Archive for the 'Christmas in the Parks' Category

State Parks Offer Unique Holiday Fun

Monday, December 4th, 2017
Abilene State Park Christmas.

Abilene State Park Christmas.

This is Passport to Texas

Get to a state park or historic site this holiday season.

When we get to go outside and integrate holiday nostalgia and mix that with the outdoors and Christmas lights and food—it creates a really unique experience.

Thomas Wilhelm, with state parks, says forty-three sites have planned more than 60 holiday-themed events.

Our historic sites are doing a lot of period appropriate recreations of Christmas. We’ll have a lot of fun outdoors with decorated campsite events, Santa hikes, that sort of thing. We also have a lot of food themed events this year.

Such as a taffy pull and cookie walk. Experience other sweet events like A Very Marshy Christmas at Sea Rim State Park near Beaumont.

Santa and Mrs. Claus arrive by airboat, and hang out with the kids and take pictures. Lake Mineral Wells State Park, near Fort Worth, they are having their Cross-Timbers Cowboy Christmas. And they’ll have Christmas Cowboy Style. They’re having a cowboy poet come in, a cowboy singer. And they’ll gather ‘round the campfire. Palo Duro Canyon is having their Balloon Glow event in the canyon, which is a really unique experience. And they are collecting donations for the High Plains Food Bank, which is a great opportunity to participate in “the season of giving.”

Find all holiday events at

That’s our show… Funding provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

A Month of Holiday Fun Ahead at State Parks

Friday, December 1st, 2017
Enjoy a festive holiday season at Texas State Parks

Enjoy a festive holiday season at Texas State Parks

This is Passport to Texas

Texas State Parks have what you’re looking for this holiday season.

On December 2 join the festivities at Lake Casa Blanca International State Park in Laredo, for the Fourth Annual Christmas Boat Parade! There’s Music and games. Activities begin at 5:30 pm and the Boat Parade will begin at 7:30 pm.

Also on December 2, from 6 – 8 p.m. at Goliad SP & HS, Dr. James Lee directs the Beeville Community Chorus as they present a selection of sacred and secular Christmas music inside the old mission chapel.

On December 9th, celebrate an 1850’s Christmas at Washington-on-the-Brazos SHS. Explore the farm. Fall in with rowdy revelers. Meet up with St. Nick. There’s an evening service with a traveling minister and a barn dance, too. Reservations are encouraged.

December 15 from 6-8 p.m. enjoy a sparkly evening at Monument Hill & Kreische Brewery State Historic Site when you walk their1/4-mile trail of lights that overlooks the city of La Grange. Experience the 1850s era home of German immigrant H.L. Kreische bedecked in German-Texas Christmas splendor of the period.

In the Galveston area? On Christmas day join Ranger Lisa for 1.5 mile afternoon stroll along the beach. Look for birds, dolphins, sea shells, or the occasional $20 bill. It happens.

Find more events at

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti

2016 Holiday Events in Texas State Parks

Monday, December 5th, 2016


This is Passport to Texas

Texas state parks pull out all the stops during the holidays.

All of our parks are doing some kind of event, or having some kind of special event for the holidays.

Aaron Friar promotes parks for Texas Parks and Wildlife. During this season, overnight campers are encouraged to decorate their camp sites.

Which is a lot of fun. A lot of them [State parks] are waiving campsite fees for the folks that will decorate their campsites. It’s just a lot of fun, because everybody can get involved. It’s like a trail of lights.

Nearby communities visit parks during December to enjoy the “light-hearted” creativity of overnight campers.

They’ll do hayrides [at some parks] and all sorts of special things with that—so it’s fun.

Imagine a hayride through your favorite park on a chilly winter evening while enjoying a festive light display along the way…and then ending the evening’s enjoyment with a craft activity or sweet treat.

We have a lot of cool arts and crafts activities that parks are putting on. And cookies and hot chocolate and wassail… I think we’re going to keep Santa pretty busy this year. He’s going to be making a lot of visits to a lot of our parks.

Find a list of events at; you may just discover a new family tradition for the holidays.

That’s our show… Funding provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Take a Walk on the Twinkly Side

Thursday, December 1st, 2016
Family at Kreische House during Trail of Lights.

Family at Kreische House during Trail of Lights.

This is Passport to Texas

Thousands of twinkling lights illuminate a quarter mile walking trail this holiday season at the Monument Hill and Kreische Brewery State Historic Sites in LaGrange.

The trail of lights is open to the public five nights during the first part of December. That’s December third, ninth, tenth, sixteenth and seventeenth, from 6 pm to 8 pm. And our park is decorated with lots of lights and different ornaments throughout the grounds. Kreische house is open, it’s decorated for Christmas. We have entertainment, refreshments, and Santa Claus is there for children to tell their wishes to.

Dennis Smith is park superintendent.

[It’s] just a really pretty site here. We sit on a 200 foot bluff that overlooks the city of La Grange–and see the night lights of the city. It’s just a really spectacular opportunity for people to come out and enjoy a great Christmas celebration.

Smith says the trail of lights is the perfect family activity for the holiday season.

Every year we have comments from families that say we’ve been coming out here for the last 20 years. Families that come from Houston, Austin, San Antonio–just to come back to the trail of lights each year. We see more and more of that as we go by, and are just really glad to see these families keep coming back with more generations of their families to help celebrate the season.

Find complete details about the tail of lights at Monument Hill and Kreische Brewery State Historic Site in La Grange, including entrance fees at

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Christmas at the Mission

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2015
Mission Espiritu Santo

Goliad State Park and Historic Site: Mission Espiritu Santo

This is Passport to Texas

Texas State Parks provide soul-satisfying getaways during the holiday season. Park spokesman, Thomas Wilhelm says on Saturday, December fifth, Goliad State Park and Historic Site, presents Christmas at Mission Espiritu Santo.

22— Goliad’s a beautiful park, and their Christmas event is really special. They are having their Christmas concert on December fifth. That’s when the mission is decked out for Christmas. They have a local choir come in and they do a mixture of sacred and secular music. It’s a really beautiful opportunity. Plus, the park is also decorated throughout the month of December. They call it History in Lights, where it’s decorated for the Christmas season.

And that’s just one many holiday events and activities for your family and friends to enjoy at your state parks. Find more details at

22—The holidays are such a busy time. And so, it’s a great opportunity if you can get outside and take a break and really enjoy a unique experience. Get out of the shopping malls. Get away from just the general craziness of the season, take a breath, and get to see a unique aspect of both he holidays and state parks. It’s redefining both at one time.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.