, what the heck, hopping in the car and driving out there with those directions. I could have tried calling yesterday to verify the address that was written down, or ask State Rep. John Patterson how to get there when I saw him at an event yesterday. I could have even asked Ohio Democratic Party Chairman David Pepper this morning at the Euclid Democratic Brunch. Of course, I didn’t know he was invited to the party and I thought that someone would have been picking up the phone at the number I called today. Despite the detour past the I-11 interchange (road construction), driving up and down State Road in Ashtabula until I decided to head North, and driving past all those chemical plants lining the road, I wound up discovering a place that made it almost all worth it.
At the intersection of State Avenue and Route 351 is a place called Lakesshore Park. I’ve driven past there on a rare occasion in the past but never went inside its’ gate like I did today. Laid out on a bluff overlooking Lake Erie, the Park can be called one of Ashtabula’s best kept secrets. It has a historic pavilion right near the beach, apparently much used by the locals. Besides the picnic benches, there were wooden swings where on could sit and look out at the Lake. If fact, I did just that, eating an ice cream cone from a nearby stand.
When I got back home the place was still standing and the only phone message I had been from my father. I learned via Twitter that the event out there was a hit; and the photo of the place didn’t look at all like anything I saw driving to that park.
Photographs by James Valentino