Easter Sunrise Services on The Flower Mound will be extra special this year. The Summit Club of Flower Mound, along with the Women of Flower Mound, has hosted this event since 1974.
The Summit Club is making new replica crosses. The previous crosses needed replacement and members wanted a more realistic experience for the sunrise service.
Claudio Forest, president of Summit Club, researched and drew plans to construct the crosses. "While no one knows exact, the crosses are as close as the research indicates,” Forest said.
The main cross is 14 feet tall the smaller crosses are 10 feet tall. They are made of milled red cedar, but are hand carved to replicate how the Roman Crosses were made. New sleeves to hold the crosses in the Mound are being installed as well. The new cross design is expected to last decades.
The first sunrise service on The Mound was held when Edward Marcus owned The Mound in the early 1970s. Marcus told Bob Rheudasil that The Flower Mound would be a perfect setting for an Easter Sunrise Service. Rheudasil and some ranch hands made crosses for the first sunrise service in 1971. The Summit Club and Women of Flower Mound have continued the tradition since.
Sunrise services are rotated between local Churches each year. Rockpoint Church is conducting the service this year. Rotating churches brings new people to the Mound every year and helps grow the event. Recent years have turned out up to 1,400 people.
Services this year start at 6:30 a.m., and it is suggested that attendees arrive at 6:15 a.m. Many bring lawn chairs. Parking is in the Tom Thumb parking lot west of The Mound, and The Women of Flower Mound provide coffee and donuts.
About The Flower Mound
The Flower Mound was created some 66 to 144 million years ago during the Cretaceous Period. Once the oceans receded from this region, The Mound towered some 50 feet above the adjoining Blackland Prairie.
Although undistinguishable today, The Mound sits on Long Prairie, which was a one mile wide by four miles long prairie amidst the Cross Timbers. Early travelers emerged from fighting their way through the thick brush of the Cross Timbers onto Long Prairie, with The Mound rising above. Many weary travelers rested at, camped on and surveyed the landscape from The Mound.
Myths abound about The Flower Mound including that it was built by an ancient culture or is an Indian burial mound. Edward Marcus had several locations on the Mound excavated by SMU archeologist, but no Indian remains were found.
Shards of pottery dated 700 AD were found at the base of The Mound by Sweetie Bowman in the 1970s. Wichita Indians were the primary Native Americans in Flower Mound, but several other tribes lived in the area as well.
The Mound was sacred for the Wichita Indians and possibly other tribes. Wichita’s did bury their dead in sacred ground and often in high ground. The Mound could be a resting place for some Native Americans.
Another myth is that everything built on the Mound mysteriously blows away. Early Flower Mound Presbyterians are rumored to have started building their first church on the Mound. The structure allegedly blew away and the present location east of the Mound was then selected. Other stories tell of homes and structures being blown off the Mound.
Historic records don’t substantiate structures being blown off The Mound. It stands to reason that it is possible. The Mound is about the windiest places in Flower Mound.
The very first recorded religious sermon in Denton County was on a Sunday morning in May of 1841, somewhere on Long Prairie. Most likely, it was on the Flower Mound. John Denton, namesake to Denton County and the City of Denton, presided over a morning sermon to Texas Rangers that were in pursuit of hostile Indians who were raiding neighboring settlers.
The Mound has had several owners, starting with John Wiswell in 1844. Subsequent owners were George Beavers, Ray Lester, Edward Marcus, Flower Mound New Town and Bellamah Community Development.
Bellamah deeded the Mound to the Flower Mound Foundation on July 25, 1983. The foundation’s purpose is to keep the original character of the site and to promote educational, scientific and historical interests.
The Mound exists today as it did when the first pioneers first saw it. The Mound has never had a plow in it. The same Bluestem, Indian Grass, Switch Grass and Wildflowers grow there as they did hundreds of years ago, when Buffalo and Antelope grazed them. It is one of the last remaining pieces of unaltered Blackland Prairie.
Over 400 varieties of plants and flowers grow on the Mound. Alton Bowman is author of” The Flower Mound, Flower Mound, Texas: A History and Field Guide to the Flowers and Grasses.”
The Flower Mound Foundation sells this book for $20 to help pay for maintenance of The Flower
Mark Glover lives in Flower Mound with his wife Penny Rheudasil Glover. Mark is the principal of iMark Realty Advisors and
helps clients buy, sell, lease, develop and invest in commercial real estate. Mark is a Summit Club Member, Flower Mound Foundation Board Member, and involved in several local organizations. Mark also enjoys writing about local history. You can email Mark or call him at 214-550-5017.