Another beautiful day where we pick a direction and drive. After exploring back roads for hours with no luck, we decided to find a place we could cool off. Our attention turned from finding the abandoned to finding a place to swim. To our surprise…we found both in one spot!! The site of the lake is what caught our attention but we were pleasantly surprised to see this abandoned restaurant once known as “Little Lake Pavilion”.
With hand painted murals and views of the lake you could tell this was once a gem in its time. Which brought us to the usual question…”what brought it to its demise?” The restaurant was huge with big windows that lead to picture perfect views. To the left of the pavilion stood an also abandoned cabin like home and attached to the pavilion on the left was an abandoned apartment with stairs that were over grown with vines and vegetation.
The integrity of the building has been badly compromised by weather and vandels….floors starting to cave in, insulation falling from the ceilings, broken windows and just general decay. It still wasn’t hard to imagine what it was like when it was a booming business being tended to with some TLC though. And so….with that as our usual main focus the research began. We found bar orders that dated back to 1971, catering agendas, old flyers, pay cheques that never got sent out and old CRA documents that would help us in our search.
The original Little Lake Pavilion dates back to the 1800’s and at the time was the only facility on the lake. People used to come by horse and buggy to stay as a getaway retreat. In those days amenities like air conditioning and fans didn’t exist. When the hall was being used they’d prop the old wooden doors open for air flow. The Pavilion was known to have had 3 significant fires that resulted in extensive rebuilding and renovation.
In 1995 John and Barbara Kremer were the owners and operated it primarily as a restaurant and catering business. The Pavilion had 22 sites for trailers with hook-ups but all were vacated by this time. The Kremers were not interested in pursuing this end of the business or the dance hall aspect either. John and Barbara did extensive renovations including a lovely outdoor patio with tables for outdoor dining.
Unfortunately the once beautiful and prosperous Little Lake Pavilion now sits empty and is deteriorating rapidly. The ghosts of it’s past tell of it’s banquets, weddings, dances and memorable functions. Little Lake is now surrounded by 150 cottages and is a summer attraction for families year after year. Our hopes are that someone with a lot of money and a dream will come and resurrect The Little Lake Pavilion.