Developing The Tejano Trails
The Austin Tejano Trails has been a labor of love for a dedicated group of volunteers committed to preserving the history, diversity, and cultural assets in East Austin. Just 10 blocks from the Texas State Capitol and on the north shore of Lady Bird Lake, The Austin Tejano Trails are a hop, skip and jump over or under I-35 from Austin’s famous East Sixth Entertainment District, Austin’s Convention Center, downtown hotels, and the Rainey Street bar scene. Download a copy of our Trail Guide here and watch a wild and crazy go cam video covering the whole enchilada here.
With the US Interior Dept. designation of our Trails as a National Recreation Trail and with technical support provided by the National Parks Service: Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance program, we are expanding the number of sites on our Trails and forming a strategic plan for the long-term sustainability and maintenance of this unique urban trail.
The Trail of Tejano Music Legends is 5.6 miles with 7 sites and is better navigated by bike, Segway, horse carriage, or pedi-cab. Part of the Trail runs along the Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail. The Music Legends Trail was created and designed by the Austin Latino Music Association in . There are unique metal sculptures dedicated to Legends, many who grew up in our neighborhood.
We’ve included the Music Legends Trail in our Guide and both groups are now collaborating to connect the Trails and add new sites, as well as improving promotion of our Trails for fitness, health, historic preservation, and cultural awareness, especially among the many schools in our area.
The Tejano Healthy Walking Trail was developed by East Cesar Chavez Neighborhood leaders who wanted to accomplish three goals established in the official Neighborhood Plan:
- Preserve historic structures and affordable homes. This Trail recognizes native families’ contributions to build Austin into the Live Music Capital of the World. This historically working class neighborhood is adjacent to downtown Austin and sits 10 blocks from the Texas Capitol and 15 blocks from the UT Austin Campus. The neighborhood is in transition from being a low-income, minority community into a desirable location for young professionals and new urbanists. Our concern for native neighborhood people, especially retirees struggle to keep up with rising taxes to stay in their family homes, leads us to believe that educating younger family members might help keep their family roots in the neighborhood.
- Educate speculators and newcomers about the historic assets in hopes they might choose to upgrade old structures rather than destroy them. Many have stood for over 100 years and define the neighborhood character. Distribution of the Trail Guide and getting access to it online has helped those who couldn’t walk it themselves. Download it here.
- Encourage a healthier lifestyle, especially for youth and seniors who rarely walk, bike or exercise. The Trail is promoted at four schools, two health clinics, community gardens, the AB Cantu Pan American Recreation Center, Camacho Youth Activity Center, adjacent libraries, and the East Austin Neighborhood Center - all identified on the Trail Map.
Meet the Steering Committee
Our Steering Committee is made up of rock star volunteers who are local leaders with a passion for preserving the history and culture of East Austin.
Executive Director, Bike Texas
Community Planner, National Parks Service
Executive Director, Preservation Austin
East Cesar Chavez Neighborhood, Preservation Chair
Vice President, Tejano Music Coalition
Communications & Marketing, AISD
If you are interested in helping the Tejano Trails continue to develop, maintain and advocate for the preservation of East Austin, please consider donating.