The Cleveland Cascade was a stunning Italian-inspired water feature on the shores of Lake Merritt, built in 1923. Its water cascaded 100 feet down a steep hill– pouring through a sequence of ornate bowls– from the Cleveland Heights hill above almost into Lake Merritt below. Two flights of steps flanked the Cascade and are heavily used today by walkers, runners, and extreme exercisers.
In 2004, neighbors came together to reclaim the cascade– to revitalize it as a park, to restore the water feature to its original beauty and vitality; and to create some long-lived magic in their city.
On April 8th 2006, The Organic City film crew interviewed the two local residents behind the excavation and restoration of the Cleveland Cascade, Barbara Newcombe and Jim Ratliff. In this episode, the second in a series of three, Barbara and Jim tell us about the rediscovery and restoration of the Cascade by the community.