As soon as he started his new gig at Oakdale Park, Jared Freels, park supervisor, dove head first into his responsibilities.
The Paluxy River Fall Bluegrass Festival was held at the city-owned property Thursday-Saturday filling RV spots with music-hungry visitors and the air with the twang of true American roots music.
"My first festival was a success," Freels said. "It definitely gave me a chance to get my feet into the water, and I feel like it's going well."
His second weekend on the job will sound just as sweet as the park plays host to GospelGrass, a family-friendly event welcoming about a dozen bluegrass/gospel acts Friday-Sunday.
In the midst of planning, Freels sat down with the Reporter and answered a few questions about the road to Oakdale and what his new job entails.
1 - Where did you come from?
I was previously living in Belton. I obtained my undergraduate degree in exercise and sports science and masters in exercise science from the University of Mary Hardin Baylor. I was there for almost seven years. I grew up in Godley and graduated from Godley High School in 2005.
2 - How did you find out about the opening at Oakdale? Glen Rose?
I saw the job listing online through the Texas Municipal League and got an interview about six weeks later. I was already familiar with Glen Rose. When I was in middle school and high school, I came out to Dinosaur Valley State Park. I also attended The Plunge at this pool, so I do have some history with and memories of the park.
3 - How do you view your role at Oakdale?
I am here to oversee the park and get it popping. Oakdale has a lot to offer - a rich history as well as recent renovations and upgrades. I want to see it grow, become a true asset. I want to bring in more events that appeal to the local community as well as visitors. I would like to see some new events that cater to a younger group and others that welcome more visitors. I would like monthly events in the summertime and the park RV spots to be full throughout the year. Oakdale has a great atmosphere and I really look forward to seeing it operating at its full potential. I understand it will be a building process and it won't happen over night, but I do expect it to happen over time.