Lakeside Park – Missouri

Lakeside Park – Missouri
Between Joplin & Carthage on private property.

Lakeside park was first envisioned by Alfred Harrison, the president of Southwest Missouri Electric Railway. The Trolley owners of the time were attempting to find new income by providing Free Amusement Parks for anyone riding the Trolley system. With the Southwest Missouri Electric Railway already having access to Center Creek, they started building Lakeside Park in 1895.

Lakeside Park was to be free to the public with only access from the Trolley system, for a round trip from Joplin to Lakeside cost only 25 cents. The Park attracted large crowds from Joplin, Webb City, and Carthage. The park offered many attractions over its 40 years including baseball games, a dance pavilion with popular orchestras, roller rink, theater, bbq stand, roller coaster, swinging bridge, boating and swimming and an Inn near the trolley bridge.

In 1914, James Scott, an African American ragtime musician wrote the song “Take Me Out to Lakeside”, specifically for the park. The words were written by Ida Miller. James Scott spent many years in Carthage, MO and entertained many crowds at Lakeside Park.

With the invention of the automobile brought roads to Lakeside Park. However, within ten years of building Route 66, the park closed down most of its attractions. Then with Southwest Missouri Electric Railway closing down around 1940 the rest of the park was closed for good.

The Song

Take Me Out to Lakeside (1914)

First verse:
Take me to “Lake-Side” that beautiful place, Where your life seems complete, Orchestras playing and everyone swaying gives you such a treat, Dancing and glancing with smiles so entrancing is all you can see The Waltz hesitation is all the sensation, Oh come and dance with me.

Refrain:
Take me out to Lakeside Sunday afternoon, Where the band is playing, Flowers all in bloom, Boys and girls together happy as a lark,
Take me out to “Lake-Side” Beautiful Lake-side Park, park.

Second verse:
When twilight draws near and the whole world seems drear, And you’ve no place to go, You may sit guessing but no thought expressing The pleasures you love so, You think of your only while you feel so lonely it all Seems a dream So while you are pining there comes a reminding, A glorious thought it seems.

Refrain:
Take me out to Lakeside Sunday afternoon,
Where the band is playing, Flowers all in bloom, Boys and girls together happy as a lark,
Take me out to “Lake-Side” Beautiful Lake-side Park, park.





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