Fourteen years after Jack and Cammy Garey announced that they would donate their ranch and home to become a public park, the City of Georgetown held a grand opening celebration for Garey Park on June 9. The 525-acre municipal park is located along the South San Gabriel River at 6450 RM 2243.
Garey Park is an oasis of green, rolling Hill Country land in our bustling metro area. I hope that every Georgetown resident will come and explore our new park along the South San Gabriel River.
As Jack Garey said at the opening celebration, “I’m excited to welcome you all to Garey Park. This is a dream come true for me and my family. I hope you and your family enjoy this land as much as we have.”
An estimated 12,000 people came for the grand opening event that featured tours of Garey House, food trucks, pony rides, a petting zoo, and fly fishing demos from the San Gabriel Fly Fishers. The Good Water Master Naturalists offered information about wildlife viewing and the planned nature trail along the river.
One of the most popular features at Garey Park is a splash pad and a large playground, including three zip lines, slides, swings, and playscape structures. This new splash pad and playscape rival the largest in the state, as Cammy Garey had hoped.
Other features at the park include a dog ranch, an equestrian arena, picnic pavilions, two fishing ponds, and more than 7 miles of hiking and equestrian trails.
Garey House is a 6,000-square-foot estate home that has been transformed into an event center with 2,000 square feet of combined indoor event space and 7,500 square feet of combined outdoor event space. Garey House is available as a rental venue for weddings, family reunions, corporate events, and meetings. Find out more about Garey House at gareyhouse.georgetown.org.
The park was donated by Jack and Camille Garey in 2004 along with $5 million for park development. In 2008 Georgetown voters approved a bond for an additional $10 million for the park’s construction. The total project cost of $15 million included $1.5 million for design and $13.5 million for construction.
At 525-acres, Garey Park is one of the largest city parks in the state and is roughly 1.5 times the size of Zilker Park in Austin. To maintain and plan programs for the City’s largest park, Garey Park is staffed with six full-time and three part-time employees, including a park foreman, recreation coordinator, recreation specialist, and group sales and servicing coordinator.
The entrance fee for Garey Park for city residents is $5 for two people and for nonresidents is $10 for two people. Each additional person is $2. The City is offering annual park passes for $100 for residents and $150 nonresidents. There is also an Equestrian Rider Annual Pass, which includes all the benefits as a Garey Park Annual Pass, plus access to the park equestrian amenities. Entry fees cover only a portion of the City’s annual operating costs for the park. No admission fees will be collected on Tuesdays from Sept. 1-May 31.
Park hours are 8 a.m.-8 p.m. from April 1-Sept. 30 and 8 a.m.-6 p.m. from Oct. 1-March 31.
See all the details about Garey Park at parks.georgetown.org/gareypark. I hope that everyone from Georgetown will visit this beautiful place where you and your family can connect with our natural surroundings. Explore and appreciate this wonderful gift from the Garey family to all of us.