For immediate release: February 28, 2022
FORT STOCKTON, Texas –Until they were pumped dry in the 1960s, Comanche Springs was among Texas’ six largest springs, flowing at least 30 million gallons a day onto the dry earth of Pecos County. The springs created a desert oasis that earned Fort Stockton the title of Spring City and renown across West Texas. It also supported dozens of family farms.
On Saturday, March 12, SpringsFest will celebrate this history and attempt to gather more of it with an event at the historic Annie Riggs Museum, 301 Main St, from 2-5:30 pm. The celebration will also include a tour of the springs which have recently begun flowing again in the late winter months when the aquifer rebounds from summer irrigation pumping. Highlights will include the following:
- Oral historians will be on hand to capture memories of Comanche Springs from anyone who remembers when they flowed year-round.
- Another team will be on hand to scan and digitize any photographs that individuals may have of the Springs flowing.
- An exhibit at the Annie Riggs Museum will showcase the Springs, with period photos of it in its heyday, and items from the Water Carnival, Fort Stockton’s annual celebration that started in 1936.
- A tour of the spring heads and a look at the passages that lie beneath the historic pool will commence at 1:30 pm. (Visitors will not be going underground but will be viewing the openings to the cave passages.) To join the spring tour, please arrive at the Annie Riggs Museum no later than 1:30 pm. The tour group will convoy to the historic Comanche Springs Bathhouse, which attracted many swimmers and tourists each summer during its heyday.
- From 3:00 to 5:00 pm, Ken Baucham, “the west Texas outlaw,” will take the stage at the Annie Riggs Museum for western and cowboy music.
It will be a day for visitors and local residents to reflect on a rich history that includes many icons of the west and to capture new memories. The event is free of charge, courtesy of Texas Water Trade, a nonprofit organization that is working to restore Comanche Springs using voluntary water transactions.
Click here for a map of the days festivities.
Contact: Peyton Fleming, Texas Water Trade
Phone: 857-361-2884 cell