Zilker Park

History

Andrew JacksonZilker

Zilker Park is known as the crown jewel of the Austin parks system.  It is named for Andrew  Jackson Zilker.  Mr. Zilker came to Austin in 1876 to become a business man and a banker.  He operated one of Austin’s first  ice factories and was elected an Alderman.  He also ranched a 40 acre spread with good water southwest of town. 

In three separate gifts in 1918, 1923, and 1931, Mr. Zilker gave his ranch, which included what is now known as Barton Springs,  to the city in a way that benefitted the community and the schools.  Zilker made a final gift to the city in 1934, the site of what is now the Girl Scout Clubhouse.  That same year the park was officially named Zilker Park.

Park Features

  • The Zilker Holiday Tree stands 155 feet tall and is composed of 39 streamers, each holding 81 multicolored, 25-watt bulbs, totaling 3,309 lights. The Zilker Tree lighting ceremony is held annually on the first Sunday in Dec. at 6 p.m.
  • The annual Zilker Park Kite Festival is held the first Sunday in March each year.
  • Enjoy a ride on the Zilker Zephyr miniature train or paddling a canoe on Town Lake. Play on the large multi-age playscape, hike and bike trails and large full-service picnic areas, six of which are reservable.
  • Barton Springs Pool is a natural spring-fed pool with a year-round average temperature of 68 degrees.
  • The sports enthusiast will enjoy the sand volleyball courts, a nine-hole disc golf course and two multi-use fields.
  • Zilker Botanical Gardens includes the Taniguchi Oriental Garden and the Austin Area Garden Center.
  • Austin Nature and Science Center offers a wide variety of programs for children and adults.
  • Zilker Hillside Theatre hosts concerts ranging from jazz to country. Additionally, the theatre is the site of the Zilker Summer Musical and Shakespeare in the Park. Bring a blanket to site on the hillside and enjoy these events.
  • Umlauf Sculpture Garden and Museum is on the south end of the park and is the home of a collection of works by sculptor Charles Umlauf.
  • The park also hosts the Austin Sunshine Camp owned and operated by the Young Men's Business League of Austin.

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Temple Belton listings last updated Jan 24, 2017 8:27:am.
Central Texas listings last updated May 24, 2019 3:19:pm.