wasaga beach

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Wasaga Beach

Wasaga Beach is situated along the southern tip of Georgian Bay. In the summer months the town's population balloons as sun bathers descend on the 14 kms of sandy beach that make up Wasaga Beach Provincial Park. It is estimated that around 2 million people visit Wasaga Beach every summer. The Blue Flag designated beach is located on Nottawasaga Bay and the Nottawasaga River.

When settlers arrived the area was home to the Algonquin First Nations people. The word Nottawa means Iroquois and Saga means mouth of the river.

During the War of 1812 American war ships reached the mouth of the Nottawasaga River and sunk the The Nancy, a British fur-trading schooner that had been converted into a war ship. Remains of The Nancy were retrieved from the Nottawasaga River and displayed in a museum at the Nancy Island Historic Site.

Settlers began arriving around 1820 and found the sandy soil incompatible with farming. The area was heavily forested and lumbering became an important industry, as trees could be floated in the river to lumber mills located along the river banks and across the bay in Collingwood, Ontario.

By the 1920's the automobile made the trip to Wasaga Beach from many urban centres possible and cottages began to spring up along the waterfront. Families began arriving during the summer months to enjoy the safe sandy beach. A midway and amusement park were added along the beachfront and Wasaga Beach became a premiere beach destination in Southern Ontario. In 1972 part of Main Street was closed off and turned into a pedestrian mall. In 2007 a fire would destroy many of the old buildings that made up the Main Street Mall.

Wasaga Beach Provincial Park is a day use only park and provides visitors with eight beach sites, each with it's own parking. There is also a beach set aside for visitors with dogs. The park also offers 30 kms of trails within 6.8 hectares of unique dune area.

 

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Wasaga Beach, Ontario

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The History of Simcoe County


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