San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

May 17th, 2010
Hays County re-opens Blanco River parks

051710parks

An architectural drawing of the soccer fields at Dudley Connaly Johnson Park. Hays County graphic.

By SEAN BATURA
News Reporter

Hays County’s parks are open to the public after months of being off-limits due to construction.

Dudley Connaly Johnson Park and Randall Wade Vetter Park, which were re-opened on May 1, lie near the Blanco River, northwest of the intersection of Post Road and Old Stagecoach Road.

Dudley Connaly Johnson Park comprises about 17 acres of land at Five Mile Dam on the Blanco River. The park includes picturesque nature views, in addition to hike and biking trails. The 18-acre Randall Wade Vetter Park, adjacent to Dudley Connaly Johnson Park, also features natural settings, and includes about a quarter mile of access to the Blanco River. The park has seven barbecue grills with shaded picnic tables and concrete, trals compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA),  and parking spots.

A third portion of the Five Mile Dam Complex, which the county and City of San Marcos are currently constructing, is 43 acres and will include walking paths, 10 soccer fields (four of which will be lighted), a pavilion, a concession stand, a playground, and parking spaces. The park may be open in the fall. Hays County, the City of San Marcos, Texas Department of Parks and Wildlife, the Lower Colorado River Authority, the McCoy Foundation and the U.S. Soccer Foundation are among the entities contributing about 4 million to the 43 acre portion of Five Mile Dam Complex.

The total investment for the 43-acre park will exceed $4 million. About $1.3 million of the funding came from a $30 million parks bond approved by Hays County voters in May 2007.

Dudley Connaly Johnson Park and Randall Wade Vetter Park are open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. during the summer. No overnight camping is allowed without special permission from the Hays County Commissioners Court.

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