T.O. Fuller State Park - Memphis, TN - Tennessee State Parks

Welcome to T.O. Fuller State Park
T.O. Fuller State Park was the first state park open for African Americans east of the Mississippi River. A Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp in the area initiated construction of the park facilities in 1938. It was designated Shelby County Negro State Park in 1938 and was later changed to T.O. Fuller State Park in 1942 in honor of Dr. Thomas O. Fuller, a prominent African-American educator, pastor, politician, civic leader and author, who spent his life empowering and educating African Americans. Dr. Fuller served as principal of the Howe Institute, a precursor to Lemoyne-Owen College, for 27 years. The park is a place that protects and showcases unique natural habitat while offering a wide range of outdoor recreational assets – including a new Interpretive Nature and Education Center, hiking trails, playgrounds, an Olympic-size pool and splash pad, ball fields, basketball and tennis courts, and terrific gathering spaces for families, churches, organizations and groups. T. O. Fuller State Park works to preserve the park's CCC history and demonstrate how early park development fits within the context of the African American civil rights movement in Tennessee. The park also boasts a historical significance dating back even before its founding. During an excavation for a proposed swimming pool in 1940, CCC workers unearthed evidence of prehistoric village, opening the door to a lost and forgotten civilization. The site has since been developed as Chucalissa Indian Village and is operated by the University of Memphis. It includes a village, preserved archaeological excavations and a modern museum. The 1,138-acre park is located within the southern city limits of Memphis - seven miles from Graceland, 10 miles from the Memphis International airport and 15 miles from downtown. Although the park is close to the city, the wooded area of the park allows for a natural and serene setting. Its diverse terrain, from the Mississippi flood plains to the high and overshadowing bluff ridges, makes the area an ideal place for birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts. Hiking trails range from moderate to rugged. The Discovery Trail is a four-mile loop where visitors have the opportunity to see the Chucalissa Indian Village and Wetlands. Picnicking is also popular with 35 picnic tables and grills located throughout the park. The park has four shelters that can accommodate groups of 40 to 120 people. All shelters have grills, nearby bathroom facilities, picnic tables and electric outlets. Reservations are required and should be made well in advance. For guests looking for a place to swim during their stay, there is an Olympic-size pool centrally located in the main recreation area of the park. The pool is open from early summer through Labor Day. This rich historical significance, combined with unique biological diversity makes T.O. Fuller a special gem within the Tennessee State Park system.

Contact Info

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Amenities

Within Facility
SWIMMING
The pool opens for the 2017 season on Friday, May 26.
HOURS OF OPERATION
Wednesday - Friday: 1:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Satruday and Sunday: Noon to 6:00 PM
Monday and Tuesday: Closed (except for holiday weeks)
ADMISSION AND POOL PASSES
$5 per person, per day, ages four and older.
Camping guests pay half price.
Pool passes are available in the park office for $160 for 40 admissions.
GENERAL INFO
Small children must wear little swimmers in the pool. No cut-offs or t-shirts are allowed in the pool. Lifeguards are on duty. The pool is centrally located in the main recreation area of the park. The pool is open the Friday before Memorial Day through approximately, mid-August. The last day for this season is August 6, 2017.
POOL PARTIES
All pool parties must be cleared by the park manager with advance payment and a contract on file.

BIRDING
A new wildlife enhancement area is under development and will consist of floodplain wetlands, wildflower valleys, native grassy meadows, and upland ponds. Four miles of paved walking trails are open and the area already has attracted rare Black-bellied Whistling Ducks, nesting Black-necked Stilts. Lying in the heart of the Mississippi Flyway, the area is on its way to becoming a significant birding area for resident and migratory songbirds, shorebirds and raptors and wintering waterfowl. To learn more about birding at T.O. Fuller and nearby areas, click here.

HIKING
The Park has over eight miles of hiking trails ranging from easy to moderate.
Discovery Trail — 4.0 Miles — Natural — Moderate
The Discovery Trail is a 4 mile continuous loop with a number of scenic points of interest including Chucalissa Indian Village and the wetlands.
Day Use Trail — 0.5 Miles — Natural — Easy
Nature Enhancement Area - 4.0 Miles - Paved - Moderate

GROUP FACILITIES
T.O. Fuller - Meeting Room
Rates: $250 — $500
Taxes and fees are not included. Rates subject to change.
The Clubhouse at T.O. Fuller State Park is a popular venue for weddings, meetings, and reunions. The space seats 200 people. Folding tables and chairs and central air and heat are provided.
Reservations can be made by calling the park office.

CAMPING
Rates: $10.50 — $31.25
Taxes and fees are not included. Rates subject to change. $5 reservation fee per site is non-refundable.
The campground has many hardwood trees that provide plenty of shade. There are 45 campsites that are RV accessible with some sites accommodating up to 85 feet of RV space. Tent campers are also welcome. The campground has a picnic shelter, playground, bathhouse and laundry. Each campsite is equipped with a picnic table, lantern hanger, fire ring, grill, electrical and water hook-ups. There is a centralized dumping station near the entrance of the campground.
A bathhouse is centrally located and contains restroom facilities, coin laundry, and showers.
Reservations are accepted and stay limit is two weeks.

PAVILIONS
Rates: $40 — $150
Taxes and fees are not included. Rates subject to change.
T.O. Fuller State Park has 4 picnic shelters/pavilions that may be reserved for your next event or gathering. Depending on the shelter, the maximum capacity ranges from 40 to 120 people. The shelters are equipped with picnic tables, a grill and access to restrooms. Depending upon the shelter, access to a playground, tennis courts, sand volleyball court or basketball court are nearby.
Full day shelter reservations may be made online or by calling the park. If you are interested in reserving a shelter for less than a full day, please contact the park office for availability information.
Picnic shelters or pavilions may be reserved online up to one year in advance with a paid reservation fee. There is a $3.00 cancellation fee for picnic shelter or pavilion reservations cancelled 8 days or more in advance of the reserved date. Reservations cancelled 7 days or less in advance of the reserved date forfeit all paid fees.

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Location

Address
1500 W Mitchell Rd
State/Province
Zip Code
Latitude
35.06
Longitude
-90.12
Swap Start/End

Editor review

1 review
T.O. Fuller State Park
Overall rating
 
4.4
Campground Appeal
 
5.0
Customer Service
 
3.0
Planned Activities
 
3.0
Location
 
5.0
Amenities
 
5.0
Site Set-up
 
5.0
Cleanliness
 
5.0

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