Hayward, a crystal clear and pure natural spring-fed lake, is bordered by
wooded shores and sunny seasonal cottages nestled among a few year-round homes.
A blue mountain lake, Lake Hayward is:
approximately 1 1/2 miles long and 1/2 mile wide
· 174 acres at 348 feet above sea level
· 37 feet deep with an average depth of 11 feet
· a tributary of the Eight Mile River
· stocked each Spring with brown and rainbow
· hike, bike, jog or drive the
beautiful 4+ miles around the Lake
Lake Hayward, once known as Long Pond (by the Indian tribes who
inhabited its shores) and then Shaw Lake, is situated just north of Devil's
Hopyard State Park in the northeastern corner of East Haddam and is bordered by
the towns of Colchester and Salem. In 1924, Mr. Goodyear, of the Goodyear
Rubber Company, and Nathaniel Hayward were partners in a rubber mill which
operated on the lake. Mr. Hayward remained in Colchester, CT when their
partnership dissolved, and Mr. Goodyear traveled to Chicago with his Rubber
Company. After Nathaniel Hayward's death, the Hayward Fire Co., Hayward Avenue,
and Lake Hayward were named in his honor.
The eastern shore of Lake Hayward boasts
beautiful sunsets and a dirt road that is now a designated scenic route. East
side residents are not part of an association since all the residents have
either waterfront properties or a right-of-way for lake access. A state owned
boat launch is located at the northern section of the east side. Facilities
include a small paved ramp, parking for approximately 5 cars and chemical
toilets (seasonal). This ramp is used for launching of small boats. Public
access is restricted to the launch area.
The west side of the lake, which enjoys
wonderful sunrises, has four beaches all covered with clean abundant sand to
entice the summer residents. The Property Owners Association of Lake Hayward
(POALH) is a chartered body democratically governed by the property owners.
Annual dues are assessed each year at the annual association meeting and the
town assessment is used as a base. Through mandatory membership, owners enjoy
the benefits of well-kept beaches, tennis courts, volleyball, basketball and
baseball fields, areas to keep boats, a children's playground, garbage pickup,
portalets at the beaches and a pavilion which houses many activities. Most of
these fun events are made possible through the support of members of POALH, who
voluntarily devote their time and energy. Among other programs, members enjoy
potluck suppers, bingo, dances, arts and crafts and Lake Hayward Days.
Lake Hayward Days started
in 1930 when Mr. Bassett, an agent for Jas J. Smith Company (the company that
developed Lake Hayward as a seasonal community), along with Mr. Grant, Thomas
Phillips, Chick Anderson, Ev Johnson and Bob White came up with an idea, and
the first "Lake Hayward Days" became an annual tradition. Swimming races were
held early in the morning and continued for a good part of the day before the
decorated boat contest, kiddy parade, canoe tipping/racing and watermelon
fights were held. Our well-known Little Miss Lake Hayward contest, beach
carnival and kid/adult games didn't start until much later.
To add to the serenity of Lake Hayward,
many years ago gasoline motorboats were banned, and now one can hear only the
hum of little electric motors among the chirping of the Lake's peep frogs.
During the summer months many enjoy swimming, fishing, kayaking, canoeing,
paddle boating, row boating, and sailing, both in sailboats and on sailboards.
During the winter months you will see ice fisherman and ice skaters on the lake
with an occasional small fire for winter warmth.
The blend of year-round and summer
residences work together, and pride is apparent in the well-maintained
properties displayed by the vast majority of seasonal (and year-round)
residents. With today's zoning regulations, year-round residences are
grandfathered in, but any new seasonal conversion to year-round must be on a
minimum of a one-half acre lot. This regulation assures that Lake Hayward will
remain a predominately seasonal area. Most year-round residents enjoy the busy
summer season when friendships are renewed and summer activities begin. They
do, however, also admit to enjoying the end of a season - when traffic
diminishes, beaches become empty, kayaks, canoes and sailboats vanish for the
winter and daily life becomes just a touch less social.
From the beginning, it has justly been
said that Lake Hayward is a peaceful, happy and friendly community. In an
advertisement when the lake was being developed by the Jas. J. Smith Company it
"Every man or woman
should own some real estate - they should have a place to call their own, where
they can spend their summers and pass the days of their vacation to suit
themselves, where the children can be taken early and brought back late, brown
as berries, and with the robust health that only life in the open can give. No
one knows what the future may bring forth. It is such a short drive from your
home that you need not go away for an expensive vacation. Stay at home - take
day trips to the Lake. Real Estate is an imperishable asset ever increasing in
value. It is the most solid security that human integrity has devised. In fact
it is the basis of all wealth."
Lake Hayward is truly a place "where life meets vacation."
Information above was compiled by Charlyn Houston
Montie, Hayward Properties