I go to Lemon Creek Park to lose the world on what looks like a private island passed onto by a wooden bridge. The point where the creek lets out into Prince’s Bay is known as Crab Island. This is a waterfront spot for solitude, where you can pass from trees to lakes to beach without seeing a soul. A few people from the neighborhood come at night after work to walk through this peaceful almost-island. I find that it most beautiful at night, when the only lights are from the houses across the bay. In the background, you can see the steeple of the old Church of Joachim and St. Anne, part of the Mount Loretto Unique Area campus. The baptism scene of The Godfather was filmed on the Church’s steps.
Lemon Creek includes fresh water and salt water marshland that ends at the Bay, wooded areas, and wildlife that includes rare bird species like the purple martin colony. Its waterfront area provides a spawning ground for many species of fish and shellfish.
Primarily a fishing village at first, Prince’s Bay oysters were so famous in the nineteenth century that “Prince’s Bay Oysters” could often be found on menus at the finest seafood restaurants in London, Paris, and New York. Local legend has it that a British prince, the Duke of Nassau (later William III, co-reigned as William and Mary), anchored a vessel in the bay at the foot of today’s Seguine Avenue, because he believed that the oysters had aphrodisiacal properties.
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