Lakefront Reservation--East 72nd St.

Tips for Birding

These adjacent units of the Lakefront Reservation provide lake access as well as some limited habitat for migrant passerines. The upper portion of Gordon Park, which houses a park ranger and watercraft licensing station, is an attractive place for nesting and wintering Mockingbirds. From the Memorial Shoreway, which has been joined by Interstate 90 east of downtown, exit at Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and proceed north. The East 72nd Street and lower Gordon portions can be reached by turning west on the marginal road which parallels I-90. East 72 provides a good view of the lake including an intake channel for the nearby CEI plant that offers some sheltered water for waterfowl. Lower Gordon Park contains a marina, boat ramps, and a sheltered lagoon. Upper Gordon Park is reached by continuing north on MLK Blvd until it turns right, becoming Lake Shore Blvd. Proceed east as the road curves and goes up a hill. Take the first left at the top of the hill and bear left into the park headquarters. Upper Gordon overlooks a former Army Corps of Engineers diked landfill, the Cleveland Lakefront Nature Preserve. Check the landfill walls for Snowy Owl in winter and watch for Harriers, Red-tailed and Rough-legged Hawks. Check the pines near the headquarters building for migrant Pine Warbler, and walk the fence along the landfill for sparrows and thrushes.

Also, see BirdWatchingDaily website

About Lakefront Reservation

See all hotspots at Lakefront Reservation

In 2013, Cleveland Metroparks assumed management of certain Lakefront State properties which include Edgewater Park, Scranton Peninsula, East 55th Street Marina, Gordon Park, Euclid Beach Park, Villa Angela, and Wildwood Park. While the City of Cleveland will continue to own the properties, Cleveland Metroparks holds a 99-year lease to manage and enhance the parks, with a commitment to outstanding stewardship. Euclid Beach Park, Villa Angela Park, and Wildwood Park join Euclid Creek Reservation, while Edgewater Park, East 55th Street Marina, and Gordon Park comprise Cleveland Metroparks' newest reservation, Lakefront Reservation.

From beaches to boat ramps and fitness trails to fishing piers, Lakefront Reservation is a true gem in the “Emerald Necklace” anchoring Cleveland Metroparks' presence on the shores of Lake Erie. Located in Cleveland, Lakefront Reservation is made up of three very distinct properties, Edgewater Park, Gordon Park, and East 55th Street Marina.

Edgewater Park with its 6,000 feet of shoreline features two beaches, a playground, reservable pavilions, and one of the best views of downtown Cleveland. A nearby fishing pier provides anglers access to Lake Erie while the boat ramps offer one of the few public boating access points on the west side of the city. Edgewater Beach, a 900-foot swimming beach is open with lifeguards daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. through mid-August.

Gordon Park was donated to the City of Cleveland by William J. Gordon in 1893 who stipulated the park always be open to the public and remain Gordon Park. Part of an Audubon Important Birding Area, Gordon Park provides the best viewing for a large number of diverse and rare gulls and ducks. The 1.3 miles of armored coastline and onshore fishing platforms provide excellent fishing opportunities and is known for winter catches of steelhead and salmon.

Anglers and boaters can take advantage of the 1,200-foot fishing platform, eight transient docks, and concession facility at the East 55th Street Marina.

The 17-mile Cleveland Lakefront Bike Trail traces the Lake Erie shoreline providing access to Edgewater Park, the East 55th Street Marina, Gordon Park, Euclid Beach Park, Villa Angela Park, and Wildwood Park.


  • Restrooms on site

  • Wheelchair accessible trail

  • Entrance fee

  • Roadside viewing

Content from Dick Hoffman

East 72nd Street
Lakefront Reservation