HIKE — FOREST LAWN in Buffalo — 6/15/19

A delightful balance of Nature, Art and History set the stage for a wonderful 4-mile hike throughout Buffalo’s Forest Lawn Cemetery on this cool spring day. The rolling hills, valleys and spring-fed ponds that comprise this urban burial ground were originally farmland located over 2 miles from the City of Buffalo. Following the 1849 land purchase, trees were planted to provide shade for future grave sites, thus creating a Forest on the Lawn. The water, trees and ground-cover provide a welcoming landscape for numerous deer that live here (photo).

Forest Lawn has over 3500 trees comprising at least 100 species that support over 200 types of migrating birds. We observed spectacular tulip tree blossoms at their blooming peak (photo), in addition to unusual trees like Bald Cypress, Fern-leaved Beech, and Weeping Beech.

We thoroughly enjoyed the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Blue Sky Mausoleum, beautifully situated on the rising bank of the sublime Jubilee Spring. The iconic spring-fed Mirror Lake provides a gorgeous setting for two sculptures, Three Graces Fountain (photo) and The Little Girl on the Little Island. This is a favorite destination for photographers and birders.

We ventured to Serenity Falls, an aptly named cascade waterfall within Scajaquada Creek. Extensive cleanup of the creek and a new Wetland Sanctuary with attractive arched bridges are wonderful improvements.

We enjoyed visiting famous residents including Flag Day pioneer Sara Hinson, Seneca Chief Red Jacket, Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm, North Pole explorer Frederick Cook, U.S. Weather Bureau founder Albert Myer, R&B musician Rick James, and numerous other historic Buffalo figures. It was a joy for our group (photo) to visit this urban gem and savor the natural beauty, artistry and impressive Buffalo history that Forest Lawn offers.

 

— Submitted by David and Janet Kowalski

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