Bde Maka Ska (formerly Lake Calhoun) was officially renamed on January 29, 2018, and its new name means 'White Earth Lake' in the Dakota language. Bde Maka ska is one of the three big lakes (there are five total) in Southwest Minneapolis known as the Minneapolis Chain of Lakes, along with Lake Harriet and Lake of the Isles. The three lakes are in very desirable part of the city, and the multi-million dollar houses surrounding them are indicative of this.
Bde Maka Ska is a very popular summer destination in part because of Bde Maka Ska Park, which is teeming with activities that nature lovers will thoroughly enjoy. It has archery, a biking path, a walking path, a soccer field, a softball field, a fishing pier, and much more. It also has a picnic area so you can enjoy a nice picnic with your friends and/or family on a hot summer afternoon. Don't forget the lemonade.
Another enjoyable nearby attraction is Bde Maka Ska North Beach. It's a great place to sunbathe, take a dip in the lake, and to people watch. It also has a biking path, a walking path, and a playground for kids when they need to run around and burn off some energy.
The William Berry Park is halfway between Bde Maka Ska and Lake Harriet, and it's one of the last remaining native plant communities in Minneapolis. It's almost pristine from the time it was carved out by ice glaciers, and it's a lush and green respite in the middle of the city. It has a walking path and a biking path, a playground, archery, and a picnic area.
Lake Harriet is one of the three big lakes (there are five total) in Southwest Minneapolis known as the Minneapolis Chain of Lakes, along with Bde Maka Ska (formerly Lake Calhoun) and Lake of the Isles. The three lakes are in a very desirable part of the city, and the multi-million dollar houses surrounding them are indicative of this.
Lake Harriet is one of the most popular lakes to visit in the summer because of the bandshell in Lake Harriet Park. The bandshell is one of the hosts for Music in the Parks, a program which offers daily free concerts (except Wednesday) all summer long, ranging from jazz to pop to swing . Lake Harriet Park also participates in Movies in the Parks (same link as the prior one), showing free movies throughout the summer as well.
Lyndale Park Rose Garden is another popular destination near Lake Harriet. If you like roses, you will not want to miss this park. It has 100 varieties with over 3,000 plants. It's a cornucopia of colors, and the fragrance is refreshing on a sunshiny summer day. It is the second-oldest rose garden in the country, and it covers 1.5 acres of land. It was designated an official All-America Rose Selections (AARS) test park in 1946.
If you are a keen observer of our feathered friends, you'll want to visit the (Thomas Sadler) Roberts Bird Sanctuary, which is by Lake Harriet as well. The sanctuary is 31 acres of pristine wetlands and woodlands, and there are plenty of pathways and walkways upon which you can take a nice Sunday stroll. There are 220 species (and counting) of birds at the sanctuary, and the sanctuary is committed to keeping the environment as natural and minimally-invasive for the residents as possible.
Lake of the Isles is an engineered lake, manufactured to create something aesthetically pleasing out of the natural environment. It is one of the three big lakes (there are five total) in Southwest Minneapolis known as the Minneapolis Chain of Lakes, along with Bde Maka Ska (formerly Lake Calhoun) and Lake Harriet. The three lakes are in a very desirable part of the city, and the multi-million dollar houses surrounding them are indicative of this.
There is an interesting monument near the Lake of the Isles. It is the Peavey Fountain, and it was donated in 1891 by Frank Hutchinson Peavey as a drinking fountain for horses. In 1917, it was dedicated as a memorial to the horses of the 151st Field Artillery Minnesota National Guard who were killed in battle. It's an important part of Minneapolis history, but easy to overlook.
There is a Lake of the Isles Park, of course, and it is chock-full of fun things to do. It has a biking path and a walking path, a fishing pier, a hockey rink, an ice-skating rink, and a soccer field. It also has a decorative fountain in addition to a drinking fountain, too. When it was created, the idea was to create a sustainable park that is both visually stunning as well as historically respectful. The park is also meant to maintain optimal sustainability and user friendliness.
A beloved part of the Lake of the Isles Park is the Lake of the Isles Off-Leash Dog Park. It is completely fenced in, and there are seven areas in which your dog can run around off leash and make new friends. It's a great place to bring dogs and relax, knowing that they have the freedom to race around to their hearts' content. It's a great place to hang out with tons of pooches frolicking about all around you.
There is another popular neighborhood park to the north that is called Kenwood Park. It has sloping hilltops and leafy green open areas that make it a pleasure to walk through on the walking path. If you're more athletic, you'll enjoy the softball field and a tennis court. There is a playground for the little ones, and there's a picnic area when you're ready for lunch. There is also a Little Free Library if you feel like taking a book or leaving one.