Longhorn Cavern State Park
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|Longhorn Cavern State Park|
Tourists at Longhorn Cavern climb down steps built by the Civilian Conservation Corps.
|Location||Burnet County, Texas|
|Nearest city||Kingsland in Llano County, Texas|
|Area||645.62 acres (261 ha)|
|Governing body||Texas Parks and Wildlife Department|
Longhorn Cavern State Park is a state park located in Burnet County, Texas, United States. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is administrator of the facility. The land for Longhorn Cavern State Park was acquired between 1932 and 1937 from private owners. It was dedicated as a state park in 1932 and in 1938 was opened to the public. In 1971, the park was dedicated as a National Natural Landmark.
The park is named for Longhorn Cavern, a limestone cave formed by the cutting action of an underground river that receded thousands of years ago. Before the cave became a tourist attraction, it was used over the years by Indians, Confederate soldiers and outlaws, including outlaw Sam Bass.
From 1934 to 1942, Company 854 of the Civilian Conservation Corps constructed residences, pavilions and an observation tower in the National Park Service Rustic architectural style. They also explored and developed the cavern and built walkways.
In the 1920s, during the prohibition period, the cavern was used by Burnet County residents as a speakeasy. Performing musicians would entertain through the night. In 2006, Steven Kurtz, current curator of Longhorn Cavern State Park, re-introduced chamber music to the cave with the creation of the Simple Sounds concert series. The return of chamber music was featured on an episode of Bob Phillips' syndicated television series Texas Country Reporter, with Kaye Barlow as the travel guide. Not until February 14, 2008, did dancers return to the cave floor when local Burnet County band Redneck Jedi performed. On April 4, 2008, Redneck Jedi returned to the cave and recorded their fifth album, Unplugged and Underground, the first such recording inside the cave.
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Anson J. Hahn of Burnet is among the guides at Longhorn Cavern who conduct 90-minute tours for cave guests
- "A Cave with a Past | TPW magazine | December 2004". TPW magazine. Retrieved 2012-11-06.
- "Longhorn Cavern State Park". Longhorncaverns.com. Retrieved 2012-11-06.
- "Longhorn Cavern State Park debuts new lighting system | kvue.com Austin". Kvue.com. 2012-07-20. Retrieved 2012-11-06.