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Lakeside Park by Rush

Album: Caress Of SteelReleased: 1976
  • The "Lakeside Park" is St. Catharine's, on Lake Ontario in Canada. Rush drummer and lyricist Neil Peart lived very near Lakeside Park and spent summers as a child working and playing there. This song details his memories, his time spent there, and of how it used to be before they changed it.
  • The lyrics mention the "24th of May" - This is Victoria Day, commemorating Queen Victoria's birthday. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Mike - Mountlake Terrace, Washington
  • Neil Peart (from Traveling Music): "Another important setting in my childhood and early teens was Lakeside Park, in Port Dalhousie. When I was 14 and 15, I worked summers at Lakeside Park as a barker ('Catch a bubble, prize every time,' all day and night), and there was music: some of the kids brought transistor radios to work, and the music of that summer of 1966 played up and down the midway. At night, when the midway closed, we gathered around a fire on the beach, singing. Lakeside Park resonated in my life in so many deep ways, especially those fundamental exposures to music that would be forever important. It's all gone now. All that's left, apart from memories, is the old merry-go-round." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Rick - Omaha, NE
  • Rush biographer Martin Popoff feels that this is the most enduring song on Caress Of Steel.
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Comments: 25

Greetings RUSH fans!! I have been wanting to visit Lakeside Park for many years now and was planning on going this May 24th! Much to my disappointment Victoria Day is NOT Celebrated on the 24th of May. In fact, since 1952 (the year Neal Peart was born) it has been officially celebrated on the Monday before May 25th by order-in-council and statutory amendment. (May 19th this year 2014) This confuses me because all the information I have found says that Lakeside Park was about the time that Peart spent there. If that is true then why do the lyrics indicate that they gathered on the 24th of May?? I know, I am a complete dork, but I was so looking forward to FINALLY going to Lakeside Park on the 24th of May, only to find this out. ANY help or insight would be appreciated. I am also going to try and ask Neal this on Twitter if possible. ROCK ON!!Rush - Beverly Hills, Ca
i dont care what geddy are any one else sais lakeside park in my eyes is the best song they ever wrote!i think its the best song in the world period!let me just say i would go any where in the world to see rush if they played only old stuff up to permenent waves.a fan for life P,S I HAVE A PICTURE OF THEM HANGING OVER MY FIRE PLACE IN MY HOLM.IS THERE ANY MORE FANS OF RUSH LIKE ME LEFT OUT THERE?Vincent - Barry Lakes, Nj
Not a bad song...and a bit different for the band at the time. It's whimsical and melodic. Nice break from the norm of Rush at that time. Lyrically it's wistful and nostalgic. Works.John - Asheville, Nc
i have the starman tattoo on my right shoulder..... it's beautiful....www.myspace.com/paigea11
the oly thing missing are the signatures of the best 3 man band that actually have survived all the bs of the past and remain artists... and are legends...(just ask my kids)
Paige - Haouson, Tx
well that sucks, i was told that it was based on the Lakeside park in my town of kingsville, down near windsor, and i was thinking that that was soo coool, oohh well, they're still the best canadian band ever!!!!Jon - Kingsville/windsor, Canada
Lakeside Park is actually in a district of St. Catherines named Port Dalhousie. My buddy Brit and I used to hang and fish there a while growing up. Some movers and shakers have now developed over the land and forestry and built an mini empire of clubs and pubs for the sailors and night-hawks. The best is the midway; they still have it every year.Duane Seamans - Toronto, Canada
I have to agree with Alan from NJ, This is a very underrated song, yet I don't ever hear it played on the raido and I don't think the band has played it live for years.Chuck - Houston, Tx
Ive never been to Canada, but would love to visit. Lakeside Park is one of my favs and like to visit there just cause of the songGil - Donna, Tx
Where exactly is Lakeside Park? I would like to visit it on a trip to Toronto. Thanks, Dave.David Baird - Westerville, Oh
Great song,great band.Should be in Hall Of Fame in Cleveland.
Brian M. San Diego,Ca.
Brian - San Diego, Ca
We just got back from touring Lakeside Park a couple weeks ago, and the Merry-go-round is still wheezing the same old melody! And yes, it's still just 5 cents a ride. It was quite a site to behold a bunch of Rush fans going round and round. I can't wait to do it again! Come on Rushcon VII!
~sundog, Windsor, Ontario
Sundog - Windsor
I saw Rush live at the CNE Grandstand ... A Fairwell To Kings Tour ...They played it live ... Awesome !!!!!!

Barry 61
Barry - Gagetown Nb Canada
Amazing song. i was listening to it last night, having no idea it was actually about the park in port dalhousie, thinking "man...willows...carousel...i was there". i knew peart was from the area. great times at lakeside park...might even go down there on the 24th of may (4 days!!)Drew - Niagara Falls, Canada
There is bar inside the park that plays this song before closing every night. On a different note. Check out the version of this song in the Rush tribute cd Subdivisions.Sebastian - Miami, Fl
i live right by lakeside parkNn - Nbn, Greenland
Geddy Lee (1993 Raw magazine): "A lot of the early stuff I'm really proud of," he says. "Some of it sounds really goofy, but some of it stands up better than I gave it credit for. As weird as my voice sounds when I listen back, I certainly dig some of the arrangements. I can't go back beyond 2112 really, because that starts to get a bit hairy for me, and if I hear "Lakeside Park" on the radio I cringe. What a lousy song! Still, I don't regret anything that I've done!"Daryl - Saskatoon
This song is irroniclaly on my birthday too.Taylor - Pittsburgh, Pa
Rush perform Lakeside Park live on the "All The World's A Stage" albumKeewa - Fairbanks, Al
Geddy Lee actually said Lakeside Park is a terrible song? Is he NUTS? My second favorite Rush song behind Bastille Day.Shawn - Philadelphia/pittsburgh, Pa
The best part is... I've actually been there! Many times, actually. In fact, I live in the same city.Rick - St. Catharines, Canada
It's too bad Geddy made that comment about the song. Simple as it is, it is a wonderful song that I have enjoyed for many years. I believe I have attended 25 or more Rush concerts and I don't think I have ever heard them play it live. The first Rush show I ever saw was during the 2112 tour at a small Music Hall venue. The ticket cost $4.95Alan - Fair Lawn, Nj
In an interview sometime near 1999 I heard Getty refer to some of the 'terrible' songs Rush had recorded like 'Lakeside Park'. I thought this was a drag 'cause I really like it.Kenif - Reno, Nv
If you didn't know when Neil was in his teens he used to ride a motorcycle and he got into a reck by the pier at Lakeside Park. He didn't ride for many years later. He started riding a while before his ghost rider trip. It took many years for Neil to get over the fear of riding a motorcycle.Taylor - Riceville, Tn
i love this song, its great really gets you nostalgic for a park you've never even been too!Charlie - Thomaston, Ct
I always thought it was because it was my birthday.Richard - Belle Vernon, Pa
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