The City of Rochester started construction in 1873 of a gravity water system connecting Hemlock Lake to a reservoir in the city. The current Reservoir in Highland Park was completed in 1876. In 1887, George Ellwanger and Patrick Barry donated 20 acres of land adjoining the reservoir for the beginning of the public park system in Rochester. Over the years the original donation has grown to the 150 acre Highland Park, and to the 12,000 acre Monroe County Parks system consisting of 22 separate parks. The Ellwanger/Barry gift specified that the city would hire a landscape engineer to establish a first class arboretum with numerous trees donated from the Ellwanger/Barry Mt. Hope Nurseries. The city hired Frederick Law Olmsted Sr and Sons to design the park. Olmsted took advantage of the glacial topography of the park and in 1890 built the Children’s Pavilion on the high point of the park just east of the reservoir.
This Sunday’s hike will explore Highland Park with an emphasis on seven rare trees identified by the park department and the Sunken Gardens behind the Warner Castle.
All hikers will meet at the front of the Lamberton Conservatory on Reservoir Ave just east of South Ave. Following the hike, join us for a social at the Distillery Restaurant south of the park on Mt Hope Ave.
From Springwater: Take NY 15A north from Springwater through Lima and Rush. (At last check, I390 was being repaved from Avon to NY 251 and is a single lane). Stay on NY 15A into the city. Cross Westfall Rd and stay to the right onto South Ave. In 1.1 miles, turn right onto Reservoir Ave. The Conservatory is on the left and parking is available on Reservoir Ave.
From Honeoye: Take US 20A west to Hemlock. Turn right onto NY 15A and follow the directions above.
From Dansville and Geneseo: Take I-390N to Rochester. Use exit 16B for NY 15A. Cross Westfall Rd and stay to the right onto South Ave. In 1.1 miles, turn right onto Reservoir Ave. The Conservatory is on the left and parking is available on Reservoir Ave.
From Naples: Take NY 21N out of Naples. Bear left onto CR 12. In 5.6 miles, turn left onto NY 64N. In 13 miles, turn left on 5 & 20. Turn right on NY 444N toward Victor. In 7 miles, turn left onto NY 96N. In 2.8 miles, use the right lane to merge onto I-490W to Rochester. Stay on I-490 into the city. Take the right exit 17 to Goodman St. Turn left onto Goodman St for 0.8 miles. Turn right onto Pinetum Dr. Stay to the left onto Reservoir Ave then right to stay on Reservoir Ave. The Conservatory is on the right and parking is available along Reservoir Ave.
From Canandaigua: To NY-332 N to the Thruway. Keep to the left at the entrance for I-90 West toward Rochester and Buffalo. Take the first exit 45 for I-490 W to Rochester. Take Exit 17 to Goodman St. Turn left onto Goodman St for 0.8 miles. Turn right onto Pinetum Dr. Stay to the left onto Reservoir Ave then right to stay on Reservoir Ave. The Conservatory is on the right and parking is available along Reservoir Ave.
Directions to the Social: Head west of Reservoir Ave across South Ave to Mt Hope Ave. Turn left onto Mt Hope Ave. In 0.3 miles, turn left onto Stewart St. The Distillery is on the right.