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Top 5 Things To Do In Abilene This Memorial Day [VIDEOS]

Memorial Day is just around the corner, and contrary to popular belief,  there are plenty of things to do in Abilene.  Here are my top 5 things to do in Abilene this Memorial Day.

William Thomas Cain/Getty Images

First and foremost, we must remember why we celebrate Memorial Day.  Sure, it’s a day off for a lot of people with a chance to fire up the grill, put the brew on ice and spend some time with friends and family.  However,  Memorial Day is a time to reflect and commemorate our fallen soldiers.  These soldiers put it all out there and put their own lives at risk to secure our freedom.

I’m not saying that we should all be solemn and not have that good time with our friends and families, I’m just saying to remember why we have this holiday.

That said, here are  my top 5 things to do in Abilene this Memorial Day.

5.  Fort Griffin State Historic Site


Fort Griffin

Fort Griffin State Historic Site is not actually in Abilene, however, it’s only a short 40 mile drive northeast of Abilene and is definitely a place the whole family can check out – especially since Memorial Day will kick off a slew of festivities.  First, Fort Griffin is giving FREE entrance to all veterans, military personnel and their families, all Summer long starting this Memorial Day weekend.  Second, there will be tons of activities for all families, including a weekend-long cat fishing tournament, horseshoe tournament, longhorn presentation, guided fort tour and nature hike, campfire tales, pee wee basketball, and kickball for the kids and the Stars and Skies of Texas star party.  So, if you’re wanting to shake things up a little bit and do something different this Memorial Day, check out the Fort Griffin State Historic Site.  For more info, check them out online at

fort griffin bridge

4.Hit the park


Abilene City Parks Map

Abilene has 27 parks that cover over 1,000 acres in Abilene, so you have a plethora of parks to choose from.  One of my favorite parks is Nelson Park where they have Festival GardensFestival Gardens is a facility that you can rent that will hold up to 160 people with kitchen facilities, volleyball, horseshoes, large BBQ grill and more .  So, if you have a lot of family and friends coming over, that is definitely a cool place to hang.  Nelson Park has several playgrounds for the kids and the Abilene Zoo is right next to it.  Other parks to check out include Oscar Rose Park, Red Bud Park, Arthur Sears Park, and Will Hair Park,  among  several others.  Of course, you can’t forget about the Abilene State Park in which I have included a video for you to check out. You can also Google parks in Abilene Texas to find out where more parks are.  You can also check out Rudy from our sister station, and his blog on the best parks in Abilene.

3. The Lake

fort phantom lake

I have to say, there is nothing quite like kicking back at the lake with friends and family, BBQ, cold drinks, family and the cool breeze off of the lake.  It’s just a really cool and peaceful place to hang out – even better if you have a boat or know someone that has a boat. There are several lakes in and around Abilene including Lake Fort Phantom, one of the most pristine historic sites in Texas.   Abilene has two other lakes besides Lake Fort Phantom including Lake Kirby, which has excellent fishing, and Lake Abilene which is at the Abilene State Park and offers scenic camping, hiking, nature study and more.   There are several other lakes around Abilene that are awesome, as well,  including Possum Kingdom Lake and Hubbard Creek Resevoir. So grab some camping gear, the grill and your family and friends and find a lake and chill out this Memorial Day weekend.

lake map

2. BBQ At Your House

Johannes Simon/Getty Images

Sometimes the simplest things, like staying home, can be fun if you do it right.  Your neighbors may disagree, but having a Memorial Day party at your house can not only be fun, but cheap and safe as well.  You don’t have to worry about traveling anywhere, you’re in the comfort of your own home, you can pound back a few and not have worry about getting back home and you don’t have to worry about the hustle and bustle of crowded places.  If you have a lot of kids coming over, rent an air castle.  There are several places in Abilene to rent one like Airtime Jumpers, Air Castles by Andrea, N & N Air Castles or Air Castles All Over, just to name a few.  If you’re staying at home, that means you’ll be preparing all of the food and busting out the grill to prepare said food.  Usually, there will be several Memorial Day specials at places like United Supermarket, Albertsons, HEB and Walmart.  So, you  might as well save some money on that killer Memorial Day weekend party on everything from meat, to appetizers to booze.

1. Honor The Fallen

Darren McCollester/Getty Images

Once again, don’t forget the reason why we celebrate Memorial Day.  The day is for remembering those that have gave their lives so that our lives are safer and better.  In honor of that, visit a fallen soldiers resting place.  Maybe you have a family member or friend  that served and died for our country.  Raise a flag and honor the fallen.  One way to honor the falling is attending the Memorial Day ceremony at Texas State Veterans Cemetery.  In fact, Dyes Air Force base will be performing the ceremony on Monday, May 30th at 11a.m.  The ceremony will honor America’s heroes of the past, present and future and will be highlighted with a speech from retired General Mike McMahon.

Whatever you decide to do this Memorial Day weekend, be safe and remember if you are going to be throwing down a massive party, to please drink responsible.

Here’s a tribute to Memorial Day video.  Happy Memorial Day.

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