White Rock Lake, just a few miles southeast of downtown Dallas is legendary for its beautiful scenery, aquatic life and charming small marine craft including sailboats, row boats, kayaks and canoes. You may recall, LakeHouseLifer.com did a White Rock Lake cover blog back in May describing the area as a quiet, serene place for small craft boating and sailing, jogging, biking and family get together’s. It’s also been said that White Rock Lake is the “Crown Jewel of Dallas’ Park System,” and enjoyed by more than 1 million visitors a year. However, this year’s 4th of July observation almost turned ugly, due to an unfortunate, accidental sewage spill at a construction site several miles northwest of the lake last week.
The spill happened as a construction contractor accidentally broke an underground sewer line. The result was a reported estimate of 1 million gallons of raw sewage spilling into a creek north of Dallas that feeds into White Rock Lake. City officials thankfully continued to keep the public up-to-date on their immediate response to the situation. And, they’ve advised that, as of Monday afternoon, after crews have been working tirelessly around the clock trying to prevent the sewage from entering the Lake, their efforts paid off. Lake activities will resume on Monday and the Dog Park will re-open on Tuesday.
So, Dallas city officials confirm that lake activities, including sailing, rowing and approved, light marine craft may resume effective Monday July, 2nd. (Swimming is still prohibited by city ordinance.)
Walking, Running, Bicycling
White Rock Lake is famous for its outdoor and healthy lifestyle patrons. The White Rock Lake Trail is one of the most scenic spots in Dallas to take a stroll, ride your bike, or head out for a short, medium or long run.
One of Dallas’ best paths, the White Rock Lake trail, covers a 9 mile stretch that circles the lake and gives runners and walkers a beautiful, scenic setting.
If you’re training for a marathon and the nine miles is not long enough, the lake trail interconnects with another 7.5 mile path at the White Rock Creek trail, just north of the lake.
Dogs are welcome to walk or run along with you on the trail but be advised that Dallas law requires that all dogs be on a leash and within control of the owner at all times. Dog owners must also pick up waste after pets.
White Rock Lake is also great place for bicyclers. Most cyclists stay off the walking/running trail and ride on the road. The road route is approximately 11 miles (as opposed to 9 miles on the walking/running path). And, if you’re looking for a longer ride, you can connect up with that earlier mentioned White Rock Creek trail on the north side of the lake. This will take riders on a 7.5 mile trip. Remember that Dallas has a helmet law for bicyclists. Bikes must also have lights if you’re going out after dark. Obey all traffic laws and check behind before moving left to pass.
White Rock Lake Dog Park
White Rock Lake also has a lovely, recently upgraded dog park for you and your Best Dog Friend (BDF). The newly renovated White Rock Lake Dog Park is a 3-acre “off-leash” dog park, located on the northwest side of White Rock Lake Park at the intersection of Mockingbird Lane and W. Lawther Drive. This doggy paradise delivers great views of the lake, trail, and wildflower areas. You and your Best Dog Friend can enjoy the wide variety of big and small K-9’s that frequent this park. And, of course, you’re only steps away from the hiking, jogging and cycling trails we covered above.
Dallas Arboretum at White Rock Lake
Nestled on the shore of White Rock Lake, the Dallas Arboretum features 66 acres with 11 lush display gardens that offer seasonal color all year long. Home of Dallas Blooms Spring, the Southwest’s largest outdoor floral festival, the Arboretum provides a tranquil oasis where visitors are surrounded by the beauty of all four seasons. Amenities include the Hoffman Family Gift Shop, a dining terrace and several facilities available for rental.
Overlooking scenic White Rock Lake, the Arboretum offers the public a constantly changing calendar of adult, child and family events including workshops, lectures, dinners, receptions, weddings, and special events set in 66 acres of lush gardens and beautiful vistas.
Here’s the Dallas Arboretum line-up for Tuesday July 3rd and Wednesday July 4th
Celebrate the Red, White and Blues on 4th of July Weekend – Sponsored by Bank of America
July 4, 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Relax while listening to blues music and enjoy an all-American Independence Day picnic. Celebrate our American bandstand with classic music of our nation and dancing demonstrations throughout the garden. Enjoy a local selection of barbecue, ice cream, $2 hot dogs and $2 root beer floats at the Dining Terrace.
Active and retired/former military and first responders enjoy free admission with ID June 30 – July 4.
Live Blues Music
July 4, 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m., Pergola Terrace
Rob Holbert, Blues Saxophone
Window to the Wild Bird Flight Show
July 4, 10:30 a.m. Martin Rutchik Concert Stage and Lawn
Enjoy a 45 minute outdoor education flight training show with over five birds on the concert stage. Stick around at the end of the show for a meet and greet and Q&A with the birds and trainers.
A Tasteful Place Events
Empanada Cookhouse Cooking Demonstration and Sale
July 4, 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
The Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden
Storytime with Eddie the Eagle
10:00 a.m., First Adventure
Join Eddie the Eagle and enjoy a patriotic story with the United States national bird, the bald eagle.
Fruit Tastings: Red, White, and Fruit
12:00 & 2:00 p.m., Incredible Edible
Explore the phytonutrients in the colors of the American flag.
Rockets’ Red Glare! – Pop: Power of Pressure
4:00 p.m., The Glade
What makes things go POP!? Explore the science behind air pressure and have an explosive time!
Creativity Corner, Sponsored by Neiman Marcus (Appropriate for All Ages)
Create arts and crafts using and discussing natural components such as flowers, plants, animals, conservation, and recycling (while supplies last).
Fourth of July craft: Stars & Stripes
9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., 7/3-7/4
So, there you have it on the latest story about this year’s 4th of July on White Rock Lake. Thanks to all of the city workers and leadership, White Rock Lake is back in business! So, what are you waiting for? Grab the bicycle, dog leash, kayak, canoe or Arboretum ticket and head out for a great White Rock Lake day this week!