La Feria News

Get Out and Explore Texas

Grab your hat and experience all that is Texas

Bill Keltner

Bill Keltner

It is amazing what you can see and do in the state of Texas with a little bit of imagination and research. The luscious semi-tropical climate and friendly atmosphere of the Rio Grande Valley draw thousands of folks every year to spend the winter with us. And every year a great number choose to drop anchor and make this their permanent home.

But, remember: Texas is a big state—there is more. So, grab your hat and kick up your heels and experience all that Texas has to offer. It makes no difference whether you’re are a winter visitor on your way home, or a native Texan, do yourself a favor and get to know your state better.

Almost everyone lives within a short drive to out-of-the way places that are fascinating because of their role in the history, culture and natural beauty of our state. Just remember six flags have flown over forts, capitols, court houses and military installations in Texas.

No other state has a history even resembling Texas.

The park ranger at Sam Houston National Forest gave us some very good information and advice. He said it is sad that so many tourists whiz through an area, and don’t check out the out-of-the way places just off the main roads. These officers love to direct tourists to local areas of special interest, and don’t want tourists to leave without seeing them.

If your taste is for breath-taking views of canyons and mountains, then west Texas is your destination. But, don’t just breeze through and say you saw them—enjoy them and stay a while. Do you like forests of tall pine trees reaching to the sky? Then Sam Houston National Forest is a must. It lies a bit north of Houston on the way to Nacogdoches.

For history buffs, Palo Duro puts on a fabulous “Texas Legacies” Outdoor drama in the Palo Duro Canyon. For those who are aficionados of rough and tough riding, one can’t miss the annual Rodeo and Reunion honoring old-time XIT ranch hands. It is staged on the property of the XIT ranch in Dalhart.

The Scarborough Faire in Waxahachie annually attracts 1000s to see local actors don Medieval armor and joust menacing opponents. The event creates an air of chivalry and gallantry of days gone bye.

Tradition says you just aren’t a Texan until you have attended the world’s largest Rattlesnake Roundup staged in Sweetwater, Texas. This year is takes place on March 10-12, 2017. It’s three days of Rattlesnake dances, snake handling, guided snake hunts, and snake milking techniques. Y’all come, Y’hear?

And, neighbor, Fredericksburg in the Hill Country has more attractions than you can shake a stick at. It’s rich in German Biergartens, plantation mansions and a world-class WW11 museum. It is also the gateway to the fabulous Texas wine country.

The trick is to prepare and plan your excursion. The place to start is at the offices of the Texas Traveler Information Centers scattered throughout the Valley. Helping folks discover Texas is their business. These helpful people will provide you with maps, brochures and tips to the most popular out-of-the way places. They love to do it. And their services are free.

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