Rezac Nature Perserve


Rezac Nature Preserve was named in recognition of the previous land owners, Bennie (Benjamin) & Pat (Patricia) Rezac.  The city/park land was officially platted as “Outlot F” along with the 2013 Lonsdale Business Park plat (25.9 acres).  An additional 16.5 acres of land was acquired in 2015, which connects to Kalina Park on the southwest side of Hidden Willow Pond.  The 9-acre pond was officially named "Hidden Willow Pond" on February 11, 2016 based on a recommendation from the Lonsdale Park Board and input from the 2015 Community Survey.  The 16 ft. deep pond was in the Havlicek-Rezac Family for over a century, and the reaming portions of the pond, were previously owned by Richard Kalina (west) and Roman Kalina (south).  Ice was once harvested by the Havlicek Family from the pond using a portable 36” sawblade mounted on a wheelbarrow style apparatus. Ice was stored in an old chicken coop building using thick layers of sawdust as insulation. The blocks of ice were stored all year round for the residents and businesses in Lonsdale.  Over the years, young people, including both Lutheran and Catholic children/teens, from the area also played hockey and ice skated on the pond during the winter months.  Over 250,000 frogs were once harvested from the pond area for use by schools (biology dissection) and medical facilities (cataract/eye disorders). The Rezac Family was one of only a few Minnesotan properties to be granted a frogging license.  The pond fish and frogs were kept alive during the winter months for many years because the Rezac Family used windmill/aeration in the pond.  Around 40 years ago, the Rezac Family planted over 3,000 trees (Scotch Pine , White Pine, Black Walnut, Ash, Silver Maple, and Oak) around the pond area. Some of the tree rows can still be seen today along the hillside.  Years ago, there was a floating bog around the western portion of the pond.  Sometimes animals would get stuck in the bog – and barn rope was used to help them out.  At one time, the Kalina property, to the west, was filled with thick willow trees.  The Willow trees were knocked down by grazing cattle and eventually farm equipment.  

Site Amenities & Features

  • Park identification sign
  • Fishing pier / boardwalk trail
  • Archery range
  • Compost site
  • Picnic area
  • Paved parking lot
  • Paved nature trail
  • Canoe access
  • Woodlands
  • Wetlands

Future Improvments

  • Connect to Kalina Park with a grass, wood-chip, or paved trail along the southern part of Hidden Willow Pond
  • Connect the dead-end paved trail at Garfield Avenue to the Historic Trondhjem Church and Pond View Drive/Lonsdale Business Park
  • Potential mountain bike trails
  • Potential disc-golf course