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(85) stories found containing 'olmsted'


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  • Olmsted Day Festival Offers Fun For the Family in Lake Wailes Park March 23

    News Staff Reports|Updated Mar 18, 2024

    A day of free fun for the entire family is offered in Lake Wailes Park on Saturday, March 23 as the annual Olmsted Day event takes place. The event is the Lake Wales observance of Arbor Day and takes place in the shade of the historic Olmsted Oaks in the park. Entertainment, exhibits, games, musical performances, and food trucks form part of the attraction, along with vendors offering live plants and trees and a wide range of other products. Special exhibits will be offered...

  • City Commission, CRA Considering Sale of City Park For Apartment Complex

    News Staff reports|Updated Feb 15, 2024

    A "pocket park" lying in a quiet neighborhood of single-family homes on the near north side of the city may be converted to a parking lot to serve a new housing complex, Lake Wales News has learned. The Lake Wales City Commission approved a "consent agenda" item on January 16 transferring ownership of the 3.566 acre Lake Alta Park to the Lake Wales Community Redevelopment Agency. The city commission also sits as the CRA board. That body can negotiate property sales directly to...

  • Heritage Volunteers Landscape McLaughlin Campus in Driving Rain

    News Staff Reports|Updated Jan 3, 2024

    Lake Wales got a good bit greener last Saturday, not only because of welcome rains, but due to the efforts of a team of volunteers from Lake Wales Heritage who braved the damp to landscape the campus of McLaughlin Middle/High School. In a six-hour effort the group planted more than 40 trees on school grounds. "It was a day of bonding for the volunteers, a really rainy day" for the thoroughly saturated group of volunteers, said Heritage Vice President Ron Poller. "It was an...

  • Historic Woman's Club Auditorium to Receive CRA Help

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Nov 29, 2023

    A CRA grant will help a local not-for-profit save an aging historic building that serves as an important civic space in downtown Lake Wales. The Lake Wales Woman's Club was awarded a $50,000 grant that will help the 100-year-old organization pay for a new roof for their auditorium at 275 East Park Avenue. The funds will also help remediate mold, according to CRA staff. The grant meets three of the goals cited in the Lake Wales Connected plan recommendations, Assistant City...

  • Lake Wales Main Street Director Honored for "Lifetime Achievement"

    Special to the News|Updated Nov 20, 2023

    Ronni Wood, a seasoned and dedicated professional in the field of downtown redevelopment, was honored with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award by the Florida Redevelopment Association (FRA). The remarkable accolade was presented during the 2023 FRA Annual Conference and Awards Reception, where the outstanding contributions of community organizations, as well as individual excellence, were celebrated. With a career spanning several decades, Ronni Wood's journey in...

  • Lake Wales Opportunities Highlighted in Documentary Film Premier

    Rachel Negrete, News Staff Writer|Updated Nov 6, 2023

    More than 80 community leaders and interested citizens were present Thursday night for the premier showing of the documentary film "Lake Wales Envisioned," which lays out the case for changes to development codes that may redefine future development in the rapidly-growing community. The film is among the final work products of the city-funded project known as Lake Wales Envisioned, an effort to guide the city through a future fraught with both opportunities and perils. The...

  • Public Health a Winner in Lake Wales Envisioned Plan

    John Simmerman, Active Towns Initiative|Updated Oct 24, 2023

    Editor's Note: This guest Commentary is the third of a series of guest editorials that will address the effort known as Lake Wales Envisioned. Public health will be a big winner if the Lake Wales City Commission adopts the Lake Wales Envisioned plan. It is a comprehensive, community-led vision for the next 10, 25, and 50 years that Olmsted would be proud of. As a health promotion professional with over 30 years of global experience focusing on the intersection of our built env...

  • City Fills Vacant Horticulturist Position As Downtown Tree Planting Approaches

    News Staff Reports|Updated Oct 23, 2023

    As the City of Lake Wales prepares to begin a major tree-planting effort as part of the Lake Wales Connected effort, a long-vacant horticulturist spot has been filled by a long-time Lakeland gardening expert. Kevin Polk, a certified horticulturist who spent several years supervising the landscape at the City of Lakeland's Hollis Gardens, will take the reins overseeing plans to revive the landscapes in the city's historic core. After spending years reviving the 1928 landscape...

  • Lake Wales Envisioned Adopted by City Commission

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Oct 23, 2023

    In a major step toward addressing the challenge presented by an enormous wave of growth, the Lake Wales city commission voted to adopt a resolution in support of the Lake Wales Envisioned plan. Facing development proposals that would readily triple the population of the city, the board had agreed to fund the planning study in January, leading to months of effort by planners, residents, and city staff. The project included numerous public meetings, open workshops, webinars,...

  • 1000 Friends of Florida Endorses the Lake Wales Envisioned Plan

    Paul Owens, President, 1000 Friends of Florida|Updated Oct 12, 2023

    Editor's Note: This guest Commentary is the second of a series of guest editorials that will address the effort known as Lake Wales Envisioned. Since our founding in 1986, 1000 Friends of Florida has advocated citizen-driven planning to protect our state's environment and quality of life amid its rapid growth. That explains why we enthusiastically endorsed the Lake Wales Envisioned process from its launch last winter. And it's why we're now calling on city leaders to approve...

  • Embrace Lake Wales Envisioned: A Model for the Nation

    Anne Neal Petri and Lucy Lawliss|Updated Oct 6, 2023

    Editor's Note: This guest Commentary, offered by two distinguished scholars of the works of the father and son who shared the honored name of Frederick Law Olmsted, is the first of a series of guest editorials that will address the effort known as Lake Wales Envisioned. A century ago, Lake Wales was in the news: The most famous landscape architect in America, Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., was transforming one of Florida's highest points into Bok Tower Gardens, today a National...

  • Bok Tower Admissions Price to Increase Again

    News Staff Report|Updated Sep 26, 2023

    The cost of enjoying a day in the relaxing environment at Bok Tower Gardens may add a bit of unfortunate stress to budgets after the gardens announced that the their admission rates are rising once again. Beginning October 1, adult general admission will be $20, while children ages 6-17 will get in for $10. Children 5 and under will continue to be admitted free. Annual passes for individuals and families are available. A statement issued by Bok Tower Gardens called the increas...

  • Lake Wales Cited for Community Health Possibilities

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Sep 22, 2023

    Lake Wales will become a healthier city if traditional neighborhood design standards are applied to future development proposals here, according to studies shared by Dr. Joanna Lombard of the University of Miami. Lombard, who has dual appointments to the university's medical school and the school of architecture, was the lead panelist on a webinar hosted this week by 1000 Friends of Florida to discuss the health and wellness impacts of where we live. The significant increases...

  • Temporary Traffic Pattern Change Coming to Downtown Lake Wales Starting Monday

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Sep 6, 2023

    The changing face of downtown Lake Wales is moving forward as contractors begin the second phase of a multi-part project to reconstruct Park Avenue between Wetmore Street and Scenic Highway. A closure of a block of First Street will begin Monday morning, August 28, and is expected to last until November. At that time the street will reopen along with the completed western block of Park Avenue between First and Wetmore, which will then be open to two-way traffic for the first...

  • Dover and Kohl Win Prestigious Seaside Prize for Planning Designs

    Special to the News|Updated Aug 13, 2023

    The partners who founded a planning firm that has become closely identified with Lake Wales have been announced as the 2024 recipients of the prestigious Seaside Prize, presented annual by the SEASIDE Institute. The award will recognize Victor Dover and Joe Kohl, who in 1987 founded the Miami-based town planning firm, Dover, Kohl & Partners. The prize, which is awarded annually, celebrates individuals or organizations whose life's work or accomplishments are emblematic of the...

  • Beauty Not Forgotten in McLaughlin Expansion

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Aug 5, 2023

    An aggressive facilities expansion to add a high school to the campus of McLaughlin School of Excellence has been devastating to the landscape at the school, but help is coming from unexpected directions, according to McLaughlin Principal Dr. Debra Wright-Hudson. A local non-profit, private citizens, and the project contractor are seeing to the green side of things by assisting school leaders in providing new gardens around two sides of the school. Wright-Hudson lauded the...

  • Brick Streets, Brick Facades Transforming Park Avenue

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Aug 5, 2023

    Bricks may become the new buzzword for downtown Lake Wales. The rapid changes coming to Park Avenue under the Lake Wales Connected project include a street completely resurfaced with traditional brick pavers to emphasize the historic significance of the downtown area. Now those bricks are being joined by the newly-exposed original brick facades of historic buildings that have been hidden behind stucco for years. The work is being undertaken by individual property owners,...

  • Lake Wales May Grow Better, Not Just Bigger, Residents Told at Envision Presentation

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Jul 19, 2023

    A vision of Lake Wales as a city that embraces new neighborhoods built to traditional standards while preserving vast swaths of open space was presented to an eager audience Tuesday evening by city planners who painted a clear picture of that potential. City planners Victor Dover and Eric Pate of Dover, Kohl & Partners shared the status of the several reports included in the broad Lake Wales Envisioned plan. The process was initiated by the City of Lake Wales late last year...

  • New Streetscapes Planted in Druid Hills to Expand "Garden City" Effort

    News Staff Reports|Updated Jul 3, 2023

    Fourteen new Southern Live Oaks and ten Florida Holly trees were planted last week as the latest landscaping contribution toward recreating the "City in a Garden" ideal of Lake Wales founders. Lake Wales Heritage, an Olmsted Conservancy, undertook the plantings as part of their city-wide efforts. The trees in the Druid Hills neighborhood are the latest step by the Heritage organization toward completing the landscape design of Frederick Law Olmsted Jr., who planned both the...

  • Lake Wales Envisioned Process Moving Ahead, Rotarians Told

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Jun 15, 2023

    A vision for the long-term future of the Lake Wales region that shifts away from the contemporary development style toward "traditional neighborhoods" was the subject of discussion at the Lake Wales Breakfast Rotary Thursday morning. "Most towns are already 100 years old when they decide what they want to be when they grow up," city planner Victor Dover told more than two dozens in attendance, explaining that Lake Wales has a huge head start due to the efforts of the city's...

  • Lake Wales Woman's Club Has Big Impact on Community

    Special to the News|Updated Jun 8, 2023

    The outsized impact of a relatively small number of Lake Wales women continues to shape and improve the lives of Lake Wales residents. With only two dozen members, the GFWC Woman's Club of Lake Wales continues to be a dynamic contributing force within the community. Part of the international Greater Federation of Women's Clubs, the local organization has served the community for more than 100 years. Operating from their historic clubhouse and auditorium at 275 East Park...

  • Greenways, Blueways, New Street and Neighborhood Designs Among Ideas Offered by Citizens at Hands-on Workshop

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Apr 26, 2023

    A creative group of Lake Wales area citizens joined with urban design and traffic planners Saturday morning at the James Austin Center to begin the process of designing an alternative future for the City of Lake Wales. Future neighborhood development types, street designs, greenways, preferred placement of residential developments, and even a "blueway" trail connecting to Winter Haven were among suggestions that emerged from teams working around maps and charts. The process,...

  • Saturday "Family Fun" Day to Include Kids' Games, Bands, Beer Garden

    News Staff Reports|Updated Apr 26, 2023

    A chance to relax in the shade, enjoy food from your favorite food truck, listen to four different bands, and let the kids burn off steam as they learn and play is expected to draw crowds to Lake Wailes Park Saturday. The 10:00 am to 8:00 pm event will include a kite festival, a family-feud style trivia game, nature walks, a giant inflatable obstacle course, nature walks, a "fishing pond," and a wide variety of games and prizes for adults and kids. A silent auction and gift...

  • Lake Wailes Park Festival Grows Family Fun, Music, Food, and Games

    News Staff Reports|Updated Apr 20, 2023

    Lake Wailes Park will again host a day of family fun on Saturday, April 29 as the city celebrates the annual Olmsted Day in the Park. This years' event promises to be bigger and better than ever as plenty of new features and attractions are being added. Food trucks, lots of games for both kids and adults, live bands, and the added feature of "Beers With Pioneers," a beer-tasting event, will make the day fun for every member of the family. For kids, an inflatable obstacle...

  • Parks Master Plans to be Developed for Seven City Parks

    News Staff Reports|Updated Mar 27, 2023

    A major effort to develop a master plan to govern the future development of seven parks in the city of Lake Wales is the goal of a new contract Catalyst Design Group. The project was recently approved by the city commission. The planning effort will cover Lake Wailes Park, Kiwanis Park and Crystal Lake Park, which form the core of the city's park system. It will also include the city's soccer complex on Hunt Brothers Road, the Northwest Complex/Frasier Field park, the Little...

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