ABOUT WINCHENDON SPRINGS LAKE ASSOCIATION
Lake Monomonac is unique because it has waters in both Massachusetts and New Hampshire.
The Winchendon Springs Lake Association (WSLA) was founded in 1982 to ensure the quality of our Winchendon lake community. This includes issues involving water quality, weed control, water safety, road quality and safety, zoning issues, social events and more. Some examples of the work the association has driven include arranging to have the roads paved, engaging with the town for better signage, increased police patrols and treatment for invasive milfoil.
WSLA works cooperatively with the Monomonac Lake Property Owners’ Association (MLPOA) which draws members from both New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Their priorities are focused on issues that impact the full lake (such as water purity) while also focusing on New Hampshire specific needs.
The organization is supported by membership dues, currently $50 per year for each property owner on the Winchendon side of the lake. We also hold fundraising events and raffles throughout the year.
WSLA By-Laws - (Pdf)
Please explore this website to learn more about our organization.
Check out From Cotton to Cottages written by Wilma Allen.
ABOUT LAKE MONOMONAC
Lake Monomonac was man- made from a small pond in New Hampshire that flows into the Monomonac River in Massachusetts (and joins the Millers' River). It grew gradually, beginning in the 1790's with the building of dams that increased in number to 13 by the 1850's to provide power for sawmills, shingle manufacturers, Textile mills, toy manufacturers, and more.
Lake Monomonac today totals 711 acres with 286 in Winchendon, Massachusetts, and 425 in Rindge, New Hampshire. The mills are mainly gone. There are 342 property owners and approximately 200 structures on the Massachusetts side of the lake. Roughly ½ of those structures are year round homes.
Deepest recorded depth -24 feet - average 10 feet Fairly clear - essentially a private lake.
There are two dams at the southeast end of the lake - one large earthen dam, and a smaller poured cement dam downstream about 200 feet.
In addition, there is a large spillway on the northwest end of the lake that constructed with removable splashboards.
The town of Winchendon owns the dams and spillway. The water levels are set by the Army Corps of Engineers.
Fishing, boating, swimming, sailing all are enjoyed on Lake Monomonac. Herons, and various duck life abound. There are no 'public beaches' at present.
A convenience store with boat launch and gas, North of the Border, is located on Route 202, on the northeast end of the lake in New Hampshire that has a public ramp for boat access by non-residents. There is a fee to launch boats.
Water source is from nearly 90 various streams, springs. Since Lake Monomonac is in both New Hampshire and Massachusetts, The Winchendon Springs Lake Association works closely with the Rindge based lake association, Monomonac Lake Property Owners' Association (MLPOA) on regular water testing. Learn more about water quality here.
Our activities are done jointly with MLPOA. Learn more about lake's health here.
THE SANTA MARIA
Even though this icon is on the Rindge side, it's hard to ignore as one of the most interesting structures on the lake.
Lake Monomonac is the largest of the "great ponds" containing 710 acres and is one of the few interstate lakes in MA, sharing approximately 1/2 of its water line with Rindge NH. A unique feature of the lake is the imposing bow of the ship, the "Santa Maria" facing northward up the main body of the lake. Built in 1942 of rock and concrete, it is a bit of whimsy by a priest, Father Wilfred A. Tisdale, as a vacation retreat and to display and enjoy his collection of rare works of art of genuine museum quality. Click here for to see how one of these works of art saved Winchendon's American Legion decades later.
The "Santa Maria" was a feature article In "Yankee Magazine" in July 1967. Click here to view the scanned article from Yankee Magazine. Since that time it has been privately owned by several families, once by the well known singer Kenny Rogers, who found the unique features attracted too many people and interfered with his privacy.