Parks & Recreation

Whatever the season, there are always plenty of activities for residents and visitors alike to enjoy within the Township of Whitewater Region.

Spend some quiet time at the library reading a mystery book, enjoy a leisurely stroll through the park, relax in your boat while fishing on a tranquil lake, watch your children frolic in the water at the beach or lace up your skates and compete against other hockey teams at a local arena.

With ball fields, enclosed arenas, outdoor rinks, municipal parks, boat launches, beaches, libraries and a museum, the Township provides a variety of recreational and cultural activities for everyone - your choices are countless!

 

BOAT LAUNCHES

Whether you are a recreational boater or an avid fisherman, access to Muskrat Lake, Mud Lake and the Ottawa River can be attained at several boat launches located within the Township. The boat launches noted below are municipally maintained with limited parking available for vehicles and boat trailers.

BOAT LAUNCH LOCATION DIRECT ACCESS TO
Highway 17 (bottom of Meath Hill) Muskrat River
(passage to Mud Lake & Muskrat Lake)
Bonnechere Street (Cobden) Muskrat Lake
Acres Road Ottawa River
Synton Street (Westmeath) Ottawa River
Lacroix Bay Road (Lapasse) Ottawa River

 

 

 

The Veteran’s Memorial Park is located along Highway 17 within the village of Cobden. The park is easily recognized by the enormous Canadian flag that measures fifteen feet by thirty feet that is flying atop the one hundred-foot flag pole that was erected courtesy of the Royal Canadian Legion.
On November 15, 1904, the village of Cobden purchased land from Thomas & Elizabeth Robinson for the sum of eight hundred dollars. Nine of these lots became the Village of Cobden Municipal Park that was later renamed on June 3, 2000 to the Veteran’s Memorial Park. A cenotaph was erected in the park to honour the memory of the brave men and women from Cobden & District who volunteered their services to Canada in its time of need. Mention is made on the cenotaph of the Boer War, both World Wars, the Korean War, the Gulf War and Canada’s peacekeeping operations.

In 1960 a plaque dedicated to Champlain’s journey of 1613 was erected in the park by the Archaeological and Historic Sites Board which was later incorporated into the Ontario Heritage Foundation. As reported on the plaque, it was during 1613 that Samuel de Chaplain travelled up the Ottawa River seeking the northern sea (Hudson Bay) which his companion Nicolas de Vignau claimed to have seen. The party headed inland above Lac des Chats and then followed a series of small lakes towards Cobden. It was here on June 7th that they visited with Algonquin chief Nibachis. Later, the party met with Algonquin elder Tessouat at Allumette Lake who convinced Champlain that the northern sea did not exist. Champlain then proceeded to return down river.

It is during this journey that Champlain is believed to have lost his astrolabe, a navigational instrument that was used to measure latitude. In 1867, a 14-year-old farm youth named Edward Lee found the astrolabe while clearing trees by Green Lake in the former Township of Ross. It is reported that Lee was offered ten dollars for the astrolabe by Captain Cowley who operated a steamboat on Muskrat Lake. The youth never saw the money and Captain Cowley sold the astrolabe to his employer R.W. Cassels, President of the Ottawa Forwarding Company. Later, the astrolabe was sold to a New York collector and then passed on to the New York Historical Society. It was in June 1989 that it was acquired by the Department of Communications for the Canadian Museum of Civilization.

The Veteran’s Memorial Park is also the site of one of several visitor centres found within the Ottawa Valley. The centre is staffed by volunteers of the Cobden & District Senior Citizens group and it is open on Fridays and Saturdays from 10:00a.m. to 7:00p.m. beginning in late May until the end of June each year. From July 1st until the Labour Day weekend, it is open daily from 10:00a.m. to 7:00p.m. The visitor centre is a popular stop for travellers and its guest register shows visitors from all over the world including Russia, China, Hong Kong and Sweden to name a few places. Records show that 1800 to 2000 visitors have visited the centre annually. Please contact the visitor centre at (613) 646-7188 during its hours of operation when planning your next trip to the Township of Whitewater Region and the Ottawa Valley.

Commencing each year on the May long weekend and continuing until the end of the Thanksgiving long weekend, the park provides travellers with overnight camping sites that offer water and electricity hook-ups and showers. The current camping fee is $15.00 per night on a first-come basis (no advance booking) and there is a $15.00 fee for use of the dumping station.

Located on the edge of Muskrat Lake, the park also has a lovely beach area as a result of the never-ending work by The Cobden Civitans Club. This Club, which has supported numerous community projects since its formation in 1974, initiated a project in 1988 to improve and rebuild the beach area at the park and waterfront. The project took three years to complete but the outcome is visible today as one takes a leisurely stroll along the beach.


The Lookout Park or Scenic Lookout is located at 1358 Lookout Road between Westmeath and Beachburg in the Township of Whitewater Region. From atop the hill where the octagon-shaped Lookout building is situated, you can gaze out over the vast landscape of Renfrew County and the Pontiac County. From this vantage point you can glance in the direction of Pembroke, Westmeath, Davidson, LaPasse, Beachburg and Perretton - all areas are clearly marked on the rafters of the Lookout building. Donated to the former Township of Westmeath by Hilda Wright and family in memory of her husband John C. Wright, the Park attracts numerous visitors especially during the fall months when the colours are magnificent to behold.

The late John C. Wright, who was Reeve of the former Township of Westmeath from 1953 to 1958, envisioned a lookout at this location but it was not until after his death that the park was built by family members. In recent years, a plaque in honour of the donation received from the Wright family has been erected at the site. So, the next time that you are driving in Whitewater Region, plan to visit the Lookout Park and admire the view! Don’t forget to bring your camera!