Actors posed for this picture before taking their places in the Llano County Community Center’s terrifying Haunted House, scheduled this year for Saturdays, October 22 & 29, and Monday, October 31. There are several other Haunted Houses and many Halloween events around the Highland Lakes area; you’ll find some of them (and other events) in the “Upcoming Events” article beginning on page 2.
Oops! I got my signals crossed last week, and labeled the “Showcase Builders” entry in the Parade Home Tour as the work of “The Carver Group.” I visited both homes to take pictures of my own last Saturday; I think I’ve labeled them correctly this week (see page 5).
Also, I intended to include a picture from last year’s fundraiser for the Granite Shoals Christmas Outreach, but somehow left it out. That event, a BBQ by the Granite Shoals Police Officer’s Association and Granite Shoals Fire Auxiliary, will be held from 11 to 3 this Saturday at the former Ryder’s Dance Hall on Hwy 1431 in Granite Shoals. Take out will be available. Bring a new unwrapped toy for a free dessert. Live music will be provided by Danny Philpott and his band.
Area Masonic Lodges will be holding an Open House from 2 to 4 p.m. this Sunday (October 23).
My friend Charles Wendt (founder of Nailhead Spur in Llano, and the maker of many very artistic spurs) was interviewed by Jill Wagner of the Inspiration Network, and will be part of a show called “Metal Spurs, Hiking Boots, Backpacks”to be aired at 8:30 p.m. next Friday (October 28). I checked my Dish schedule, and found that I do get that station (#259), so I won’t have to wonder what to do next Friday night!
I don’t think I’ve had a totally “normal” week since I started my Highland Lakes Weekly adventure, but this week wasn’t even close. With six guests at my humble dwelling (two sisters, two sons, a daughter and a daughter-in-law came to celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving with me; I’ll explain that some other time), I wasn’t able to make my customary rounds. I missed several good events, and then a computer glitch combined with my inattention to delete most of my best pictures from Fort Croghan Day (one of the few events that I DID attend).
To atone for my picture deficit from the weekend, I decided to finish the history article I’d been working on and also to leave my computer four times for photo ops on deadline day. That put me way behind schedule, and I’m facing the prospect of working all night even as I type this column.
One of the Wednesday “photo ops” was something I would not have wanted to miss anyway. I knew Ramsey Clinton for quite a few years when I lived in Burnet, and he became a sort of hero to me. His grandson, Tres (who is now on the Burnet city council), was a good friend of my son, Danny, in high school. When I heard that a new street just south of Delaware Springs was to be named “Ramsey’s Way” in honor of my friend, I definitely wanted to be there. I only had room for one picture from the event (see page 11), but I put an album on Facebook, too (see the “Highland Lakes Weekly” page).
I met Sommer Floyd around the same time I met Ramsey Clinton, but she was much younger (probably just 10 or 12 years old) She has grown up and become a very good musician, with a lot of friends in Nashville. She’ll be holding a CD Release Party and Concert at 7 p.m. this Sunday (October 16) at Hill Country Fellowship in Burnet.
A story from The Llano News became a front-page story in the Burnet Bulletin on February 23, 1939. It was headlined “Landowners signing Highway 29 deeds,” and it told how the Llano County commissioners court had secured most of the right-of-way for the Llano County section of the new highway, including a 155-acre tract from the Fitzsimmons Land & Cattle Company. The land had been donated with the understanding that the county would build fences on both sides of the new road.
A very interesting ad that week told of a “19-cent Sale at the White-Way Grocery” (Hwy 66 &29). For just $.19, you could get your choice of: 6 bars laundry soap, 1 big Oxydol washing powders, Pure Pea Berry Coffee, 1 lb., 1 dozen Grape Fruit (large size), 1 lb. good bacon, 4 cans pork & beans (No. 2 Size), 1 Qt. Jelly (assorted flavors), 5 boxes table salt, 1 Qt. Mixed Pickles, 2 packages high-grade mince meat, 5 packages Macaroni, or 10 lbs spuds (best grade). “1 Bottle Catsup” cost only nine cents, but “10 Lbs. Sugar” cost 49 cents. A sack of Irish seed potatoes cost $2.49.
Another article contained the transcript of a telegram from Congressman Lyndon B. Johnson, saying: “Have secured Presidential approval WPA application to construct school building, clear landscape grounds, etc. Fairland-Toby consolidated school district. Federal funds $12,084.00. Operation project will be at the discretion State Administrator. Please advise all interested parties.”
An early copy of the Burnet Bulletin (published on September 5, 1874) was discovered at the residence of Mrs. S.E. Vaughan, in Bertram. The Bulletin quoted from a report in the Bertram Enterprise that said the old paper was addressed to Captain T.D. Vaughan, at Cedar Mills in southeastern Burnet County. It listed advertisers from Austin and Georgetown, plus the Austin and Lampasas Stage Line and Oatman & Phillips (attorneys?) in Llano. Burnet advertisers included J.K. Quinn, W. Smart, W.J. Moore, Jas. Rasmussen, R. Yoe, Joe Atkinson, Dr. G.J. McFarland, Whitaker & Cook (attorneys), and Johnson & Hammond (General Land and Collecting Agency).
October is getting off to a pretty good start! Not because business is better; just because I’m not quite so busy this week as I have been since Labor Day weekend. Of course it’s good to make a little extra money, and I’m very grateful for a month like September, but I won’t complain at all if things level off a little the next few weeks.
One of the reasons I’m feeling that way is because I have family coming to Kingsland this weekend. My Canadian-born sister started an almost-annual tradition (a few years back) of coming to Texas to celebrate the Canadian Thanksgiving holiday here in Texas. I think it was because all the other holidays were already spoken for (most of our family lives in Washington state or New Jersey), but it has been a pleasure to get some company every once in a while. I expect either six or seven family members here this weekend.
I’ll still be on the job Friday evening, and I hope to cover a few events this Saturday (Fort Croghan Day and the “Rifles, Racks and Deer Tracks” event at the Freedom Flyers hangar in Burnet come to mind), but you probably won’t be seeing me taking pictures anywhere on Sunday. I’ve been working on a history story, and I may have room for it in next week’s paper.
Just to illustrate how busy it’s been (and to offer an excuse for some “old news” in this week’s paper), I thought I’d mention that there was so much material last week that I “lost” a whole folder of pictures that I had taken the previous Sunday at Hill Country Fellowship and Candlelight Ranch. Not only did I not miss them at all, but I still had to leave out a bunch of pictures from the other days that I really wanted to include! Maybe I’ll get caught up before the Christmas rush gets here.
If you are reading this, I’ve survived another really busy month. This time, after taking a vacation at the end of July and having a remarkably good August (the rain helped a lot; not only canceling events but keeping the temperature lower and putting most people – including me – in a better mood), I was better able to handle the heat and stress of September. Now I’m all ready for fall!
For some reason, October seems to be “History Month” in the Highland Lakes area. Probably Burnet’s Fort Croghan Day (Saturday, October 8) and Llano’s Wild West Weekend (October 14-16) are big reasons why I have that impression, but there are several other things going on that seem to confirm it. First to my mind: October 2 has been designated by the Daughters of the Republic of Texas as Gonzales Day, marking the Battle of Gonzales and the beginning of the Texas Revolution. The DRT urges all Texans to fly their Texas flags in honor of the pioneers who fought in the 1835 Battle of Gonzales.
Another “history” event is the wonderful Western Trappings on the Llano Art Exhibit at the Llano County Historical Museum (see page 11 for details). Then there’s the Archaeology Fair at the Herman Brown Free Library in Burnet (2 p.m. on Wednesday, October 12) and the “Lunch with an Author,” featuring WW II researcher Dennis Blocker at the Marble Falls Library on Friday, October 14. There’s probably more, but that’s all I remember right now (and I think it’s enough to make my point).
While I’m thinking of history, I want to mention that JoAnn Myers, from the Burnet County Historical Commission , wishes to thank all those who helped make the Joppa fish Fry such a big success. It was a great event, and the funds raised will go to refurbish and preserve the last two remaining iron bridges in Burnet County.
After a couple of weeks with lots of activity in Burnet, it looks like Marble Falls is the place to be this weekend. The biggest event is probably the music-and-wine festival, FiestaJAM on Lake Marble Falls, but the Hill Country Space Expo, an impressive (and free) event at the Boys and Girls Club, could be a very close second. Then, depending on the weather, there could be a bunch of other activities: Main Street Market Day, the Sporting Clays shoot hosted by the Marble Falls Daybreak Rotary Club, Sweet Berry Farm’s “Harvest of Fall Fun,” The Phoenix Center’s Family Fun Day at Candlelight Ranch (on Sunday afternoon) and more. There’s also the “Don’t Hug Me!” show at Hill Country Community Theatre, Courtnaye Richard’s book launch at First Baptist Church and Chris Knight’s music at the Uptown (also on Sunday). Of course, there are events planned in other towns, too; just not quite so many.
Before I quit talking about Marble Falls, I want to mention the “Battle of the Bands” at this year’s FiestaJAM. Quite a few bands submitted videos for the online voting process, which has been going on for a couple of months. Of them, four finalists have been selected to perform by the lake on Saturday afternoon. One of those will win $1,000 cash (from sponsor Rebecca Creek Distilleries) and eight hours free recording time (from sponsor Uptown Sound Studio). The winner will be announced around 5:50 p.m. at Lakeside Park, just before headliner Joe Ely takes the stage for his performance.
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