The excellent Balloons Over Horseshoe Bay Resort event featured about 20 colorful hot air balloons, plus helicopter rides, sky divers, great food and music, kids activities, magic shows, animal shows, a boat display and more on the high ground overlooking Horseshoe Bay’s new business district and Lake LBJ. It was the biggest event of an Easter weekend that also featured Children’s Day in Marble Falls, plus many Easter Egg Hunts and special church services around the Highland Lakes.
It seems like no matter how often I go through my voice mails, notes and emails, I find that I’ve missed some “Upcoming Events” in my article. To facilitate the printing process, I start with the first and last two pages each week, then do the middle four pages before I get to page 3 sometime on Wednesday evening (on a bad week, it’s more like early Thursday morning). That’s why the things I missed will often appear in Scatterthought; this week is a good example!
During the first two hectic weeks of April, I overlooked a town hall meeting with Commissioner Mike Sandoval (held on Tuesday night). On Wednesday afternoon, I noticed a Facebook message reporting on the meeting which included a discussion of a “Limited Countywide Residential Bulk Collection” scheduled for this Saturday morning (8 to noon). Llano County residents (and KMUD customers from Burnet County) can bring tires, furniture, mattresses, etc. to the Llano County Annex in Buchanan Dam. I should have reported this a little earlier.
Also on Saturday, the Hill Country Humane Society will hold another “Show and Shine” at Ace Hardware in Horseshoe Bay (11 a.m. to 1 p.m.) In addition to the lovable rescue animals, they will be offering microchipping at $25 and nail trimming at $5. Bring your pets and take advantage of this special offer. For more information call 512-793-5463.
Later that same day, Phillip Smith will bring his “St. Paul Speaks” performance to Hill Country Fellowship in Burnet at 5:45. Doors open at 5:15 for fellowship and refreshments.
Last Friday, I was telling some of my friends that I just might die of exhaustion sometime Saturday evening. It didn’t happen; I had a wonderful weekend, including a visit from my daughter and son-in-law from Baton Rouge, who wanted to “see the Bluebonnet Festival and eat at Cooper’s.” We accomplished those missions, and they graciously allowed me to stop along the way and take pictures of some area events. I missed some, of course, but I got a lot more pictures than I can fit in this paper. If you have the opportunity, please look at my “Highland Lakes Weekly” Facebook page.
One of the reasons I got so tired last week was that Marble Falls keeps growing and making changes. I finished last week’s paper around 8 a.m., but instead of getting my usual four hours of sleep before starting deliveries, I had to attend the Grand Opening at the beautiful new Bealls store. The next morning, I had to start my Friday deliveries early so I could attend the Ground-Breaking for the new H.E.B. Both those stores represent huge upgrades for area shoppers.
Then there was the Bluebonnet Festival’s Pet Parade and three Friday night concerts that I couldn’t miss before my guests arrived around 1 a.m. It was well after 2 a.m. before I got to sleep, and Saturday started quite early. I pared down my Saturday itinerary, attended the afternoon show of the Llano Country Opry, and was able to get a short nap while my guests went swimming at the Slab, before heading off to the street dance in Burnet.
We are definitely in the “busy season” here in the Highland Lakes area, and I wasn’t able to cover anything this week the way I would have liked to. On the other hand, I would have needed at least 32 pages to fit everything into the paper, and that is more than I can handle. So I hope you’ll enjoy what I have in this week’s paper and forgive me for what I don’t have.
This weekend will be dominated by Burnet’s wonderful Bluebonnet Festival. Even without the Air Show (which will be in September again this year), this festival is probably the best community festival in the Texas Hill Country. I’m hoping to give it quite a bit of space in next week’s paper, but you really need to experience it for yourself. I hope to see you there!
Among the many activities, there are a few that seem to go mostly unnoticed. One is the wildflower display in the back room of the library (you go in the Main Street side door) on Friday afternoon and during the day on Saturday. You can learn a lot about the flowers that bring the Hill Country to life each spring; it’s well worth seeing.
Another is the Rubber Ducky Race, over on Hamilton Creek. It’s a fun event, and you can win some great prizes; but more importantly, it raises money for Highland Lakes Literacy. It happens shortly after the Grand Parade, just about two blocks west of the square; you can buy tickets there between 10 and noon on Saturday, or get them ahead of time from any HLL member.
What a weekend! And it’s just the beginning of an action-packed spring season. This coming week will pose another challenge to me and my trusty Ford Focus, with weekend-long events in both Marble Falls (Paint the Town) and Llano (Fiddle Fest), plus a multitude of other activities in several other towns. If we could somehow be in Bertram and Llano at the same time on Friday night, it would make life easier. I definitely want to be at the Air Fiddle contest at the Badu House in Llano, but I also want to see Jake Penrod at the Globe Theatre in Bertram. I’ll be making tough choices all weekend.
One of the biggest events last weekend was the Fishing Tournament arranged by the VFD Auxiliary in Sunrise Beach. It looked like a lot of well-organized fun, and a big success. I congratulate the ladies responsible; especially those who showed up at 5:30 a.m. on a cold, dark morning! I also was impressed to see young people from the Boys & Girls Club holding a party at The Oaks Nursing Home in Burnet. Folks young and old seemed to be really enjoying themselves.
It’s not just fun events that have been impressing me lately; there are lots of businesses starting and growing these days around the Highland Lakes. One of them that is especially encouraging to me is The Antlers Hotel and surrounding enterprises; I saw on Facebook that owners Drew Gerencer and Rick Gregory had a record-setting week during Spring Break, and they are holding a Grand Opening and ribbon-cutting this Saturday at 1 p.m. for the new Club Car Bar addition to the Grand Central Café. That cluster of businesses in the historic heart of Kingsland is very important to Kingsland’s future, and I’m delighted to see them doing well.
It didn’t take long for The Llano News to get back to business after (actually, during) the big week-long centennial celebration at the beginning of June, 1956. While there WERE two centennial-related items at the top of the front page, it was dominated by current events.
First the centennial news. A photo showed three “modern” young couples in “old-fashioned” garb. They were Mr. and Mrs. Herman Raesener Jr., Mr. and Mrs. Raymond Winkel, and Mr. and Mrs. R.V. Derrick. An article next to the photo reported that Ann Hasse had been named Queen of the Llano County Centennial festivities.
But despite the fact that the paper came out on Thursday of the big week, a backlog of more down-to-earth news filled most of the front page. The biggest story was that a site had been chosen for the new hospital. Architect John Winn Scott, of Austin, met with the city council and the county commissioners to choose from three “finalist” sites; the one they selected was a city block belonging to Mrs. Orville Buttery. It had the benefits of already-present utilities and paved streets on two sides; it also was the closest to a main highway and to the courthouse. The county paid Mrs. Buttery $7,000.
I can’t remember a time in my life when I literally “stopped to smell the roses,” but I guess last Saturday was my equivalent. When I had a few extra minutes between events, I stopped to take pictures of the bluebonnets. I know I’m not the only one who did it, but I think I stopped at more places, and took more pictures, than most of my fellow travelers; if you look on the Highland Lakes Weekly Facebook page (and you’ll have to scroll down, because I’ve posted several albums since) you can see nearly a hundred of my personal favorites. And for those who don’t have time to follow in my tire tracks, these photos are something you can share with friends who live up in the frozen north (or anywhere else). I don’t copyright my pictures or demand that you give me any credit; I’m just honored that some people like them.
Apparently some people DO like them; as of Wednesday evening, Facebook tells me that I’ve “Reached” 4,924 people and had 24,396 “Post Engagements.” I don’t know exactly what those numbers mean, but they are bigger than usual, so I like them.
That’s not to say that bigger is always better. I also like the “Shop Small” event that Kingsland area businesses are planning for this Saturday at the First Baptist Church (9 a.m. to 2 p.m.) They expect to have a good selection of gifts, jewelry, clothing, makeup, home décor, food and more.
That’s just one of many events scheduled for this weekend. I think the Spring season is in high gear, and every weekend in April will definitely be busy. The Fiddle Fest in Llano and the “Paint the Town” event in Marble Falls will be the biggest of many events around April 1, then the Bluebonnet Festival in Burnet will dominate the second weekend. Easter is on the third weekend this April, and the Crawfish Open will be the biggest event the weekend after. I won’t have a shortage of photo ops any time soon.
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