The Ferry at the Old Lake City Harbor
Original Harbor with Entry to the North

Our History

In the late 1800’s the harbor and point were much different than today.  The Point was occupied by a lumber yard, elevator, hotel, and a few homes, while the harbor was little more than a slew and a city dump.  Much of what is now part of the Marina and Point was privately owned and acquisition by the City began in 1913 and continued up through the acquisition of the former Lake City Clinic property in 2003.


The first major harbor project was approved in 1933 when the City applied to the federal government for a public works project grant to build docks and widen the entrance to the harbor which was located on the north side of the harbor where the bath house now stands. 


The new harbor was dedicated on August 8, 1934 when President Franklin D. Roosevelt came to Lake City.  In his speech he is quoted as saying, “And I am glad also that I have been able to bring before this community some assistance, as is demonstrated in the dock and harbor which I know is going to be a service to the people of Lake City and this vicinity.  I am very, very happy to take part in this dedication.”


Planning for the next harbor improvement began in 1939, but had to be postponed until 1945 because of World War II.  In 1947, Congress granted money to the Army Corps of Engineers to begin work on the harbor.  This project more than doubled the size of the harbor and also filled in the old entrance with dredgings taken from opening up the present entrance to the Marina. 

A large launching ramp was also installed on the west side of the harbor.  During the 1950’s and 60’s the Lake City Marina became a popular recreation area for many people from the Rochester and Austin area in the summer and winter transformed the harbor into a huge public skating rink and a hockey rink.  The harbormaster at the time chaperoned the skating rink in the winter.


The harbor project that most significantly changed the harbor and paved the way for what the Marina is today was the expansion and renovation project of 1965-67.  The Marina Board applied to the Federal Government for a half million dollar loan for the project which was granted.  The expansion started in 1966, it included dredging and expanding the area of the harbor.  The dredgings were used to raise the Point six feet and water and sewer lines were installed on the point.  When the project was completed in 1967 the docks were all new, a two story administration building and new bath house were in place.


The most visible change to the Lake City Marina came in 1984 when work began on a 900 foot breakwater forming the South Harbor.  This addition created room for nearly 300 additional boat slips.


Today Lake City’s 635 slip Marina continues improvements of our facility with the addition of a new 2.6 million dollar Marina building designed for greater guest satisfaction.