Eleanor Tinsley Park
500 Allen Parkway (map) (713) 752-0314
On the south shore of Buffalo Bayou, in the middle of Buffalo Bayou Park is Eleanor Tinsley Park. Apparently, the city wanted to name a park after Eleanor Tinsley, but didn’t want to build a new park, nor did they think the entire Buffalo Bayou Park should be named for her. So the result was a park-within-a-park.
This is where most of Houston’s big, impromptu events are held (like the Fourth of July celebration planned in June). The steep hillside sloping towards the bayou makes for great amphitheater-style seating, and the flat expanse of land at the bottom is typically the mosh pit. Temporary stages are usually perfectly positioned with Houston’s skyline as the backdrop, although the stage is occasionally located across the bayou in the middle of the disc golf course on the north shore. If you hear of a free concert here it’s worthwhile to come down (even if you have to shell out $10). If you’re in the mosh pit, and tall, you’ll end up right in front of the stage (most Houstonians are short). I’ve seen the Goo Goo Dolls, Smash Mouth, Clint Black and Randy Travis here. There’s plenty of beer available from the concessions during events.
But most of the time, this is just a park. There’s a sand volleyball court, four picnic tables, and a few swings for the kids. At the top of the hill, there’s a grove of trees and an abstract sculpture dedicated to all victims of crime.
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