Butler Park is one of my family’s go-to spots for summer fun. There are docks to explore, turtles to watch, views of the city to enjoy, trees for picnic shade, and the signature attraction: a large interactive fountain. Sandwiched between the Palmer Events Center and Dougherty Arts Center, across the street from Auditorium Shores, the park is centrally located, which makes a visit there an easy add-on to just about any downtown outing.
If you know in advance you’ll be hitting the park, pack a bike, trike, or scooter to use on the circular path leading up to the summit of Doug Sahm Hill. Atop the hill, kids will enjoy walking/skipping/hopping across a large map of Texas, while taking in the picturesque Austin skyline. Then comes the fun part – the ride, run, or roll back down the 35-foot hill!
Liz Carpenter Fountain Hours of Operation:
- Monday 12:00–9:45 p.m. (closed for maintenance from 8 a.m. to noon)
- Tuesday 8:00 a.m. – 9:45 p.m.
- Wednesday 8:00 a.m. – 9:45 p.m.
- Thursday 8:00 a.m. – 9:45 p.m.
- Friday 8:00 a.m. – 9:45 p.m.
- Saturday 8:00 a.m. – 9:45 p.m.
- Sunday 8:00 a.m. – 9:45 p.m.
- Water shoes – the pavement surrounding the fountain gets scorching hot in the summer.
- Patience when looking for parking. I always try the Dougherty Arts Center parking lot first, then look for street parking along Riverside. I sometimes cave and pay $7 to park in the Long Center lot.
- Sunscreen and hats – there is shade in the park, but none over the fountain or on Doug Sahm Hill.
For more information, visit the City of Austin website or call (512) 495-9163.