Hill Country Christmas Lighting Trail
Fredericksburg's Market Square
photo courtesy Fredericksburg CVB
photographer: Marc Bennett
Sure you can celebrate 12 days of Christmas, but
why not do it up in a Texas-sized way with a whole month of festivities?
That's an easy wish to fill thanks to the Hill Country Christmas
Lighting Trail, one of the largest holiday events in the state,
stretching north from San Antonio to encompass many of the communities
of this region. Shops, historic sites, courthouses, and churches
welcome travelers with a show of spectacular lights and seasonal
For more information: 888-842-8080, www.visitboerne.org
Top Choice: Weihnachts Fest Parade, a colorful night
parade that illuminates the Historic District. Santa and Mrs. Claus
officially kick off the start of the season at the end of the parade
at the Main Plaza Gazebo. During the night parade, many shops along
the restored Hauptstrasse (Main Street) remain open extended hours.
For a Texas Touch: visit the Cowboy Christmas at Enchanted
Springs Ranch. This ranch, home to a period Western town, offers
hayrides and caroling plus shows and even a Cowboy Santa.
For more information: 512-756-4297, www.BURNETCHAMBER.org
Top Choice: The first two weekends of December transform
Burnet into Bethlehem. The Main Street Bethlehem celebration in
the town's historic district, located at Washington Street (one
block south of Highway 29) and Vanderveer Street. Expect big crowds
for this very popular event where you and your family can walk through
the gates of Bethlehem and see costumed townspeople
bartering at the city market, baking bread, and tending their camels,
donkeys, and other animals. A live nativity scene is presented at
the street's exit.
For a Texas Touch: Christmas Past at Ft. Croghan.
The citys historic fort takes travelers back to the holidays
of 1849. Cedar wreaths decorate the gates and welcome visitors to
the homesteads where costumed reenactors decorate their cabins,
craft pioneer ornaments, and welcome visitors with refreshments
served by frontier fireplaces.
For more information: 512-858-4740, www.drippingspringstx.org
Top choice: Christmas on Mercer will celebrate
with extended hours at the shops along Mercer Street as well as
live entertainment and Santa.
For more information: 888-997-3600, www.fredericksburg-texas.com
Top Choice: The fun kicks off with a lighted night
Christmas parade launching Weihnachten in Fredericksburg,
a three-day Christmas festival and market. Weihnachten includes
a Christmas tree forest filled with decorated trees, each with its
own special theme. Old-fashioned gingerbread houses also are on
display throughout the event. On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights,
live entertainment fills the air while shoppers stroll the Christmas
market. Authentic German foods, from lebkuchen (honey cakes) to
pfeffernusse (peppernuts) tempt holiday visitors at the event and
at several local bakeries. Dont missEisbahn in
Fredericksburg, an outdoor ice skating rink.
For a Texas Touch: The Holiday Wine Trail gives visitors
a chance to tour local wineries and enjoy the spirit of the season.
For more information: 325-648-3619, www.goldthwaite.biz
Top Choice: Shop at the Arts and Crafts Festival at
the Mills County Civic Center, showcasing local artisans.
For more information: 830-868-7684, www.lbjcountry.com
Top Choice: The starsor the Christmas lightsat
night are bright in Johnson City! Blanco County Courthouse is aglow
with over 100,000 lights and the Pedernales Electrical Co-Op Headquarters,
which can't be missed thanks to its one million light display.
For a Texas Touch: A Timeless Christmas in Johnson
City including a lamplight tour of the LBJ Boyhood Home as
well as an 1860 Christmas at the nearby historic Johnson Settlement.
For more information: 325-247-5354, www.llanochamber.org
Top choice: Pathway of Arches lighting
display at the Llano River Park
For more information: 800-759-8178, www.marblefalls.org
Top choice: Christmas Walkway of Light on the banks
of Lake Marble Falls in Lakeside Park . Over a million lights light
a self-guided walk with over 130 light sculptures and a spectacular
light tunnel made up of over 12,000 clear lights.
For more information: 800-572-2626, www.nbjumpin.com
Top choice: Old Gruene Christmas Market Days Festival
includes a lighting ceremony and plenty of arts and crafts.
For more information: 830-825-3233
Top choice: enjoy the historic buildings outlined
in tiny lights including an 1876 church and 1874 stagecoach inn.
For more information: 512-847-2201, www.wimberley.org
Top choice: EmilyAnn Theatre's Trail of Lights, warmed
by a smoldering Yule log
For More Information:
For more on the trail, including a map with
the community locations, visit www.tex-fest.com or call 1-866-TEX-FEST for the free brochure.