Tejano Walking & Music Legends Trails
by Lori Renteria
The Tejano Healthy Walking Trail and Trail of Tejano Music Legends are currently being developed for east Austin. A labor of love by 30+ volunteers, the Tejano Healthy Walking Trail was designed and created by the East Cesar Chavez Neighborhood Planning Team and funded by the City of Austin’s Neighborhood Enhancement Fund. It features historical and cultural gems in the East Cesar Chavez and adjacent Holly neighborhoods. The Trail Guide describes 22 sites along the 4.9 mile route which is mostly on sidewalks and streets shaded by our heritage trees.
The Trail of Tejano Music Legends is 5.6 miles with 7 sites and is better navigated by bike, Segway, horse carriage, or pedi-cab. Part of the Trail runs along the Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail. The Music Legends Trail was created and designed by the Austin Latino Music Association. There are unique metal sculptures dedicated to Legends, many who grew up in our neighborhood. We’ve included the Music Legends Trail in our Guide and both groups are now collaborating to connect the Trails and add new sites, as well as improving promotion of our Trails for fitness, health, historic preservation, and cultural awareness, especially among the many schools in our area. Five-thousand copies of the Trail Guide were printed and were so popular that we've already distributed them all. We hope to add more sites, revise the map, and then print a 2nd edition soon. A pdf version can be found by clicking here: Tejano Trail Guide
In September, 2012, with help from the City’s Public Works Dept., both Trails were designated by the US Dept. of Interior as National Recreation Trails. With this designation, we were granted a planning grant by the Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Program under the US National Park Service. We are planning to take the Trail Guide virtual, expand the number of routes to meet the needs of different user groups, and create a strategic plan for maintenance, improvements, and sustainability over the long-term so the next generation occupying this neighborhood can preserve what came from this generation of residents and local businesses. If you would like to join the planning process by volunteering to serve on one of our Trail working groups, or for more information please contact: Justin Bates, Community Planner/Presidential Management Fellow, National Park Service: Rivers, Trails & Conservation Assistance at 512-245-7232 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org