Melrose “The City of Water”

canoes Location, Location, Location

Melrose is a small city located midway between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. This unique area in North Central Florida is at a junction of Alachua, Bradford, Clay, and Putnam Counties. It is approximately 19 miles East of Gainesville. This small community has about 3500 residents. It is known for its beautiful lakes and has been attracting visitors and residents since around the 1870s.

Summer Activities

As summer comes around, we all like to relax and enjoy family and friends on a body of water. There are several natural water resources in Melrose and the surrounding area. People seek refreshing water sources to cool off from the temperatures that hover over 90-100 degrees here in Florida during the summer months. We must be aware of the dangers that are present with waterways.

Danger, Danger

Whether it be people that are irresponsible or due to our unpredictable nature, we should be aware of our surroundings and possible threats. Water sports such as boating, water skiing, and jet skiing as well as some of our favorite past-time of fishing and swimming do have their risks.

Accidents on Waterways

Melrose io as a city of water. With access to Santa Fe Lake and Santa Fe River, the town of Melrose attracts many visitors and residents to its beautiful lakes, canals, and multiple boat ramps. There are bound to be accidents by boat, jet skis, kayaking, canoeing, and drowning. Accidents pose a real danger to the people that visit and live in this small community.


Boat owners have the responsibility to have safety equipment and safe vehicles.  Most importantly, they must conduct themselves with responsible actions and decisions for passengers as well as others who are out or in the water. Boats do not have brakes, and boat owners are not required to have a driver’s license, unlike car owners. Drinking while boating is prohibited by law. If you are a boat driver, be responsible, and respect other people.

Melrose Bay Park

Melrose Bay Park is owned by the Melrose Business and Community Association. Many people have come to realize that this is the only natural public swimming area in Alachua County. Many families with children of all ages visit this Park all year long, especially during the summer months.


Activities include swimming, picnicking, fishing, and boating,  Families, plan birthday parties, and other special events throughout the year here. Holidays bring multitudes of people into the area beginning with numerous private lake New Year’s celebrations to the end of the year Melrose Annual Christmas Parade.

“Swim at Your Own Risk”

The Park is supported and managed by volunteers. They have a “swim at your own risk” policy. Both boaters and swimmers share the “Bay” as Melrose Bay is affectionately named. On a typical summer day, there could be more than 90 people enjoying this swimming hole. Drinking is prohibited by the rules established by the Melrose Business and Community Association and enforced by the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office. The Park closes at 6 p.m.

Residents and Visitors

In conclusion, Melrose is a beautiful and charming place for family get-togethers, and the city offers a little bit of everything to do on a leisurely weekend or holiday. Melrose Bay Art Gallery is a lovely place to visit. The local Farmer’s Market is a great place to pick up fresh fruits and vegetables. An assortment of cuisine is available to choose from in the restaurants in Melrose. So have a safe and fun time with your ventures to this city of water.

Enjoy the Fun & Sun

Usually, a day out on the water can be very enjoyable. Memories will be of a fun, relaxed, and uneventful day. Never the less, keep in mind that traumatic injury can happen in waterways. Occasionally, speeding and reckless boaters quickly get out of hand during a busy holiday weekend. If an irresponsible navigator has injured you or a loved one, call Massey and Duffy for a free consultation. You have the right to recoup damages due to a personal injury caused by reckless behavior.



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