Lake Park is known as the “Georgia-Florida Gateway” because it lies just north of the Florida state line on Interstate 75. It is located 14 miles south of Valdosta and was named for the more than twenty beautiful lakes in the surrounding area. Lake Park residents enjoy fishing, boating, and sailing year-round in its temperate climate, as well as golfing at the popular Francis Lake Golf Club. Shopping is also a year-round favored activity with the convenient location of the Lake Park Plaza and Farm House Plaza, which also includes an antiques mall, both located directly off I-75 on exit 5.
Lake Park was conceived in 1886 when L.A. Wisenbaker gave the right-of-way through his farm to the Georgia Southern and Florida Railroad. Wisenbaker purchased fifty acres on either side of the railroad track and would not sell or give it to the railroad thereby forcing them to accept his offer of free land to run the track through and build a depot in Lake Park. Wisenbaker and a group of leading citizens from nearby towns formed the Lake Park Improvement Company and laid plans for the proposed town, which was finally incorporated in 1890.
In the early 1900s, Lake Park was a bustling small town. A couple of innovative citizens turned the local resources of Spanish Moss and peat moss into profitable businesses. The Ocean Pond Fishing Club was formed to create a recreational facility for local businessmen and visitors. The clubhouse still stands beneath the giant mossy oaks and is a popular site for social gatherings.
For more information, visit lakeparkga.com or visit the Lake Park Historical Society and Museum at 300 Railroad Avenue.