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Webster Lake spans 1,442-acres in southern Massachusetts near the Connecticut border. This clear, spring-fed lake is one of the largest natural lakes in the state. Although Webster Lake is natural, it has a dam owned by Cranston Print Works, which raised the level of the lake by a few feet. The lake is actually made up of three smaller bodies of water - named North Pond, Middle Pond, and South Pond - which are all connected by narrow channels.
Webster Lake is, in fact, only one of the lake's names. Although a popular local claim as the largest natural lake in the state is likely incorrect, it undoubtedly carries the longest name. The official name is Lake Chaubunagungamaug; if you think that's a mouthful, try saying one of the other versions of the lake's name: Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg! This name, which is known for being the longest place name in the U.S., originated from the Nipmuc Indian language, and translates to something like "the fishing place at the boundaries - the neutral meeting ground." However, many people consider the translation to be "You fish on your side, I fish on my side, nobody fish in the middle." This translation was, in fact, made up by an editor of The Webster Times in the 1920s; but although it was purely fictional, it became a popular translation with many people.
In addition to its Native American heritage, the Webster Lake area is well-grounded in early American history. The famous factory builder Samuel Slater built a cotton mill there in the 1800s during the Industrial Revolution, founding the town of Webster. Slater named the town after his friend Daniel Webster, a well-known statesman.
Today, Webster Lake still entices people with its New England scenery its crystal-clear waters. Fishing is a popular sport on the lake, with fish species ranging from trout and bass to northern pike, perch, and pickerel. Anglers are attracted to the good fishing on the lake, and many tournaments are held there. If you'd rather not fish, you can simply sit back and take your boat on a ride over the lake and around some of the various islands. You may catch sight of an eagle, osprey, or heron, or hear the piercing cry of a loon echo across the lake.
Webster Lake is a prime place for having fun on the water. Canoeing, kayaking, jet skiing, water skiing - there's no shortage of things to do. The lake is enjoyed by many water sports enthusiasts; there's a family-oriented water ski club in the area, as well as a sailing association which holds sailboat races during the summer. The lake also attracts picnickers and swimmers, and has several sandy beaches that are perfect for such activities, including the 11-acre Memorial Beach.
Although the most popular time to visit Webster Lake is during the summer, the lake also holds some great attractions for winter lovers. If you don't mind the nippy New England weather, there's lots of potential for fun on the lake. Skating, of course, is always popular; so are ice fishing and ice boating. With its glorious beauty and numerous attractions, it seems that people can't stay away from Webster Lake, no matter what the season. And even if you can't pronounce its famously-long name, you're sure to enjoy your stay at this beautiful lake.
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