Weaver Park Gets A Warm Welcome

The city's newest oasis has a burgeoning following.

Weaver Park's official grand opening doesn't take place until Saturday afternoon, but its stunning pier jutting into St. Joseph Sound is already buzzing with legions of anglers.

Extending more than 200 yards into the water, the pier is by far the longest in north Pinellas County, complete with angler stations at the west end. Giddy fisherman there this week said trout were plentiful and hearty catfish were to be had.

"It's going to be a shame when everyone learns of this spot. It's not just the fishing. It's really beautiful this far out on the pier," said Mack McKenzie of Dunedin.

McKenzie enjoyed the park's view of and also talked about catching a "good eatin'" flounder off the pier.

Located just north of downtown on Bayshore Boulevard, south of , Weaver Park was acquired by the city in 2008 and opened Dec. 30.

"The fishermen were there within an hour," said Lanie Sheets, a Dunedin parks and recreation official.

The park's west side has about 400 feet of waterfront property, plus picnic benches and educational information displays on native sea life.

Directly across the street on the east side of Bayshore Boulevard is the remainder of the park along the Pinellas Trail. There are about 35 parking spots and more picnic tables.

"It's encouraging that the park is popular already, before the shelters, gazebos and restrooms are completed over the next two years," Sheets said. "People are coming to the park via bicycle or specifically to launch a kayak, or just use it as a starting-stopping point on the trail."

County, state and federal funds secured and developed the largely undeveloped property, per signage at the park.

An old yellow cottage now sits on the southeast corner and is home to a new bustling campus of the .

Saturday's grand opening might not excite the fishermen, who enjoy a tranquil setting in which to work. Bagpipers are planned to kick off the festivities at 3 p.m. A ribbon cutting ceremony with city and county officials is at 4 p.m., followed by a reggae band and food.

The event is free and open to all.

Melody Urso February 05, 2011 at 12:16 PM
When I moved to Dunedin 10 years ago and drove by that wonderful piece of land, I remember thinking that if I had Bill Gates' money I would buy that land and turn it into a park. Thank you to the City of Dunedin and all of our supporters of this project for making my wish come true. My dog Jessie and I have been walking to the park regularly to see the progress of the project and now, to enjoy this beautiful park. I love it! Melody Urso and Dog Jessie
Katie Dolac February 05, 2011 at 01:04 PM
That's so awesome, Melody! We may not have Bill Gates' fortune, but this wonderful little spot sure makes me feel like we're all pretty fortunate.
Maggy Graham February 05, 2011 at 04:34 PM
Melody, my sentiments exactly. I would drive past it so many times and see all those beautiful trees and just wish for an enlightened use of the property. Turns out the City of Dunedin IS enlightened. I don't know the story behind how this park happened. Kathryn, I would be interested in knowing that. Material for an article?
Katie Dolac February 05, 2011 at 04:43 PM
Indeed! We'll see what we can find out!
John P Mudri February 05, 2011 at 04:48 PM
Thank you to this beautiful city of Dunedin, our secret in Pinellas County- I live by the park and love it John and Dog Bogie
Mathew J. Eberius February 05, 2011 at 05:23 PM
It's a very interesting story, with a lot of cooperation from all sides - government and private. This was truly a community project, an awesome story indeed, Katie.
J.T. Capsas February 06, 2011 at 02:05 AM
Don't think the story is so interesting. There was nothing there, and the city got a bunch of grants to buy it from a rich guy.
michelle February 09, 2011 at 06:10 PM
i am trying to find some information on the brick rd that is located on weaver park. i have called everywhere but noone seem to know exaclty any history of this road, the only fact that i was able to finds was 1. 6-7 years ago there was a called for volunteers to help remove the concrete out of this rd 2. used to be called tropical oasis rd any onformation will be much appreciated my pone number is 352-279-3651
Mathew J. Eberius February 09, 2011 at 09:02 PM
Michelle, you may want to contact the Dunedin Parks & Recreation Department - they can point you in the right direction, as they were the developers of the parkland. The number for the Administration Office is 727-812-4531.


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