JP Coleman State Park
Guide

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Introduction

JP Coleman State Park rests in the town of Iuka, Mississippi. Iuka was built on the site of a Chickasaw Indian village. The name "Iuka" comes from the name of one of the chiefs of the village.

Settlers arrived in Iuka in 1957 with the Memphis and Charleston Railroad. Before the American Civil War, the town thrived and boasted an all-female college, a boys' military academy, and a fine hotel. The Civil War brought widespread devastation to the area. The 1862 Battle of Iuka resulted in 1200-1500 killed or wounded.

The town of Iuka did not return to prosperity for many years. The building of Pickwick Landing Dam and Pickwick Lake by the Tennessee Valley Authority brought renewed spirit to the area.

Perched on a rocky bluff overlooking the Tennessee River, J.P. Coleman State Park offers the finest in all types of water sports. Guests to the area enjoy sailing, swimming, skiing, and fishing in the sparkling waters of Pickwick Lake. Guests often enjoy camping and exploring in the tranquil untamed forest along the banks of the Tennessee River.

JP Coleman Park, located on the Tennessee River just north of Iuka, maintains a playground, campsites, a lodge, a marina.

The J.P. Coleman State Park Campground offers guest a wide variety in lodging options with primitive camping, 69 RV parking pads, 23 cabins and a 19-unit motel. For RV campers, a dump station is onsite. Guests will also discover picnic shelters, rest rooms and a laundry facility at their disposal. Whether along the water’s edge or perched upon rocky bluffs above, campsites offer guest a relaxing and tranquil space to enjoy the beauty of the water and forest around them.

RV Rentals in JP Coleman State Park

Transportation in JP Coleman State Park

Driving

The park is located at:

J.P. Coleman State Park

613 CR 321
Iuka, MS 38852

JP Coleman State Park is located 13 miles North of Iuka off Hwy 25. Guests will turn onto County Road 989; follow County Road 989 until it intersects County Road 321. Turn right. The entrance to the park is approximately one mile.

The park is located approximately:

105 miles from Memphis, 72 miles from Tupelo, and 136 miles from Columbus.

Parking

Guests will find parking near the boat launch.

Public Transport

No public transportation is available within the park.

Campgrounds and parking in JP Coleman State Park

Campsites in JP Coleman State Park

Reservations camping

JP Coleman State Park Campground

JP Coleman State Park offers guests several lodging options. The park offers 69 RV campsites, 9 primitive camping sites, 20 cabins (duplex style), 3 cottages, 16 motel rooms, and 3 townhouses. Facilities are located with views of Pickwick Lake.

Guests will find 69 paved campsites for RV camping. Campsites feature picnic tables, grills, electrical, water, and sewage hookups. Eleven campsites are waterfront and are considered premium sites. Most campsites are located in a wooded area with stunning views of water or lovely adjacent forested hillsides.
Guests may make advanced reservations up to 24 months prior to their anticipated adventure. JP Coleman State Park provides guests the rate opportunity to reserve some campsites by the month.
Guests will find two bathhouses with restrooms and hot showers. The park also provides a sewage dump station is conveniently located for those camping in the park.
A laundry facility is available for park campers at the lower campground bathhouse.
J.P. Coleman State Park also offers nine tent camping sites overlooking Indian Creek. Water is not available on these sites and there is no picnic table or grill provided. A bathhouse located in the developed campground is within walking distance of the primitive area. All primitive sites are walk-up only.

Quiet hours are observed from10pm to 6 am. Check for cabins is 3pm Check out 11 am. No pets allowed in cabins. Occupancy of cabin is limited to capacity. Check for camp sites is 4 pm Check out 2pm. Pets allowed on 6 ft. leash in campground. Fire rings are available. Generators are not allowed. Occupancy is limited to a maximum of 8 people per site.

First-come first-served

Alternate camping

Seasonal activities in JP Coleman State Park

In-Season

Mineral Springs Park

Guests to JP Coleman State Park will quickly discover that Mississippi is a land of hidden gems. One such is Mineral Springs Park in nearby Iuka, MS. The park has an interesting past based part in history and part in myth. The history of the park surrounds six natural springs located here.

According to legend, Chickasaw Chief Iuka experienced a miraculous recovery after drinking from the natural springs. News of this miracle traveled quickly and soon a town sprang up around the heeling waters. The town of Iuka flourished and succeeded in attracting the Memphis and Charleston Railroad.

In the early 1840s, Mineral Springs Park was established. The park became increasingly popular as widespread Yellow Fever epidemic seemed to miraculously pass over Iuka. The towns ability to come unscathed through this epidemic was believed to be directly linked to the mineral springs.

Over the next few decades, wealthy visitors flocked to the park. Pavilions were built over the springs allowing visitors to comfortably access the water. In 1904, Iuka’s mineral water grew in fame when a panel of judges at the St. Louis World’s Fair named it the “best water in the United States.”

Fishing

JP Coleman State Park is home to Pickwick Lake. Guests will find the 47,500-acres lake ideal for outdoor activities. Guests to the park enjoy fresh water fishing, boating, and water sports. Pickwick Lake is brimming with crappie, bream, catfish, walleye, and most species of bass. Guests wishing to fish may use the boat ramp and parking near the main office. JP Coleman Park staff coordinate fishing tournaments throughout the year. Guests are most likely to catch bass, crappie and catfish. However, many other fish are available seasonally.

Guests 16-65 are required to have a Mississippi fishing license. These may be purchased at the park office (cash only). For fishing licenses purposes please keep in mind Pickwick Lake spans portions of three states.

Swimming

JP Coleman Park maintains a 15 x 60 foot swimming pool as well as a kiddy pool for guests interested in cooling off with a swim. Both pools are open from Memorial Day through Labor Day 10:00 A.M to 6:00 P.M. The pool is closed Monday and Tuesday of each week, unless a holiday falls on one of these days.

Guests interested in more adventurous water sports may enjoy water skiing or jet skiing on Pickwick Lake. The park offers a boat launching ramp for guests interested in boating, jet skiing, and water skiing.

Off-Season

The Apron Museum

Guests with an interest in sewing, antique textiles, and/or quirky collections will want to see the Apron Museum in nearby Iuka. This one-room museum is filled with aprons dating from Civil War times to the present. The museum offers aprons and other items for purchase as well as providing guest with a unique opportunity to see what fashionable cooks of by gone days wore in the kitchen. Walls of the museum are lined with a mere sliver of the overall collection. The owner and her assistant provide a wealth of information and fun. Aprons on display range from the beautiful, to the humorous. All of the aprons are interesting and functional. This is a place for apron enthusiasts of all ages. Guests should note that apron donations are accepted.

Geocaching

Guests with interest in geocaching will find several geocaches in the area surrounding JP Coleman State Park. For guests new to the adventure of geocaching, geocaching is a low-cost technology aided treasure hunt. Guests can use handheld GPS systems or their cell phones to help them locate caches that generally contain small tradable items. Guests will find that children are often very easily engaged in this activity.

Old Tishomingo County Courthouse

Located in nearby Iuka, the Old Tishomingo County Courthouse is a striking example of Romanesque Architecture with Second Empire style influences. The courthouse is the reason why Iuka is referred to as the “Marriage Capital.” Over 44,000 marriage licenses were issued in the years when Mississippi required no three-day waiting period.

Guests will find the courtroom on the second floor is much as it was when John M. Stone, Mississippi’s longest serving Governor, supervised its construction. The courthouse, built in 1870, is on the National Register of Historic Places. The Old Tishomingo County Courthouse is strategically situated in Iuka only a few miles from the AL and TN borders on Hwy 72 between Huntsville and Memphis. Guests to the area can easily include the courthouse in their adventure of historic sites as it is situated only minutes away from the Tennessee River and Natchez Trace.

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