Goliad State Park
Weekends in March
Saturday, February 22 through Sunday, March 23, 2003
|Goliad State Park is located next to Goliad ,
Texas. Goliad is in Goliad County Texas, This is
in the South Texas Plains region
of Texas. The Texas State Parks web site
has information and a map of the park.
Sunday, February 23, 2003
Goliad is a terrific little town. They have a nice town square that is accessible from from a park trail. That is, you can take a park trail all the way to the town square. Around the town square is the Market House Museum and Fannin Plaza. The second Saturday of every month from March through November is Market Days - a street market/fair around the town square.
Additionally, there are a number of other attractions in the area. Another trail from the park takes you across the San Antonio River to General Zaragoza State Historic Site, Grave of Col. James W Fannin Jr and Men and the Presidia La Bahia. Down the road in Fannin is the Fannin Battleground State Historic Site.
March is a good month to visit Goliad. The Goliad County Fair and Rodeo is March 13 through 16. They have an Antique Farm Equipment Show on March 15. Also, the 17th Annual Goliad Massacre is March 29 and 30. This is when the historical events leading up to the Goliad Massacre are re-enacted.
I'm looking forward to exploring the Goliad area. This past weekend, we didn't have much time to explore.
Sunday, March 2, 2003
On Saturday we went through the refurbished replica of the Mission Nuestra Senora del Espiritu Santo de Zuniga (AKA Mission Espiritu Santo). This is part of the Goliad State Park. The interior of the church is probably historically accurate. It is very sparsely decorated. Compared to a modern Catholic parish, it is empty. The parishioners didn't have a place to sit. They all had to stand. it is a bit weird. Your access is limited to the main hall of the church and the outside hallway to the granary. I couldn't see how to look through the priest's quarters or the mission school and workshop areas. I really wanted to climb the bell tower. The stairs leading to the bell tower are roped off. While we didn't go with a tour group, there was a tour guide talking to a group when we first got there. She was a very good guide. I think next time, I'll go through the church with a guide.
Fannin Battleground State Historic Park - We also drove over to the Fannin Battleground State Historic Park. It is about 10 miles east up US highway 59 outside Fannin. It is off the highway a bit. You can't miss the brown Parks Department signs on the highway. Fannin is a pretty small town. Don't expect much there. The park is really tiny as far as parks go. It is also in serious need of repair. Who is Fannin? Just after the Alamo, Fannin and his forces of around 400 men were fighting Santa Anna's army. Santa Anna's army was superior. Fannin surrendered. Fannin and folks were taken to the Presidio. They expected to be treated as prisoners of war. Instead, they were treated as criminals and most were executed. Ironically, before the battle where Fannin and company surrendered, they had taken and held the Presidio for some time. We have all heard the battle cry, "Remember the Alamo!" It is really "Remember Goliad! Remember the Alamo!"
This is off topic a bit - but - I really liked the John Wayne movie, The Alamo. Some might view it as campy but I found it to be heroic. They never mention the sacrifice at Goliad. Probably because it happened after the Alamo.
Zaragoza Birthplace State Historical Park - Ignacio Zaragoza's birthplace is just outside the Presidio La Bahia. It is its own state park - Zaragoza Birthplace State Historical Park. Ignacio Zaragoza is a Mexican general who won an important battle that ensured Mexico's independence from European power. The battle of Puebla ended on May fifth, 1862. Cinco de Mayo. Cinco de Mayo is a big deal in Mexico and among Mexican immigrants in the US. There is also a statue of him out in front of the Presidio.
The Presidio La Bahia is owned/operated by the Victoria Archdiocese. It cost us $3 each to get in and wander around. It is well run and worth the money. The chapel is very nice. As a museum, it has good displays. The Presidio is literally and figuratively a fort. It looks like it would have been fairly easy to defend.
Fannin Grave Site - Behind the Presidio is the grave site of Fannin and his men. Rather sobering. After being executed (shot), they were piled up and set on fire. Then, after General Sam Houston and the Texas army kicked old Santa Anna's behind at San Jacinto, General Rusk and his army came to Goliad to recover and bury the bodies with military honors. There is a monument at the grave site.
Next weekend I hope to go to the Goliad Market Day which is a fair held around the Goliad courthouse square.
Saturday, March 8, 2003 - Goliad Market Days
The Goliad Market Days happens on the second Saturday of the Month (March through November). The venders setup their booths around the courthouse. The courthouse stands in the town square, alone and under renovation. This is the first fair like this I've been to. I can't tell if there is anything ordinary or extraordinary about it. I had fun. I bought a half pound of pecans. The pictures are down here. I had hoped to find the Market House Museum and Visitor Center. There were too many cars and people around.
Unfortunately, the Market House is closed on Sundays. I looked around and it looks interesting. I'll be back on a Saturday when they are open. You can see the pictures down here.
This is a great park. It is located across from the Market House Museum. The picnic tables are very sturdy and have electrical power outlets. I bet these are very popular at Easter. Also, the park has a super playground for children. All in all, a good location for hanging out. Pictures can be found here.
I don't much like the idea of a hanging tree. But there it was in the courthouse square. Pictures are here.
Friday, March 14, 2003 - Goliad County Fair
|We were living in San Antonio during the October 1998 flood. We got over 19 inches of rain at our home in Northwest San Antonio. We weren't even in an area that got the most rain. The marker below shows the high water point and is in the lower right hand of the ranger station building pictured below right. This area is below the Mission Espiritu Santo. The ranger station is above the campgrounds. Most of the park would have been under water. The US 183 bridge across the San Antonio River was rebuilt in 2000. As a result of that flood.|
|Above and below is The Angel of Goliad Hike-Bike-Nature Trail. This trail connects the town square of Goliad to the park and the Presidio La Bahia. Most of the trail is either asphalt or wood decking. There are no steps. It was made to ride a bicycle on.|
|Above Left - US 183 runs above a park road. Above Right - The Angel of Goliad Hike-Bike-Nature Trail takes you across the San Antonio River and on to the Presidio La Bahia.|
|Below - We have been getting more rain than usual. The San Antonio River is at flood level. Some of the primitive campsites along the river are closed due to high water.|
Below Left - The fellow riding the John Deere tractor below is a park host. They work 24 hours a week in exchange for free camping. The mowing job is one of my dream careers. I really like mowing grass using big tractors. I have watched this guy mow the grass every week. It may be winter but stuff is still really growing here.
Below Right - Our Campsite.
|The Mission Espiritu Santo interior is below. The poor parishioners had to stand during mass. I guess that is one way to keep folks awake during a boring homily.|
|Right and Below - This is the Fannin Battleground State Historical Park. It is a bit run-down.|
|The grave of Colonel Fannin and his men is shown below. They have inscribed the names of all the soldiers in the marble. This is a good monument to visit. Sobering. Unfortunately, it is surrounded by a mobile home park. No zoning.|
Right - The birthplace of General Ignacio Zaragoza of Cinco de Mayo fame.
|Right and Below - Presidio means fort. This is a fort with a church where mass is still said. Presidio La Bahia.|
Left - Linda looks out over the ramparts at Presidio La Bahia.
|Below - Our Lady of Loreto Chapel at the Presidio La Bahia|
|Saturday, March 8, 2003 - Goliad
The Goliad Market Days happens on the second Saturday of the Month (March through November). The venders setup their booths around the courthouse. The courthouse stands in the town square, alone and under renovation. This is the first fair like this I've been to. I can't tell if there is anything ordinary or extraordinary about it. I had fun. I bought a half pound of pecans. Parking wasn't as bad as I expected. We were able to park within a block of the square around 2:00 PM in the afternoon.
|The wildflowers are blooming in the park now (3/8). The Bluebonnets are one of those things that makes Texas so very special. You will see these flowers all over the state at different points in the spring. The flowers herald the beginning of spring wherever they are. It is spring in Goliad.|
|Below - The Group Trailer Area was full Saturday (3/8) night.|
Right - Right around the Goliad courthouse, there are a number of things to look at:
|Right - The Hanging Tree in all its glory. Goliad County Courthouse.|
|The Market Square building just off of the Goliad town square by the Goliad County Courthouse.|
|Above - The Depot is behind the Market House Museum. The picture (above right) was taken from the Fannin Plaza Park. The Depot has restrooms. Handy if you are spending your entire day at the park. To the left of the Depot is this old tractor.|
|Below - The Fannin Plaza Park is mostly set up as memorial to Fannin and his men. This park is within one block of the Goliad County Courthouse.|
|The Goliad County Fair
The Goliad County fair was in full swing when we arrived at the camp ground Friday night. The carnival rides were running. At 7:30, the rodeo started up. We should have gone. Linda didn't feel well and didn't want me to go without her. It was a warm evening and we hung out in our trailer with the door open and the fans blowing air through the roof. We could hear the rodeo announcer start the rodeo out with the history of Texas. I could imagine the rodeo pagent on horses with flags and banners as the re-enacted the birth of a nation (Texas).
Saturday morning I walked over to the Antique Farm Equipment Show. I was surprised there weren't Ford tractors in the show. The tractors that were there were great. I'm really glad I walked over there early in the morning. Saturday it started raining in the morning and has rained all day. I'm afraid there won't be a rodeo tinight. It is still raining.
Mid-afternoon, I walked back over to see the stock show part of the fair. It was really raining. The animals were wonderful. The kids were great too. I think the stock show seams to be oriented toward teaching children community values. The folks hanging around the stock show are real nice.
|Copyright © 2003 Larry Pearson - All Rights Reserved.|