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By Miriam Raftery

February 15, 2022 (Lakeside) – Imagine swimming beneath waterfalls alongside fish in a freshwater lake. That dream is all part of the ambitious plans that Lakeside River Park Conservancy has announced for a new park at Channel Road in Lakeside.

Work began on the park in 2004, with creation of a new entrance near 13022 Channel Road. The process was slowed by the recession, but now the organization is fundraising to move forward.

In a newsletter to members, the Lakeside River Park Conservancy states, “We are planning a HUGE freshwater swimming lake. We always knew we would build a community pool because Lakeside is HOT and our community needs one. This lake will take community pools to the next level, with waterfalls and fish! It will be more like the old sandpits than a chlorinated pool. Get your snorkel out! To get a better picture of our vision you can watch this video of Lake Gkula, Woodfordia. Click Here.”  

Plans also include a five-acre children’s play area with areas for different age levels—and each area will have a water feature.

“Safety is a huge priority and we know that 'stranger danger' is a big worry for parents,” the newsletter states. So everything will be fenced and gated so that once in there, only other parental adults will be allowed in and a child we only be allowed out with their parent. The play area will be called “My Big Backyard” because it will feel more like a large yard than a formal recreation space.

Over the past 20 years, the Conservancy has completed a 100-acre restoration of the San Diego River in Lakeside including two miles of trails, with native vegetation providing shade to make trails usable year-round as well as beautiful.

The Conservancy also recently completed an 80-acre restoration in El Monte Valley and built a mile-long trail there.  Next up, they are working to remove fire hazards at the east end of the valley to reduce the risk of a wind-driven fire pushing westward.

These and other projects are supported by membership.  Click the link for information on how to become a member.

For more information, visit


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