about 300 years, parts of what is now Washington Park have been used
by the residents of Albany for recreational and other public purposes.
Originally granted to the city by the Crown in colonial times, the
Park area has been used as a parade ground, a cemetery, a public square,
and a welfare farm. Shortly after the Civil War, work began on what
is today's park - a manicured combination of gardens and lawn landscaped
in the finest Victorian tradition. With some 100 species of trees
from exotic lands throughout the world, the Park resembles a botanical
Patterned after designs originally drawn up by Frederick Law Olmsted, the designer of New York City's Central Park and Montreal's beautiful Mont Royal Park, Washington Park now totals 84 acres embroidered with carefully groomed flower beds, quiet foot and bicycle paths, tennis courts and towering monuments. Its lake, stocked in the summer, is a popular fishing spot for youngsters and attracts ice skaters in the winter. The Lakehouse, a striking structure with a band shell - is center stage for many cultural, civic, and recreational activities, including the Washington Park Concert Series and Park Playhouse in the summertime. For years the Park has hosted the Tulip Festival which tributes Albany's Dutch past, along with many other public festivals.
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