Swimming at Woodside Lodge

A snapshot from August 1938 captures the joy of cooling down in the Nottawasaga River on a hot summer’s day.

June 16, 2023 | | Back Story

Nothing beats a refreshing swim on a hot summer day.

The people in this photo, snapped by Louise Goodeve in August 1938, would probably agree. They were part of a group of about 100 people enjoying a picnic at Woodside Lodge in the Hockley Valley. Were the boys watching from the bridge wishing they could splash with the others in the Nottawasaga River?

Woodside Lodge was a popular swimming spot in its heyday.

Woodside Lodge was a popular swimming spot in its heyday.

Built by Ernest Goodeve at the northeast corner of Hockley Road and Mono’s Fifth Line, the lodge was operated as a family business by Ernest and Louise, his wife, along with their daughter Waneita, until 1944, when new owners took over and the Goodeves moved into Orangeville.

During its heyday in the 1930s and ’40s, the lodge – and the extensive park that surrounded it – was the happening place in Mono. Attracting visitors from far and wide, it hosted skiers, family reunions, wedding showers and receptions, church and community groups, and those simply looking for a bit of fun. Rumour had it that four silver dollars were embedded in the dance floor of the main building.

Now privately owned, that building, with its distinctive dark-stained round logs, remains visible from Hockley Road, but most of the smaller outbuildings, which had fallen into disrepair, have been dismantled. And trees and brush are taking over the park where the group in Louise’s snapshot enjoyed their picnic and swim on that hot August day.

About the Author More by Dyanne Rivers

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