By Lynda Jones
The Crockett City Council during its Monday, Jan. 11 meeting, approved a zoning change for a new business, held a public hearing and approved a plat for an existing business that reports rapid growth. All votes were unanimous. Precinct 3 Council Member Ernest Jackson was absent.
The approved zoning change will allow the site of Park Hill Farm to be used as a special events venue.
Larry Christopher recently sold the historic estate to the owners of Rings True & Event Venues (Rings True).
Dan Huggins, CEO and partner of Rings True, was present at the meeting.
Huggins explained to the council that the property will be a high-end events venue.
When Mayor Robert Meadows asked for clarification that the site will not include a Bed & Breakfast, Huggins confirmed that overnight stays will only be available to persons renting the entire venue.
For example, he explained, if a wedding party rents the entire ranch they will be able to include overnight stays.
After the meeting, Huggins said they plan to be open by June, in time for the wedding season. They already have a website (www.ringstrueevents.com) that describes the venue, "Nestled deep in the heart of the Davy Crockett National Forest in Houston County, this 100-acre event venue is in the historic town of Crockett."
The new owners foresee the property as a perfect place for weddings, corporate events, family reunions, Quinceanera celebrations and more.
Huggins and his wife, Kim, previously lived in Abilene for 40 years. Their partners, Laura and Robert Norris of Houston, also were present at the meeting.
Meadows noted that the city's Planning and Zoning earlier approved the zoning change and recommended that council do the same.
Council members extended a warm welcome to the owners of the new business.
Also related to the local economy, the council held brief public hearing regarding plat approval on a tract of land behind Los Ranchos, on Loop 304. No one spoke against the proposal.
Meadows explained that Los Ranchos is expanding, and with the recent property purchase the owner plans to add more parking behind the Sonic Drive-In.
The mayor added that the proposed plat approval came with the blessings of the Planning and Zoning Commission, which already gave their vote of approval.
As the council voted to approve the plat, members congratulated owner Emilio Estrada on his successful business.
The council also approved the resolution calling for the May election of council members in Precincts 3, 4 and 5, and approved a joint election agreement between the Crockett ISD and the City of Crockett.
Meadows explained the two actions were normal business items required before an election.