Cooper, Texas – Step away from the daily grind and embrace the love of nature at Cooper Lake State Park this February. Located in the heart of Northeast Texas, this natural gem offers a serene retreat for those yearning to recharge in the great outdoors. Cooper Lake State Park is your gateway to exploration, whether you’re seeking to break free from the screen’s glare, work stressors, and the strain of city life or just eager for an adventure. With two unique parks encompassing over 3000+ acres of parklands and a 20,000-acre lake, you can engage in various activities designed to rejuvenate body, mind, and spirit. It’s the perfect spot for families and groups to gather, explore, and create lasting memories amidst nature’s backdrop.
Spending time outdoors, especially in the serene and natural settings of places like Cooper Lake State Park, has profound health and wellness benefits. Immersing oneself in nature is a breath of fresh air and a vital contributor to physical and mental health. Research has consistently shown that outdoor activities can significantly reduce stress, enhance problem-solving, and improve mood and overall mental well-being. The natural sunlight, fresh air, and physical movement involved in exploring the outdoors boost energy levels, improve sleep, and increase vitamin D synthesis, essential for bone health and immune function. Moreover, the tranquil surroundings and scenic beauty of natural landscapes promote mindfulness and a sense of peace, helping individuals to disconnect from the digital world and the stresses of daily life. By participating in Cooper Lake State Park programs, visitors engage in enjoyable recreational activities and learn and invest in their long-term health and wellness, fostering a deeper connection with nature and themselves.
In February 2024, Cooper Lake State Park will host a series of engaging programs at Doctors Creek and South Sulphur Units, designed to connect visitors with the natural world and inspire creativity. At Doctors Creek, the month kicks off on February 3 with an early morning “Winter Birds of Cooper Lake State Park” walk, where enthusiasts can explore the shoreline and surrounding areas in search of varied bird species. The following week, on February 9, the night sky will take center stage with a “Stargazing” event, complete with telescopes for planet viewing. The exploration continues on February 10 with the “Skins and Skulls” program, offering a closer look at local wildlife. On February 17, a “Guided Hike” will reveal the Park’s natural wonders. Wrapping up the month on February 24, “Art in the Park” invites budding artists to capture the beauty of the upcoming eclipse with all supplies provided.
Over at South Sulphur, bird watchers can gather on February 3 for a “Winter Birds” walk, this time exploring the area around Heron Harbor. Archery enthusiasts, both novices and experienced, are invited to join “Archery 101” on February 10, with pre-registration required for this limited-space event. Another “Guided Hike” is scheduled for February 17, promising more opportunities to immerse in the Park’s natural beauty. The month concludes on February 24 with another “Art in the Park” session, once again focusing on the upcoming eclipse and providing a creative outlet for all participants.
We have thoughtfully designed each event to encourage outdoor exploration and appreciation, offering something for everyone, from avid birders and stargazers to artists and hikers of all skill levels. We remind visitors to bring binoculars where applicable and dress appropriately for the quite variable February weather, ensuring a comfortable and enriching experience in the great outdoors.
All programs are free with your entrance permit. For more information on this or other events and programs at Cooper Lake State Park, please visit our Texas Parks and Wildlife Department website and also like our Facebook pages (Cooper Lake State Park – South Sulphur 903-945-5256 and Cooper Lake State Park – Doctors Creek 903-395-3100).
Saturday, February 3 – DC
Winter Birds of Cooper Lake State Park – 8:30 am. Meet at the South Loop Trailhead next to the Pelican Point Day Use Area. We’ll walk around the shoreline, pocket prairie, and a day-use area looking for varied birds. Bring your binoculars, and dress for the weather.
Friday, February 9 – DC
Stargazing – 7:00 pm – Meet at the Pelican Point Day Use Parking Lot. Join us as we explore the night sky. We’ll have telescopes out for viewing a planet or two. Bring your binoculars, and dress for the weather.
Saturday, February 10 – DC
Skins and Skulls – 2:30 pm Meet at Doctors Creek Headquarters – Get an inside look at some local animals. Join us for a come-and-go program featuring the mammals of the Park.
Saturday, February 17 – DC
Guided Hike – 10:00 am – Meet at the South Loop trailhead next to the Pelican Point Day Use Area – Join us on a guided hike to see the wonders of nature! Dress for the weather.
Saturday, February 24 —DC
Art in the Park – 10:00 am. Meet at Pelican Point Pavilion –
Calling all artists! The upcoming eclipse is our focus this month. We provide all art supplies.
Saturday, February 3 – SS
Winter Birds of Cooper Lake State Park – 11:00 am. Meet at Heron Harbor Day Use Area. We’ll walk around the shoreline, grassy field, and a day-use area looking for varied birds. Bring your binoculars, and dress for the weather.
Saturday, February 10 – SS
Archery 101: 9:30 am – 11:30 am. Meet at Buggy Whip Restroom. Registration is required, but the program is limited to 12 participants.
No experience is needed. Ages 10 and up. All equipment provided.
Reserve your spot by calling 903-945-5256 or emailing Alicia O’Connor Alicia.O’Connor@tpwd.texas.gov.
Saturday, February 17 — SS
Guided Hike – 1:30 pm Meet at Buggy Whip Equestrian trailhead – Join us on a guided hike to see the wonders of nature! Dress for the weather.
Saturday, February 24 – SS
Art in the Park – 1:30 pm Meet at Gulls Bluff Pavilion – Calling all artists! The upcoming eclipse is our focus this month. All art supplies provided.