Things to Do
The activities at this park include picnicking, nature study, and historical study. Arrangements can be made with the park staff to have weddings, family reunions, or other group functions in the picnic area and/or the historical facilities. Group tours by staff and volunteer docents are available with advanced scheduling, and regularly scheduled tours of the brewery are available on the weekends.
- Trail of Lights is held during the first half of December on selected evenings, where visitors can experience a trail, beautifully-decorated with Christmas lights, that overlooks the lighted town of La Grange. It follows along a 200-foot bluff and through the Kreische home, decorated more traditionally with Christmas trees, wreaths, lamps and candles, entertainment, and refreshments.
- Texas Heroes Day: Annual event on the Saturday closest to Sept. 18. Enjoy a day of honoring Texas heroes, including those who fought and died for the Republic of Texas. The event specially commemorates the men of the Dawson Massacre and the Mier Expedition. Enjoy pioneer craft demonstrations, re-enactors, cannon and musket salutes, dulcimer music, historic flag display, a special presentation, and guided tours.
The Monument Hill and Kreische Brewery Docent Organization sponsors these events, with assistance from the park staff.
- Activities Guide to the Natural Experience of Monument Hill and Kreische Brewery State Historic Sites
Group History Tours: Guided walking tours of the historic and scenic Monument Hill are available to groups of 10 or more, by reservation. Hear the history of Monument Hill and the Texas heroes interred here, who made the ultimate sacrifice to keep Texas free in the 1840s. Learn about German immigrant H. L. Kreische, his home and brewery, on the longer Historic and Scenic tour. Learn about the history of Monument Hill only in the shorter Monument Hill tour, accessible for the mobility impaired. Tours last approximately 45 minutes to 1.5 hours; no fees required; reservations required, deadline 14 days prior to tour.
Bastrop State Park, Buescher State Park, Palmetto State Park, Lake Somerville State Park and Stephen F. Austin State Park are all nearby overnight parks within easy driving distance for a day-trip visit.
A unique Painted Churches Tour is available to the south of the park in the countryside toward Schulenberg and Flatonia, featuring authentic 19th-century European style churches from German, Czech, and other similar cultures. Printed information is available from the park office or from the Schulenberg Chamber of Commerce.
The town of La Grange has many fine old buildings (including some that Mr. Kreische built) you can tour. The courthouse square features an 1890s architecturally significant courthouse building. A large monument to the heroes of the Dawson and Mier expeditions is located on the courthouse lawn. In one corner of the square is the Muster Oak, where Captain Nicholas Dawson and the men of his expedition gathered to ride to their fates at the battle at Salado Creek in San Antonio in 1842. Since that time, through eight wars and conflicts, Fayette County men have joined military service under this tree.
The old Fayette County Jail is a beautiful and historical old stone building at 171 South Main St., one block south of the square. It currently houses the Texas Heroes Museum. This museum, opened in the fall of 2016, displays artifacts of the sheriffs who served in this county jail from 1883 to 1985. Future displays will honor Texans who have served to secure and defend freedom and liberty from the time of the Texas Revolution to the present.
The beautifully restored Casino Hall houses the Main Street’s Visitors Center, where you can obtain information on amenities, overnight lodging, shopping, and sightseeing ((979) 968-3017). Ask about the old historical cemetery or historic district tours that are being developed through the Visitor's Bureau office. Do not miss La Grange's bakeries and restaurants, serving traditional and ethnic foods and pastries, as well as plain, good food.
The park has standing partnerships with many businesses, and can work with you or your group to contribute information for package tours both at the park and in the surrounding communities.
Fayette County has many attractions that will more than fill a weekend vacation. The Fayette County Tourism Association has a useful website with links to events and brochures. The Fayette County Record publishes a magazine called “Visit Fayette.” Do you have a smart phone? Get the GoFayCo app.
The communities of Round Top and Winedale are nearby. They feature German and English 19th century museums and buildings. Washington-on-the-Brazos State Historic Site is within driving distance, with a common theme of Texas Independence.
The bluff at Monument Hill is the northern limit of the Oakville Escarpment of Miocene era bearing sandstone. This escarpment or "cuesta" marks the boundary between the Upland Post Oak Woodlands and the Fayette Prairie environments. Here, along the bluff, eastern plant and animal communities of the woodlands and prairie coexist with an isolated colony of western species.
Numerous plants and animals common to the limestone-based soils of the Hill Country, 70 miles northwest, have been transported and deposited in this locale by the Colorado River, located at the base of the 200-foot bluff. These species flourish in pockets of alkaline soils produced through erosion of the calcareous sandstone cap of the escarpment. The occurrence of such biological diversity at one location is not singularly unique, but is uncommon, and lends itself to a beautiful place in Central Texas. Oak and cedar forests and predominately little bluestem prairie environments are intermixed throughout the park, with Mr. Kreische's old roads, trails, retaining walls, and buildings adding beauty and places of shelter to the environment. The park's nature trail has a list of more common plant and animal species and is available at the park headquarters for further study.
More information on the wildlife mentioned here: