Directly across the parking lot from Orchard Beach is a protected body of water known as The Lagoon. While not a true lagoon, these waters became nearly landlocked with the creation of Orchard Beach in the 1930's. Once known as LeRoy's Bay, the lagoon served as the site for the 1964 Olympic Rowing Trials.
Along the southwestern shore is a neglected judging stand that resembles a relic from the 1964 Worlds Fair (Barbie Townhouse meets Soviet housing project). For years, I had thought this was one of those fake buildings that firemen use for training. A chain-link fence along with some rare common sense stopped me from entering.
The lagoon itself is attractive, and it is very easy to forget that you are in the Bronx. The surrounding land is all part of the massive Pelham Bay Park, maintained by the City of New York. It is still common to see rowing teams from Fordham, Sarah Lawrence, and Iona gliding across the water, with the only audience now being some egrets and herons.
Andrew Cusack: Rowing In Pelham Bay Park (photos from tower)
Iolani: 1964 Olympic Rowing Trials
Soundbounder: Shore Park In Pelham Manor
Yale Bulldogs: Connell Cup