Have You Seen Venetian Gardens Lately? Leesburg's Gem to Shine for July 4th

Venetian Gardens – the City of Leesburg’s historic and beautiful centerpiece along the north shore of Lake Harris – is ready to celebrate the Fourth of July in grand style.

The huge holiday event sponsored by Phillips Automotive Group will be from 6 to 10 p.m. Thursday, July 4. Activities include one of Central Florida’s biggest fireworks displays with choreographed music from the famous Zambelli Fireworks, free kids rides and games, a concert from local bluesman Bobby Blackmon, a Leesburg Lightning baseball game, food vendors and free ice cream.

Venetian Gardens, Leesburg FLIn advance of all that, Leesburg has worked closely with the Leware and R.P. Hottinger construction companies to rebuild six wooden bridges connecting the 65-acre-park’s tranquil islands. The $339,000 construction project wrapped up last week – nearly three months ahead of schedule.

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“It's exciting to see the transformation that has happened in Venetian Gardens already this year, all of which are a direct result of the community, and the pride within the hearts of its residents,” said Leesburg City Commissioner Jay Hurley. “Leesburg has taken on a mindset to enhance its quality of life, and I can think of no better place to start than with Venetian Gardens, the jewel of Leesburg.”

Exterior improvements including new painting to the Leesburg Community Center were finished earlier this month. New sidewalks also were built along Dozier Circle in the heart of Venetian Gardens.

Leesburg hired local contractor Professional Waterfront Cleanup to remove overgrown and invasive aquatic plants from the shoreline surrounding Venetian Cove.

In March, Commissioner Hurley organized a public cleanup with teams of corporate and civic volunteers to trim trees, remove brush and debris from the park. Leesburg staff complemented that effort with other cleanups, and on Monday, July 1, several city departments will come together again to improve Venetian Gardens just before the holiday.

Venetian Gardens – originally created in the 1930s - is located at 201 E. Dixie Ave. along the north shore of Lake Harris. The historic park features tranquil, meandering canals surrounding six islands, Pat Thomas Stadium, the Leesburg Community Center, the Leesburg Boating Club, Venetian Cove Marina and Ski Beach.

Leesburg is a progressive city of more than 20,000 residents in northwest Lake County. The city government serves twice as many people with its electric, gas, water, wastewater and fiber-optic public utilities. Leesburg also is a central hub for commerce, attracting 50,000 people to work each weekday.