Volente residents face uncertainty as roads surrounding city close, Beachside Billy’s/Volente Beach opens doors to feed locals caught up in flood preparations

Water is up to the top of the patio umbrellas and covers the patio at Beachside Billy’s in Volente. LESLEE BASSMAN

By LESLEE BASSMAN, Four Points News

Only a little over two years into owning Volente Beach Resort and Waterpark, 15107 FM 2769 Leander, Glenlake residents Kara and Adam Weedman are working to salvage as much as they can from their waterpark on Lake Travis. For now a portion of their rides, beach, patios, grounds and pavilions are under water due to recent flood conditions.

“It’s been a slow rise [of lake water] even when they had the Llano flood,” Kara Weedman said. “Last week, we moved our boat dock in. Then, it was two days ago, when (the water) was really coming downstream, when they had the major floods. That was just the first step and then, within two hours, you started to see the beach disappear.”

Although staff emptied out the equipment  in the facility’s pool bar yesterday, the owners opened up their doors yesterday and today for local diners to enjoy a meal at half-price, relax and take a break from packing up their belongings to move to higher ground.

“So they opened up at 1 p.m. and were serving all meals at half price, mainly for the workers who were here helping move stuff, the people who didn’t live here but drove in to relocate all of this stuff,” Volente Mayor Ken Beck said of Beachside Billy’s restaurant. “When the community started hearing about it, they started driving over there too and the restaurant filled up very quickly.”

He said people have been working 24-38 hours straight to help alleviate some of the effects of the flood as much as possible.  The restaurant opened at 2 p.m. today as well to serve meals to the community and those helping its residents.

Marina residents are evacuating as waters rise in Volente on Oct. 18. LESLEE BASSMAN

Bill Gauspohl, general manager at AC VIP Marina in Volente, 16107 FM 2769, Leander, said he and his crew have been working nonstop to take precautions in light of the flooded conditions.

“For awhile we were averaging a couple of feet per hour and it’s slowed down just a little bit but we have to keep the marina coming up so that nothing breaks,” he said.

Signage at Highland Lakes Marina in Volente is underwater as flood waters rise. LESLEE BASSMAN

Nanette Martin, the manager of Highland Lakes Marina, was frantically packing up her belongings to evacuate her lakeside home. She said the marina was already taken care of as best as possible.

“This is the second time I’ve seen [the water so high] since I’ve been here since 2004,” she said. “And when 2007 came, the water came all the way to myr rock bed but this time it’s actually going to come into my house.”

Restaurant Shack 512, 8714 Lime Creek Road, was underwater up to its roofline.

Volente Mayor Ken Beck said he was proud of how the community has united under the pressure of the current flood conditions. However, with road closures surrounding the gateways to Volente—RM 2769 and Bullick Hollow Road—residents’ access to their homes may be limited since, as of today, only Lime Creek Road remains open. And that roadway has flood gates, indicating it may close under unfavorable conditions.

“Everybody is kind of looking at the water and saying, ‘my God, how far is it going to come up,’” Beck said. “If it rains out west like it’s forecasting in the Hill Country, well, the water is going to keep going up.”

All that is visible from Volente restaurant Shack 512 today is its roofline. LESLEE BASSMAN