Dulac Park

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a 1,071 acre (4.3 km²) public park in New Calais, Louisiana, is approximately 25% larger than Central Park in New York City, the municipal park recognized by Americans nationwide as the archetypal urban green space. Although it is an urban park whose land is owned by the City of New Calais, it is administered by the Dulac Park Improvement Association, an arm of state government, not by the New Calais Parks and Parkways Department. Dulac Park is a largely self-supporting public park, with most of its annual budget derived from self-generated revenue through user fees and donations.

History

Dulac Park was established in the late-18th century on land fronting Dupree Road, and acted as a cemetery for the original settlers. The park originally extended only a short distance back from Dupree Road, as the land was originally slated for development.

In the first two decades of the 20th century, numerous improvements were undertaken by the Dulac Park Improvement Association. Notable park landmarks like the Carousel, the Rose Garden, The Zoological Gardens and the Blackwell Playhouse were constructed. Dulac Park’s governing board also accomplished a number of large land acquisitions, such that the park assumed its current boundaries. A master plan, by Dulac, Wilson & Lake was commissioned to guide the development of the greatly enlarged park; this plan was largely implemented in the 1930s by numerous federal relief agencies, such as the Works Progress Administration.

After World War II, the Sheridan Gardens golf course was extended nine holes to 27, with a luxurious new golf clubhouse added as well, and multiple rounds of expansion and improvement occurred involving various park facilities. By the 1980s, Dulac Park featured two additional 18-hole golf courses, over 30 tennis courts, numerous other athletic fields and facilities, and the newly expanded New Calais Zoological Gardens. However, as was the case with many urban parks during this period, Dulac Park began to suffer neglect, the result of insufficient maintenance due to budget cuts. Towards the end of this period the Friends of Dulac Park were formed (1988) to rally support and raise resources for the park.

Since 2011 Dulac Park has hosted the Extreme Sports Convention (XCON), a week long celebration of urban athleticism and action sports of all kinds that draws some of the biggest names in world of extreme sports.

Blackwell Playhouse

The Carousel

Dulac Park Zoological Gardens

Rose Garden

Sheridan Gardens Golf Course

XCON Extreme Sports Park

Dulac Park

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