Scenes Around Lake Merritt

I love Oakland. There’s such a breadth of landscapes, culture, restaurants, and people. The energy here is real. Today was overcast and cool – so I thought I’d take advantage of the soft light and take a stroll around Lake Merritt. Headphones in, I checked out the latest album from Watsky while taking in the world. A perfect morning. 

Bridge to the Veterans’ Memorial Building flanked by Australian Tea Trees

These beautiful trees are all around Lake Merritt. They have stories in their twisted, vine-like trunks, and they add so much character to the surroundings.

I don’t actually know what this building is for – but I’m guessing it’s a utility shed housing tools for lake maintenance. I like how it’s tucked into this group of trees. 

Children’s Fairyland Sign – These colorful letters are a landmark by the lake.

From this vantage point, it’s difficult to tell that this sign for Children’s Fairyland is perched high atop a hill by the lake. On warm, sunny days, people spend their afternoons relaxing on this hill, scattered on blankets around these colorful letters. Today, the geese claimed it for themselves. 

Lamps Around Lake Merritt – One of more than 120 lamps that light the path.

These lamps connect a string of lights that go all the way around Lake Merritt, and they’ve been here since 1925. According to wikipedia, the lights around the lake were extinguished in 1941 during World War II. They weren’t restored again until 1987.

I like this hill along the path around the lake. It feels like a private forest, and the light peppers the ground through the tree branches.

I would like to know what these numbers are for. I didn’t look carefully, but it’s possible that every tree around the lake has a plate like this one. 

These trees really stand out to me because of their white bark and dramatic branches. I don’t know what they’re called, unfortunately. Here’s a closer look:

Tucked in between Children’s Fairyland and Lakeside Park is the Edoff Memorial Band Stand. I’ve seen community bands play here as crowds gather in the grass and on benches nearby. 

Of course you have to stop to admire the flowers.

I love a good sign – and this one always catches my attention. The building used to be private residences, but now it appears to house businesses. 

Of course, this is just a small sampling of the sights around Lake Merritt. There’s so much more to see, and I may do a series of Lake Merritt posts to show off its many hallmarks. More to come.