The Story Behind Lake Woodlands
Built for both recreation and flood control, Lake Woodlands is the third largest body of water in Montgomery County. The lake covers 203 acres and is one-and-one-half miles long from north to south. From east to west it varies from 400 feet to 2,000 feet. The 1,600-foot earthen dam which runs along Woodlands Parkway holds back about 1,400 acres of water. The concrete spillway is 400 feet wide. There are approximately eight miles of shoreline available for both commercial and residential use. Initially it cost approximately $31 million to develop the lake and the surrounding areas. Today, the lake and surrounding areas are probably worth over a billion dollars.
The residential area along the lake is comprised of about 175 acres, while the commercial and industrial area available for development is approximately 286 acres. There are recreation and entertainment zones as well as a town park and smaller parks including mini-parks. The lake is stocked with a variety of fresh water fish, and only small sailboats or boats with small motors are allowed on the lake. With the completion of the walk along the waterway one can now walk from Lake Robbins to Lake Woodlands. A triathlon uses a portion of the lake each year.
A Bottom of the Lake Party complete with a BBQ cook-off, bands and outdoor activities launched the opening of the lake, May 17-19, 1985. This was such a huge event that the community celebrated for an entire weekend. Proceeds from the cook-off went to local charities, and all events were sponsored by local community groups. There were more than104,000 celebrants in attendance. Souvenirs included hats, t-shirts and stickers. Games, including an adult tug-of-war, were played in the mud.
Almost 26 years later, the lake continues to be a great recreation area with fishing derbies, kayak rentals and a summer venue for Sunday evening concerts. Areas surrounding the lake provide fields for games and large group picnics, as well as a place to fly kites. An observation and fishing area at the south end of the lake offers a splended view and is open for use every day of the year.
By Char Schneider