Lions Park

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The Future of Lions Park

About the Project

Lions Park Pool Waco’s Lions Park is a fixture in the hearts of generations of Wacoans; to those that played and raised families there, and to those that selflessly gave their time and efforts to build and operate this community treasure.

The City of Waco, Lions Park Trust Board, and many community partners are pleased to announce the revitalization of Waco’s beloved treasure, Lions Park at 1716 N 42nd St in Waco. This will be a long-term project requiring a big imagination!

In 2018, Waco Foundation convened a group of partners interested in the park and ultimately commissioned a survey that received more than 2,000 responses from Wacoans. The results of the survey were overwhelmingly positive when asked about its value to the community. Following this, the City of Waco made a commitment to revitalize this historic parkland.

In 2021 and 2022, the City of Waco’s funding was allocated for the redevelopment effort. Included in funding was support for Lions' transition and move out, environmental compliance and permitting, and the site cleanup contract.  Funds will further support the coming outreach and design process. The balance will contribute towards the future construction costs, to be supplemented by a number of sources and partners.

While the park will temporarily close to undergo a strategic planning and rebuilding process, the City of Waco has committed $2 million to ensure the brightest future for Lions Park.


Updates January 2023

  • Fencing removed.Arial View of Lions Park January 2023
  • Interim green space is open to the public.
  • OJB Landscape Architecture was selected to facilitate the public design process.
  • Work will begin with a first round of public engagement in Spring 2023.
  • Concept, design work, construction, operations, and cost estimates will be planned at this time to budget for future spending.
  • Design phase is anticipated to take 12-18 months.
  • Stay tuned for future updates!

History of Lions Park

We love reminiscing about Lions Park and all the stories from Wacoans about how they spent so much time there growing up. While the park you knew will be reimagined, the memories last forever!

Lions Park was established in 1952 by the Waco Lions as a unique and widely popular place for children. Volunteers and other community organizations have donated hundreds of hours and numerous resources to contribute to this local institution. The park has entertained generations of local families and visitors to Waco and was a must-do stop for any child, or children at heart.

When the Waco Lions began discussing providing a recreation area for the youth of Waco, it was William L. Baine who provided many of the ideas and design for the layout of the park. He developed the plans for the entrance way, supervised its construction, and the overall landscaping plan. He also supervised the landscaping. As a result of his efforts, Lions Park grew into a million-dollar effort and became known as one of the most beautiful areas in Waco.

In August if that year, the first part of a recreational plan was put into motion for what became known as Lions Park. Plans were coordinated and approved by the City of Waco Parks and Recreation Department. The overall project, over a period of five years, was estimated to cost approximately $255,000.

Features in the park built over the years included a grandstand, bleachers, a baseball diamond and a putt-putt golf course. A swimming pool was also added and at the time, the opening day was televised and claimed by the tile industry to be the largest swimming pool in the State of Texas.

In June of 1965, Kiddie Land was added to Lions Park and continued to expand with rides like go-karts, a large slide and a train.

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Will the park look the same or have the same attractions?

Anything is possible, but we just don’t know yet. If anything is brought back, it will most likely be new.

The City of Waco will be engaging with a professional consulting firm to devise a complete master plan for the park. This website is the best place to stay informed along the way!

As we move forward in the process, strategic planning will happen with committees, community input (including kids) and from that, we hope to have a solid plan about what shape the park takes in the future.

Can we donate money to the park?

At some point there could be an opportunity for fundraising depending on the design and development phases.

How long will the planning process take?

Planning will be taking place for the park during the next 18 months.


1716 N. 42nd Street, Waco, TX 76710  View Map

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