What's In a Name
The names of Lakewood's park and community facilities commemorate well-known figures from the history of Latin America and the men and women whose vision led to the founding of Lakewood.
Biscailuz Park: Eugene Biscailuz was the sheriff of Los Angeles County when Lakewood incorporated in 1954. He was instrumental in creating the contract plan for sheriff's law enforcement in Lakewood. Biscailuz Park was dedicated in 1959.
Bloomfield Park: Originally, this was a county park facility, annexed with the surrounding neighborhoods in 1962.
Bolivar Park: Simon Bolivar was a soldier-statesman to whom six Latin-American countries owe their freedom. Bolivar Park was dedicated in 1957. Several park facilities are named after Latin American political leaders. This was due to the Pan American Festival Association, which was formed in 1948 to celebrate the friendship between the United States and the peoples of Mexico and Central and South America.
Burns Community Center: William Burns was one of Lakewood's first city council members. The Burns Community Center was dedicated in 1976.
Cherry Cove Park: This park was provided by the developers of the Cherry Cove housing tract, which surrounds the park.
Iacoboni Library: Angelo Iacoboni was one of the leaders of the movement to incorporate Lakewood. He became Lakewood's first mayor in 1954.
José del Valle: José del Valle was the liberator of Honduras. His park was dedicated in 1957. What about the airplane? It is a Douglas night fighter from the Korean War era.
José San Martin: José San Martin was a soldier, statesman, and national hero of Argentina and Chile. San Martin Park was dedicated in 1957.
Mayfair Park: Mayfair Park was dedicated in 1951 as a Los Angeles County facility. Mayfair Park takes its name from the surrounding housing tract, which was then known as the Mayfair District.
Pat McCormick Pool at Bolivar Park: The pool at Bolivar Park is named after Pat McCormick, who was an Olympic gold medallist in diving in 1952 and in 1956. She was a resident of Lakewood.
Mae Boyar: Mae Boyar was the wife of Louis Boyar, one of the original developers of Lakewood (along with Mark Taper and Ben Weingart). Boyar Park was dedicated in 1959.
Palms Park: Palms Park was dedicated in 1978 and includes a community center, baseball diamonds, and picnic facilities. The park is adjacent to Palms Elementary School.
George Nye, Jr. Library: George Nye, Jr. was another original city council member.
S. Mark Taper Foundation Vista Lodge at Monte Verde Park: The city's newest park building is part of the city's popular day camp park. Named in honor of S. Mark Taper, the Vista Lodge recognizes the third major developer of Lakewood.
John Sanford Todd Community Center at Mayfair Park: Mr. Todd is the "Father of the Lakewood Plan" which permitted Lakewood and scores of other communities throughout the nation to incorporate. Mr. Todd has been Lakewood's City Attorney since 1954.
Rynerson Park: This 55-acre park and equestrian center was dedicated in 1990, and was named after Jacqueline Rynerson. Mrs. Rynerson is a former mayor who was instrumental in obtaining the agreement with SCE for the park property and buying the Lakewood Equestrian Center.
Weingart Senior Center: Ben Weingart was one of the original developers of Lakewood. The Weingart Foundation assisted the city in building the Burns Community Center, the Weingart Senior Center, Palms Park Community Center, and the Centre at Sycamore Plaza, among other gifts to the Lakewood community. In his honor, several facilities bear his name.
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