Austin Parks and Rec Dept. http://kut.org en Austin Lifeguard Shortage Leaves Many City Pools Closed http://kut.org/post/austin-lifeguard-shortage-leaves-many-city-pools-closed <p><strong style="line-height: 1.5;">Update</strong><span style="line-height: 1.5;">:&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The City of Austin opened three more pools over the weekend. 24 city pools are now open, while 10 remain closed.</span></p><p>All pools were originally scheduled to open Friday, June 6.&nbsp; The city is still <a href="lifeguardaustin.com">hiring and training lifeguards</a> to staff the remainder of the pools.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;"><strong>Original&nbsp;story</strong> (June 12): Outside </span>Shipe<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Pool Wednesday afternoon, two-year-old Redding </span>McArdle<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> wore two blue, inflatable arm&nbsp;</span>floats<span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;– one on each arm.</span></p><p>But instead of splashing in the pool, Redding ran around the playground in his swim trunks because the Hyde Park neighborhood pool he’d come to swim in was closed today.</p><p> Mon, 16 Jun 2014 19:57:52 +0000 Audrey McGlinchy 10582 at http://kut.org Austin Lifeguard Shortage Leaves Many City Pools Closed City Spends $9.6 Million to Buy Southwest Austin Golf Course http://kut.org/post/city-spends-96-million-buy-southwest-austin-golf-course <p>The Austin City Council approved the acquisition of the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.greyrockgolfclub.com/">Grey Rock Golf Club's </a>courses and tennis facility today, allocating $9.6 million of the Parks and Recreation Department’s budget for the purchase.</p><p>The course sits on 292 acres of south of Lady Bird Lake, adjacent to the Circle C subdivision. The course lies in the environmentally sensitive Edwards Aquifer Recharge Zone.</p><p>City Deputy Chief Financial Officer Greg Canally called the Grey Rock purchase a “unique opportunity to acquire a piece of land that actually comes with an existing revenue stream.” Some of that existing revenue will be leveraged to pay off an estimated $400,000 in debt service; the department estimates the revenue will cover half of that amount.</p><p> Thu, 20 Mar 2014 20:58:29 +0000 Kelly Krupa 10010 at http://kut.org City Spends $9.6 Million to Buy Southwest Austin Golf Course Coming Soon to Austin Parks: Brush-Clearing Goats? http://kut.org/post/coming-soon-austin-parks-brush-clearing-goats <p class="p1">The Sustainable Food Center's <a href="http://www.sfcfarmersmarket.org/markets/sfc-farmers-market-east">East Austin farmer's market </a>had a perennially irritating problem: Poison ivy was blocking a portion of the market's space. They couldn't use chemicals or herbicides <span class="s1">— it wouldn't exactly jive with their goal of sustainability.&nbsp;</span></p><p class="p3">So they got creative, turning to a four-legged, environmentally (and people) friendly alternative: Goats.</p><p class="p3">Now, Austin parks may be looking to adopt the strategy to beautify green spaces across the city, as well.</p><p> Tue, 22 Oct 2013 19:51:54 +0000 Andrew Weber 8993 at http://kut.org Coming Soon to Austin Parks: Brush-Clearing Goats? Burn Bans Issued for Austin and Central Texas http://kut.org/post/burn-bans-issued-austin-and-central-texas <p>Dry conditions have led to more burn bans being issued for Austin and surrounding areas.</p><ul><li>The <a href="http://austintexas.gov/department/parks-and-recreation">Austin Parks and Recreation Department</a> issued a burn ban today for all city parks.</li></ul><p>The ban temporarily prohibits open fires and grilling in parks. Smoking continues to be prohibited in parks. The ban does not include propane grills and stoves in designated picnic areas.</p><p> Wed, 10 Jul 2013 20:46:15 +0000 Sebastian Herrera 8330 at http://kut.org Burn Bans Issued for Austin and Central Texas Does Austin's Newest Park Have Enough Funding? http://kut.org/post/does-austins-newest-park-have-enough-funding <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Just days after its </span><a href="http://austintexas.gov/news/roy-g-guerrero-colorado-river-metropolitan-park-grand-opening" style="line-height: 1.5;">grand opening</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">, Roy G. Guerrero Metropolitan Park already faces an uncertain future.</span></p><p>The Austin Parks and Recreation Department's budget allows for only four full-time workers to maintain a 400-acre complex of trails, playgrounds, sports fields and other features<strong>.</strong></p> Thu, 04 Jul 2013 00:06:59 +0000 Hector Perez 8282 at http://kut.org Does Austin's Newest Park Have Enough Funding? Parks and Rec Board Approves Auditorium Shores Renovation http://kut.org/post/parks-and-rec-board-approves-auditorium-shores-renovation <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;"><a href="http://www.austinparks.org/our-parks.html?parkid=598">Auditorium Shores</a> is a step closer to closing for a year.</span></p><p>Today, the Austin Parks and Recreation Board voted to recommend that City Council approve <a href="http://kutnews.org/post/turf-improvements-could-close-auditorium-shores-year">a plan to upgrade the park</a> with a $3.5 million donation from an Austin-<span style="line-height: 1.5;">based event planning company </span><a href="http://www.c3presents.com/">C3<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Presents.</span></a>&nbsp;You can <a href="http://austintx.swagit.com/play/05032013-522">watch that meeting online</a>.&nbsp;</p><p> Sat, 04 May 2013 00:42:12 +0000 Marissa Barnett 7624 at http://kut.org Parks and Rec Board Approves Auditorium Shores Renovation In Austin Parks, Burn Ban Lifted http://kut.org/post/austin-parks-burn-ban-lifted <p>The rain we’ve had lately isn’t enough to get rid of the drought, but it is enough to get rid of the burn ban in Austin Parks.</p><p>Austin Parks and Recreation is <a href="http://austintexas.gov/news/burn-ban-lifted-austin-city-parks-and-nature-preserves">lifting the ban</a>, effectively immediately, and removing the plastic that’s been wrapped around barbecue grills.</p><p>The lifting of the ban also means campfires are okay, but only at <a href="http://austintexas.gov/department/city-parks">Emma Long Metropolitan Park</a>.</p><p> Sat, 20 Apr 2013 02:05:00 +0000 Trey Shaar 7434 at http://kut.org In Austin Parks, Burn Ban Lifted City of Austin Needs Lifeguards http://kut.org/post/city-austin-needs-lifeguards <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The City of Austin is reporting a shortage of people applying to be lifeguards.&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The <a href="http://www.austintexas.gov/department/pools-and-swimming">Aquatics&nbsp;Division</a> of the Parks and Recreation Department needs more&nbsp; applicants than it has jobs for, because not everyone will get through <a href="http://www.austintexas.gov/sites/default/files/files/Parks/Aquatics/Training%20Course%20Brochure.pdf">the training</a>.</span></p><p>“We have 600 positions open, but they need a thousand applicants to fill those 600 positions, because, not everybody has the qualifications," Parks and Recreation spokesperson&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">Victor&nbsp;Ovalle</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;said.</span></p><p> Sat, 13 Apr 2013 00:18:37 +0000 Nathan Bernier 7352 at http://kut.org City of Austin Needs Lifeguards Grants Would Help Revamp Austin Landmarks http://kut.org/post/grants-would-help-revamp-austin-landmarks <p>The <a href="http://www.austintexas.gov/hlc">Historical Landmark Commission of Austin</a> meets tonight to decide the future of four grants to preserve historical landmarks.</p><p>And every project may not get their slice of the $126,000 that’s been requested this year.</p> Mon, 01 Apr 2013 22:10:00 +0000 Andrew Weber 7173 at http://kut.org Grants Would Help Revamp Austin Landmarks How the City Council Decides Which Event Fees to Waive http://kut.org/post/how-city-council-decides-which-event-fees-waive <p>When planning to book a public venue in Austin, keep in mind the city is going to charge a bunch of fees, some are for permits, maintenance and cleanup. Organizers of large and well-attended gatherings have no problem paying those fees. But non-profits sponsoring smaller events sometimes ask the city to waive them.</p><p>This week, the city council will vote on five such waivers. With so many of these smaller events taking place, what happens when fees are waived?</p><p> Tue, 19 Mar 2013 10:37:00 +0000 Joy Diaz 6992 at http://kut.org How the City Council Decides Which Event Fees to Waive Meeting Tonight to Help Plot Future of Holly Power Plant http://kut.org/post/meeting-tonight-help-plot-future-holly-power-plant <p>City officials are looking for the public's help in deciding what to do with the land around the Holly Power Plant in East Austin, which is scheduled to be fully decommissioned by later this year.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Currently, plans have designated the 9.3 acres of surrounding land to be handed over to the Austin Parks &amp; Recreation Department for development into a park.</span></p><p> Mon, 25 Feb 2013 14:50:39 +0000 Austin Feldman 6730 at http://kut.org Meeting Tonight to Help Plot Future of Holly Power Plant Mount Bonnell May See Changes - Public Meeting Tonight http://kut.org/post/mount-bonnell-may-see-changes-public-meeting-tonight <p><strong>Update:</strong> For all those interested in voicing their opinions over potential changes to the iconic Austin destination, you can do that today at 6:30 p.m. during a public meeting at the Mayfield House and Nature Preserve.</p><p><strong>Original Story </strong>(Feb. 8, 12:40 p.m.): Alluring Austin overlook <a href="http://www.austinparks.org/our-parks.html?parkid=287">Mount Bonnell</a> may see some slight changes.</p><p>The Austin Parks and Recreation Department is partnering with the <a href="http://www.west-point.org/society/wps-centx/">West Point Society of Central Texas</a> to make updates at the historic park. The City of Austin is holding a community engagement meeting to field public input on the potential changes to the park.</p><p> Wed, 20 Feb 2013 12:16:26 +0000 Austin Feldman 6522 at http://kut.org Mount Bonnell May See Changes - Public Meeting Tonight Austin YMCA Wants to Avoid Another Lifeguard Shortage http://kut.org/post/austin-ymca-wants-avoid-another-lifeguard-shortage <p>The YMCA of Austin is trying to recruit lifeguards earlier this year.</p><p>In order to prevent last year’s shortage of lifeguards, the YMCA of Austin has expanded its schedule of YMCA and American Red Cross Lifeguarding Certification classes this spring.</p><p>Last summer, the YMCA hired 200 lifeguards. This summer, they're hoping to hire 250. But, YMCA spokesperson Sean Doles said the lifeguard shortage was not an issue just at the YMCA, but in the community as a whole—and even across the nation. Fri, 15 Feb 2013 19:29:07 +0000 Bobby Blanchard 6622 at http://kut.org Austin YMCA Wants to Avoid Another Lifeguard Shortage Problems, Expenses and Delays for Bartholomew Pool http://kut.org/post/problems-expenses-and-delays-bartholomew-pool <p>The City of Austin’s Aquatic Division manages over 50 public pool facilities. The Bartholomew Pool, in particular, has demanded significant time and funding from the city since 2009.</p><p>Now, the city says the pool will need even more time and money before it's ready to reopen. Wed, 06 Feb 2013 18:28:23 +0000 Ann Choi 6482 at http://kut.org Problems, Expenses and Delays for Bartholomew Pool While State Cemetery Prospers, Austin Resting Place in Disrepair http://kut.org/post/while-state-cemetery-prospers-austin-resting-place-disrepair <p></p><p>Cemeteries in many cities are considered important historical places, memorials to famous and influential people. Consider <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Granary_Burying_Ground">the Granary</a> in Boston,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.highgate-cemetery.org/">Highgate</a>&nbsp;in London,&nbsp;the&nbsp;<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P%C3%A8re_Lachaise_Cemetery">Pere&nbsp;Lachaise</a>&nbsp;in Paris. &nbsp;But in Austin only one cemetery fits that category – and the State Cemetery is maintained by Texas.&nbsp;</p><p>And the contrast between the state cemetery in Austin and the city owned ones - is breathtaking.&nbsp;</p><p> Mon, 04 Feb 2013 16:29:51 +0000 Joy Diaz 6441 at http://kut.org While State Cemetery Prospers, Austin Resting Place in Disrepair Drink Up: Water Coolers Back on the Hike and Bike Trail http://kut.org/post/drink-water-coolers-back-hike-and-bike-trail <p>Runners, cyclists and trail patrons welcomed the return of the water coolers at the Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail this morning.</p><p>RunTex, a local sporting goods store, has provided the water to trail-users for twenty years. But last November, <a href="http://kutnews.org/post/water-under-bridge-coolers-returning-hike-bike-trail">the city removed the coolers</a> over sanitation concerns.</p><p> Thu, 31 Jan 2013 20:24:22 +0000 Marissa Barnett 6422 at http://kut.org Drink Up: Water Coolers Back on the Hike and Bike Trail Austin Considers Allowing All-Night Access to Trails http://kut.org/post/austin-considers-allowing-all-night-access-trails <p><span style="LINE-HEIGHT: 1.5">The Austin City Council could decide today whether to start a pilot program aimed at keeping some hike and bike trails open 24 hours a day.</span></p><p>The proposal by council member Chris Riley has little support from his peers because it comes with the hefty price tag: a little over $3 million a year for extra police patrols. But whether it goes forward or not, the program is making the city think about how it will patrol trails in the future. Thu, 31 Jan 2013 11:13:00 +0000 Joy Diaz 6411 at http://kut.org Austin Considers Allowing All-Night Access to Trails City to Shut Off Water to Emma Long Park http://kut.org/post/city-shut-water-emma-long-park <div class="messaging-message" id="aim_msg_50eb6533-0001-00000b-6444e2"><div class="row clearfix"><div class="content buddy "><div><span class="messaging-history styled-scrollable" style="bottom: 50px;" tabindex="24"><span style="font-family:serif;font-size:medium">Starting next Monday, the city will shut off water to <a href="http://austinparks.org/our-parks.html?parkid=247">Emma Long Metropolitan Park</a> for about three months, causing a major inconvenience for campers and others who use the park. Emma Long has 66 campsites, hundreds of places to picnic, and beaches.</span></span><p></p> Tue, 08 Jan 2013 00:55:07 +0000 Nathan Bernier 6092 at http://kut.org City to Shut Off Water to Emma Long Park Water Under the Bridge: Coolers Returning to Hike & Bike Trail http://kut.org/post/water-under-bridge-coolers-returning-hike-bike-trail <p>The coolers are coming back in the new year.</p><p>A <a href="http://www.kxan.com/dpp/news/local/austin/runners-question-missing-water-coolers">report this morning</a> that the popular water coolers on the Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail had been removed got pulses racing.</p><p><a href="http://site.runtex.com/">Run Tex</a> and <a href="http://www.roguerunning.com/">Rogue Running</a> have provided free water to trail enthusiasts for years. But the practice apparently ran afoul of health and safety regulations: about two weeks ago, the water coolers evaporated from the trail.</p><p> Tue, 11 Dec 2012 18:46:30 +0000 Wells Dunbar 5876 at http://kut.org Water Under the Bridge: Coolers Returning to Hike & Bike Trail Construction and Closures Ahead for Hike and Bike Trail http://kut.org/post/construction-and-closures-ahead-hike-and-bike-trail <p>Two separate projects on Lady Bird Lake may temporarily get in the way of folks using part of the hike and bike trail.</p><p>The city is getting ready to begin work along the Shoal Creek peninsula near the Seaholm Power Plant. Construction begins soon, and is expected to last six months. Portions of the hike and bike trail near the peninsula and the parking lot west of Shoal Creek and South of Cesar Chavez will be closed and those using the trail will be detoured to Cesar Chavez.</p><p> Wed, 05 Dec 2012 14:34:54 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5824 at http://kut.org Construction and Closures Ahead for Hike and Bike Trail