Town of Wills Point: ‘Gateway’ to Lake Tawakoni

The town of Wills Point is located one hour east of Dallas in Texas. It was named for a settler William Wills, who was the tax assessor. The founding of Wills Point by some accounts is 1873. An engineer for the California Construction Company designed the town later named by the land commissioner for the Texas and Pacific Railway. Other accounts list 1870 as the founding date because the United States Post Office for Wills Point was established. William Wills built a log cabin in the area and turned his land into a resting area for travelers. This original log cabin from around 1848 is preserved in Bruce Park by the Business and Professional Women’s Club. Also available on a historic tour is a railroad depot museum, which houses past history of Wills Point. You can still drive on the original brick streets in the downtown area.

Wills Point is referred to as the ‘Gateway’ to Lake Tawakoni. This reservoir has over 200 miles of shoreline running through three counties. Swimming, fishing, hiking and boating is available. Licenses and other gear can be purchased at various shops in Wills Point. On the southeast side of the lake is Lake Tawakoni State Park, with a swimming beach and over five miles of hiking trails. There are more than 100 species of birds as well as other animals that can be seen from the trails. The lake contains bass, catfish and crappie for fishing. There are plenty of multi-use campsites available for reservation.

Wills Point is the official “Bluebird Capital of Texas”. The third Saturday in April is celebrated with a bluebird festival. Food, live entertainment and crafts are available from local merchants and vendors. Plenty of information about the bluebird, including driving tours of the many nesting box areas that are set up all over the county. Bluebird houses and other merchandise are available for purchase. A diagram to build and hang your own box is available on their website. Other educational information and programs are available from On the Wing Again, a wild bird rehabilitation program and East Texas Beekeepers. During the festival is a quilt show with quilts handmade by local quilters. An antique tractor display is part of the annual festival with rare tractors from the past. A traveling carnival comes to town for the weekend as part of the bluebird festival.

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