The Annual History Hayride at Edgar Evins State Park has stood the test of time. This will be its 13th year to delight audiences seated on hay wagons that will make several stops along a circuit in the park. At each stop there will be a costumed character to tell about a person or event that took place in the park or area. The cost is $15 per person and the proceeds from this fundraiser will help the park. It is a project of the all-volunteer Friends of Edgar Evins State Park with the help of park staff.
Reservations and information are at www.foeesp.com/history-hayride For assistance phone (615) 765-5357. Ten wagons will leave at approximately 30-minute intervals from the park office beginning at 1 P.M. to begin the approximately 2 ½ hour circuit. Reservations will be for a specific report time.
Each year some popular characters return although new ones are added to keep it fresh and varied. This time we will go back decades to meet Charles T. Burton who lived on the Caney Fork River near Table Rock Island, which today is near the dam. He was almost 30 when he witnessed the 1872 hanging of 17-year-old John Presswood for the murder of Rachel Billings, an event that remained vivid in his mind for the rest of his life. This new role will be portrayed by Carl Halfacre, former park manager and resident of Baxter, who researched and wrote the script..
Homemade cookies and brownies will be for sell in individual portions in the park office along with complimentary coffee and hot chocolate. If the weather is cool enough there will also be a campfire in front of the office for roasting marshmallows.
The park is located on Center Hill Lake between Smithville and Cookeville at 1630 Edgar Evins Park Rd., Silver Point 38582. The easiest way to drive there from Woodbury is to turn off Highway 70-S toward Gassaway, through Liberty, left onto Dale Ridge Road at Snow Hill, over the dam, past the Corps of Engineers Office, then right at the park entrance, across from Big Rock Market and Caney Fork Outdoors.