Texas State Park Undergoing Timely Upgrades
Cleburne State Park Assistant Superintendant Jeff Titus urged residents who have never been, or not been in a while, to pay a visit to the park located at 5800 Park Road 21 south of Fort Worth, Texas.
Titus spoke Feb. 21 to the Cleburne Lions Club, the Cleburne Times-Review reported.
Recent upgrades and ongoing projects have greatly enhanced the park experience, Titus said, making for an awesome experience of recreation and nature be it for a day trip or longer vacation.
The park encompasses 528 acres, 116 of which are occupied by Cedar Lake. A partial list of amenities includes 58 campsites, six screen shelters, a swimming beach and six miles of hiking and biking trails.
Recent upgrades include a new park store, which Titus called significantly nicer than the previous building. The new building contains a fireplace and makes a perfect locale for weddings and other events, he said. Park officials hope to contract with someone soon to operate a store out of the building. Titus said they hope to rent kayaks, canoes and paddle boats out of the store.
The park’s dining hall recently underwent renovation and is greatly improved, Titus said.
Another recent project involves renovation of the park’s 1936 Civilian Conservation Corps bridge, better known as Camp Creek Bridge. The bridge crosses Camp Creek, which sits below Cedar Lake. The renovated bridge is now used for pedestrian and bicycle traffic with a newer, adjacent bridge in place for vehicle traffic.
Park workers also recently updated the park’s water system, replacing the old CCC tank, which didn’t have enough pressure, with a new tank and lines.
With seven full-time employees, Titus said the park relies heavily on volunteers, adding that volunteers donated 3,422 hours of service last year, and encouraged anyone interested in contacting the park about volunteer opportunities.
The goals of the park, which at times conflict, involve protecting natural and historical resources while providing recreational activities. Another goal, Titus said, involves introducing residents to the outdoors, something the park sits well situated to do given the scarcity of public-access land in the North Texas area.
Park officials are also planning for the future, Titus said, taking steps to prevent or prepare for the possibility of a large-scale fire similar to those occurring in other areas of the states in recent summers.
Population growth predicted from the arrival of Texas 121, a toll road linking Fort Worth to Cleburne, presents an additional challenge.
“The last five years we’ve seen an increase (in park attendance) every year,” Titus said. “So one of the questions we’re looking at is what effect is Texas 121 going to have on the park?”
Titus said officials periodically stock the lake with catfish and bass.