Articles Tagged with: senior travel Texas


Seniors Anchor Into DeSoto

800px-De_Soto,TX_sign_IMG_4906 This senior was recently reading about an outstanding basketball prospect who hails from DeSoto, Texas a suburb of Dallas with a population of around 50,000. Being a former basketball coach myself, I just had to find out more about this town that produced an athlete who excels.

The area was first settled in 1847, making it one of the oldest communities in North Texas. A post office was established in 1881, and the settlement was named DeSoto in honor of Thomas Hernando DeSoto Stewart, a doctor dedicated to the community.

He must have had a lot of influence on the town. In 2006, DeSoto was granted the honor of being named an “All American City”.

Seniors Impressed with The Manderley


The DeSoto city logo, adopted on August 26, 1976, is a large “D”, with the head of an eagle in the middle. It is the school district’s mascot as well as featured prominently on the city flag, water towers, and municipal government documents.

Read the specs on DeSoto and learn about the people, the economy,  and businesses. Seniors will discover an affluent african american community in Desoto. Now let’s take a look at the brand new event center in Desoto called The Manderley . In one word…awesome! I’d want to take in a performance or two there.


TripAdvisor wants senior visitors to know about Texas Helicopter Experience. Have you ever taken a helicopter ride?

The local Chamber of Commerce would like you to stop by.  “Live, work and play in DeSoto,” they note… “a progressive community with a small-town feeling, rich in diversity and the cultural arts. Located in the ‘Best Southwest’ – the southwest corner of Dallas County.”

Senior Hikers Find Great Trail

I’d want to take in the Windmill Nature Preserve with 75 acres of land, set aside by the City of DeSoto and Dallas County as a nature preserve. Nestled in woods, it provides shade in the summer and a great hiking trail with gentle slopes and a few steep hills.


The hiking trail in the Preserve was named the Best Urban Hiking Trail by the Dallas Observer a few years back. The five-mile loop trail also provides for mountain biking and is accessible year-round. Hike along its foot trails, viewing the well-preserved flowers and fauna of the region, and soon you’re lost in another world.

DeSoto offers fine housing, friendly neighborhoods, a great school system, updated parks, restaurants and shopping.” Seniors, set your GPS for DeSoto and anchor in for some great Texas chow in a great community. -jeb


Seniors Spend Time In Lakeway And Austin

lakeway Lakeway , a city in Travis County, Texas, has a population right at 13,200. Seniors traveling in Texas will find Lakeway next to Lake Travis, an “exurb” (a district outside a city, especially a prosperous area beyond the suburbs.) in greater Austin.

Spend some time in Lakeway and you may discover for yourself why they say that “Lakeway is much more than a place to live, but a community.”

John Henry Lohmann, a German immigrant and the first white settler, arrived in 1842 with his wife and children and named the area Ridgetop . The present city of Lakeway was founded on a 2,700-acre ranch owned by rancher Jack Josey.

Seniors Like Texas Hill Country


The Lakeway Marina is a hot spot for boaters. Since the 1960s, the Marina has been hosting generation after generation of families looking for lake fun in the pristine Texas Hill Country on the beautiful highland lakes.

The State Capitol in the city of Austin is one of the largest capitols in the country. Other historically significant sites nearby include Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park and the Texas State cemetery.

Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum, Daughters of the Republic of Texas Museum, and Texas Memorial Museum of Science and History display a variety of exhibits that reflect Texan history.

Winemakers, Flyboarders, And Beautiful Homes


Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum houses the presidential limousine and a replica of the Oval Office. O. Henry Home & Museum exists at the residence of the famous writer also known as William Sidney Porter.

Among other places of interest is the McKinney Falls State Park and Pedernales Falls State Park where senior visitors can go for swimming, fishing, tubing, horseback riding, camping hiking and picnicking.

Lakeway, Texas is home to many beautiful homes and businesses. Senior oenophiles, don’t miss the Lake Travis Wine Trader on Ranch Road. They continually have events, tastings and host wineries and winemakers from around the world.


Flyboarding! Wow, what a fun and unique new adventure attraction – flyboarding on Lake Travis with Aquafly .

You ask “ what is flyboarding? ”  Flyboarding was developed by Frank Zapata and the concept is pretty simple – attach one end of a 55′ fireman’s hose to the back of a waverunner and the other to a flyboarding boot contraption, slip into the boots, jump in the water and get hoisted up into the air, flying. Are you game? Me, I think I’ll pass and just watch the younger crowd soar above the water.

So, set your GPS for Lakeway and enjoy your stop. -jeb

Filed under : Family Travel , United States


Seniors Discover A Top Attraction

sign-flex-011 Old Town Spring , Texas is a shopping and historical railroad town that senior travelers will find 20 miles north of Houston in Spring. Featuring over 150 shops, galleries, boutiques, restaurants special events and festivals, Old Town Spring is voted one of the top attractions in Texas each year.

While the name “Spring” is applied to a large area of northern Harris County and a smaller area of southern Montgomery County, the original town of Spring, now known as Old Town Spring, is located at the intersection of Spring-Cypress and Hardy roads and encompasses a relatively small area of perhaps 1 km.


This town is rumored to be known as a robbery victim of Bonnie and Clyde. The bank building still has bullet holes from several robberies in the 1920s and 1930 like in Northfield, Minnesota.

Seniors Enjoy Historic Town

The Spring area was first occupied by a tribe known as Orcoquisac Indians who depended on fishing and hunting which they found in abundance in this area. The first merchants in Old Town Spring could be considered to be the Trading Posts that were established by the French and later the Spaniards called “El Orcoquisac” where trade with the Indians was brisk.


The name, “Old Town Spring,” is said to have originated after one of the worst winters in Texas history when a group of tired railroad workers were so happy at the approach of spring that they named their new camp “Camp Spring.”

At one time the town had as many as 5 saloons and a gambling hall. The town thrived on the booming railroad business in South Texas and resulting industrialization. Now the historic turn-of-the-century settlement features a variety of Victorian-style restaurants and shops.

Seniors Time Visit For One Of The Festivals

Senior visitors can stroll along tree-lined streets or relax in the gazebos and benches throughout the town. Seniors can also browse through a variety of boutiques, museums, galleries, restaurants and antique shops where you will discover original artwork, jewelry and woodwork.


The local shops and businesses came alive with a festival called the Spirit of the Season where visitors encounter strolling performers and festive exhibits. Senior visitors can stroll among the decorated winding paths and enjoy hot chocolate or other holiday treats.

Set your GPS for Old Spring Texas just north of Houston and join in on all the fun and excitement in a town that celebrates Five Major Festivals each year. You can be almost certain to find one going on upon your arrival. -jeb

Filed under : Family Travel , United States


Seniors Stop In Nocona

250px-Nocona_welcome_sign Nocona is a city along U.S. Highway 82 and State Highway 175 in Montague County, Texas. The population runs right at 3,000, so it is small, but senior visitors will find it worth a stop.

The city, its lake, and its resurgence as a regional travel destination were featured in the June 2012 edition of Texas Highways magazine.

The city is named for Peta Nocona , a Comanche chief. The area was first known to white settlers as the last stop in Texas before crossing the Red River on the Chisolm Trail.


It was founded in 1887 along a particular bend in the Gainesville, Henrietta and Western Railway line, which soon became part of the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad, connecting Gainesville and Henrietta, and later Wichita Falls.

Nocona assumed the role of economic and industrial center of northern Montague County, and many older towns in the area, bypassed by the railroad, shuttered and its citizens moved to Nocona.

Seniors Find Lake Nocona


The “North Field”, an oil field between Nocona and the Red River, contributed to Nocona’s economy for much of the 20th century and continues to do so on a small scale.

Lake Nocona or Farmer’s Creek Reservoir is approximately 10 miles north of the city. It is a highly popular recreational lake with folks  from across north central Texas offering many recreational opportunities! Three public parks are scattered around the shores of Lake Nocona: Weldon Robb Park, Joe Benton Park and Boone Park.


On Lake Nocona senior visitors will find Nocona Hills, an attractive gated lakeside “city” with many homes, a hotel, golf course, landing strip, and other amenities. Nocona is also home to  one of the finest city parks in all of Texas.

Seniors Also Find Nocona Boots

Seniors, while you are in Nocona, pick yourself up a handsome pair or two of the famed Nocona Boots . In 1925, Nocona Boots was founded by Enid Justin, the daughter of Justin Boots founder H.J. “Joe” Justin, in Nocona, Texas. Enid’s goal was to carry on her father’s tradition of making quality western boots in the town he loved.


Mr. Justin, or “Daddy Joe,” was a perfectionist with every detail of his handcraft. In 1879, he started his tradition of fine boot-making in Spanish Fort, Texas. His cowboy customers could order custom-fit boots that were ready to pick up after their return from cattle drives.

One of Nocona’s more notable residents was “Jackrabbit” Jack Crain: 1939, 1941 All Southwest Conference and two-time All-American Halfback, Texas legend, and the man who saved Texas Longhorns football team in 1939.

Mr. Crain also served four terms as a Texas state representative. Nocona’s high school football stadium is named for him. An account of the game that changed Texas football is at Mack Brown’s Texas Football, and believe me, football is BIG in Texas.

Seniors, set your GPS for Nocona and enjoy Texas hospitality. -jeb


Seniors Stop In Decatur

images Recently I was watching a rodeo on TV that featured bull riding. One of the cowboys was from Decatur, Texas, thus this travel blog. Senior travelers will find Decatur is located in Wise County which was established in 1856.

Taylorsville, in honor of Zachary Taylor, was made the county seat. Absalom Bishop, an early settler and member of the Texas Legislature, opposed naming the town after a Whig Party member, and in 1858 arranged to have the name changed to Decatur, in honor of naval hero Stephen Decatur.

The first post office and school were established in 1857. The town began to flourish and in the early 1860s the first of four courthouses was erected and later, new stores. Ranchers and herders would come in off the Chisholm Trail to grab supplies. Remember that old trail? It was used in the post-Civil War era to drive cattle overland, from ranches in Texas to Kansas railheads.

Seniors Discover A ‘Best Kept Secret’


Although Decatur is a small city , 6300, senior visitors will discover many amenities offered in larger cities: six popular parks, a regional hospital, lots of places to shop and dine, a large public library and a challenging 9-hole golf course, Decatur Golf Club.

The local Chamber of Commerce calls Decatur “one of the best-kept secrets in north central Texas”. The city square, centered around the Wise County Courthouse, provides senior visitors with a full taste of Texas hospitality with its shops, eateries, and a popular bed and breakfast. Decatur has immediate access to lakes, hiking trails, a state park and hunting properties.


Pack a picnic and head for Harmon Park located on the corner of East Mill Street and South Church Street. You will find an elaborate park with a large  playground and 2 little league baseball fields and close by, a skate park.

Once the home of Decatur Baptist College, it is now the Wise County Heritage Museum owned by the Wise County Historical Society. There are many treasures of late-Nineteenth and early-to-mid-Twentieth centuries housed in over three stories of exhibits. That’s where I would head for first on my visit.

The museum is alive with the activity of preserving Wise County’s past. The museum is the headquarters for the Wise County Historical Commission and the Wise County Historical Society, Inc.


There Are Lots Of Decaturs In The Country

After that, I’d dine with my wife at Sweetie Pies Ribeyes. With a name like that, I figure I just can’t go wrong.

I discovered on this blog that there are other cities named Decatur in Alabama, Iowa, Georgia, Nebraska, Indiana, Illinois and perhaps a few I missed. It is a popular city name. But seniors are invited to stop in Decatur, Texas and enjoy Texas at its best.

On your way into town, stop by the Visitor Center at 201. E. Walnut Street. -jeb

Filed under : Family Travel , United States


Seniors Discover Bandera

us-txbdr My wife and I both are from small towns in Iowa. Hers (516) and Mine (285). That’s small by most standards for towns all over the country. This senior discovered a neat small town in Texas called Bandera , in the Texas Hill Country. Bandera is part of the San Antonio Metropolitan Statistical Area.

The population runs just under 900 and is often referred to as the “Cowboy Capital of the World.” Check out the “Things to Do” on the website above. I’d want to be sure and take in the Frontier Times Museum that is loaded with early Texas history…and get this…over 30,000 items on display. Senior visitors will find several old historic buildings dating back to the mid 1800s.


Bandera was the starting point of the Great Western Cattle Trail, during the second half of the 19th century. Today a bronze monument, honoring the many National Rodeo Champions who call Bandera home, stands on the courthouse lawn.

Seniors Seek Out A Dude Ranch

The area became popular with folks from San Antonio wanting to escape the city’s summer heat – and in the 20s and 30s – with increased car ownership (Bandera never had a railroad) “Dude Ranches” started appearing. Several of the oldest ones remain in business today.


Read what Byron Browne has written on Bandera and its past. It will take you a while to read but it is chuck full of interesting facts.

I found it of interest that Bandera was known for roofing shingles. The numerous Cypress trees along the region’s creeks provided wood for shingle manufacturing and a mill was set up in 1852. It was the first business in Bandera.

Cowboy Capital of the World


Bandera County beckons senior visitors to share a taste of the Old West set against a backdrop of the spectacular scenery of the Texas Hill Country . Bandera’s title, “Cowboy Capital of the World” originated when it became a staging area for the great cattle drives of yesteryear.

When ranching fell on hard times in the 1930′s, an enterprising rancher decided to take in “dudes” to help him through the depression. An exciting new industry was born. It continues to flourish today with a number of excellent Dude Ranches operating throughout Bandera County.


On Sunday mornings, Bandera is a popular destination for motorcyclists from San Antonio, known as the Bandera Breakfast Run. The local Chamber of Commerce notes that the history of Bandera can be divided into two parts: Polish and non-Polish settlers. Both wrote the rich tapestry of history with hard work, faith and grit and both still claim community-building descendants 150 years later.

Seniors, make Bandera a stopping point when you are in the San Antonio area and enjoy a Holiday in the Cowboy Capital of the World . -jeb

Filed under : Family Travel , United States


Seniors Stop In Humble

humble-texas-court-reporting I was recently watching a college bowling tournament and one of the competitors was from Humble, Texas.  Not knowing anything about Humble, I figured it was time to learn more about this town. Senior travelers will find Humble within the Houston metropolitan area with a population just over 15,000.

The city is on I-69 to the north of the metropolis of Houston. I did not realize just how large Houston was until I drove across the entire city to the George Bush International Airport to pick up a relative. It is gigantic, with over 2 million residents and ranks fourth nationally following New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.


Petroleum has been the basis of Humble’s economy since its beginning. The city was the namesake for Humble Oil and Refining Company, which merged with the Exxon corporation two decades ago.

Seniors Enjoy Oil Boom Town

So how did it get a name like Humble?  Just before the Civil War, a wandering fisherman, Pleasant Smith Humble brought his family into the area, settling on the banks of the San Jacinto River.  A flood drove his family in search of higher ground and soon a small community began to form in the area.  A pioneer oil boom put the town on the map.

Oil_field,_Humble,_Texas Pleasant Humble lived in this area before 1889, hewing his timber into railroad ties, mining gravel from his land, keeping store and serving as Justice of the Peace.

Seniors Find Museums, Historic Homes And Rodeo

Facebook suggests that senior visitors check out the  Dolorean Museum. Remember the Dolorean car some 35 years ago with its short, chaotic history? Then there is The Humble Museum, a great place to review the history of the area.


Do take a stroll down Old Main Street where you will see many old historic homes. Senior visitors  will find four parks in Humble, great for a stroll or a picnic.

You may even luck out and come across special events taking place at the Humble Civic Center and Arena Complex. Seniors, if you enjoy rodeos, you will find a good one in Humble.

TripAdvisor suggests the Mercer Arboretum and Botanic Gardens. Follow that visit with a nice picnic in the Jesse H. Jones Park and Nature Reserve. Dinner at the Movie Tavern would top a full day in Humble.

It is said that… Humble makes Texas Proud ! Enjoy your stop in Humble! -jeb

Filed under : Family Travel , United States


Seniors Search Out Blanco

flag Blanco (pop. 2,200+) is located in the Texas Hill Country on the Blanco River and is famed as the Lavender Capital of Texas. Senior travelers will find Blanco 50 miles (80 km) north of downtown San Antonio and about the same distance west of Austin. The Jewel of the city is the gorgeous Blanco River with its blue-green water.

On the historic Blanco Town Square seniors will enjoy shopping the antique and gift stores and touring the 1885 Historic County Courthouse . Lovingly restored by the Old Blanco County Courthouse Preservation Society, the building now operates as a visitor center, gift shop and community center. The town square is joined to the state park by a two-block City Park, with a nature trail and Xeriscape garden.


Senior Enjoy The Vineyards And The Lavender Fields

I would want to check out the Texas Hills Vineyard located in the gentle hills of the picturesque Pedernales River Valley in the Texas Hill Country near Johnson City. They are the producer of the only Pinot Grigio in Texas, and for you oenophiles , there is a tasting room on site.

TripAdvisor discovered that the Real Ale Brewing Company is a fun place for a visit as is the Buggy Barn Museum Complex. Senior golfers, toss your clubs in the trunk and play a round or two at the Vaaler Creek Golf Club and bring along your favorite fishing rod, as Blanco’s Trout season is extremely popular.

Lavender Stripes

Hill Country Lavender Farm,  Texas’ first lavender farm is truly a treat for the senses with panoramic views, live oak trees, and more than 2500 lavender plants. Oh, that aroma, I can smell it already.

Lavender thrives in Texas Hill Country with over twenty lavender farms in Blanco County. The countryside will be bathed in lavender during the Lavender Festival with the whole county participating in the celebration.

Merchants will offer lavender merchandise and restaurants will serve lavender-flavored dishes and selected vendors and artists from across the Hill Country will offer lavender-related pleasures and treasures from the finest craftsmen.

Seniors Enjoy Texas Hill Country


Blanco was settled 1853 by pioneer stockmen who had to fortify homes against hostile Indians. It was named Blanco (Spanish word meaning white) for the Blanco River.

The town was the Blanco County seat from 1858 to 1891, when the county seat was moved to centrally located Johnson City, Texas. Blanco is now a popular tourist and resort area in the Hill Country.

With our last name being Becker, we just had to include the Becker Vineyards in Hill Country.  We have been there and enjoyed every moment.

Antique stores, art galleries, flea markets, restaurants, and artisans occupy the historic buildings around the old Blanco, Texas courthouse. And get this…the courthouse and 37 other Blanco buildings on or near the square are listed in the National Register of Historic Places. -jeb


Seniors Enjoy Scenic Flower Mound


How about that name? Neat huh? With a handle like that I just had to do a blog on this town of 69,000. So where is Flower Mound? Senior travelers will find it located northwest of Dallas and northeast of Fort Worth adjacent to Grapevine Lake .

Flower Mound derives its name from a prominent 12.5-acre mound located in the center of town. The mound is huge and rises 650 feet above sea level and stands 50 feet above the surrounding countryside on the shore of Grapevine Lake.


The city got its name in the 1840s because of an unusual amount of wildflowers that grew on it. My brother, a deceased PhD botanist, and I, a master gardener, would find the mound to be of most interest.

They say that wildflowers and native prairie grasses flourish throughout the year. Flower Mound was originally occupied by Native Americans.

Senior Travelers Find Family Community

The area was settled by the Europeans in the 1840s. It was established soon after Sam Houston settled a tribal dispute in 1844 and Indian raids in the area ceased. Permanent settlers moved in, attracted by the quality of the soil, which was suitable for raising cotton, corn, and wheat. It was incorporated as a town in 1961.


Although an effort to create a planned community failed in the early 1970s, Flower Mound’s population increased substantially when Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport opened to the south in 1974.

Senior visitors find that Flower Mound is a family-oriented community that prides itself on maintaining a small town atmosphere. Flower Mound was recently recognized for its excellence in the field of Parks and Recreation Management by the Texas Recreation and Parks Society (TRAPS). The Town was selected to receive the 2015 Texas Gold Medal Award.

Senior Travelers Find a Premier City


TripAdvisor has several must see and do attractions l in Flower Mound that you will not want to overlook starting with the CAC Waterpark. Bring along your bathing suit and jump under the 60-gallon dumping bucket. Ever done that before. It’s fun.

The local Chamber of Commerce notes that Flower Mound held the title of the Second-Fastest Growing City in Texas for much of the 1990s. Flower Mound’s low tax rate, excellent school system, safe neighborhoods and a quality of life unmatched in any community make it one of the premier cities in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex to live and raise a family.

Senior visitors will discover that Flower Mound balances a unique blend of country atmosphere with a dynamic environment. Check out FlowerMound.Net run by residents who live and work in Flower Mound, then set your GPS for this fascinating city. Enjoy all Texas amenities that the town has to offer. -jeb

Filed under : Family Travel , United States


Seniors Find Another Great American Food Town

Unknown Why would seniors want to stop in Driftwood Texas? Well, most of all it was selected by Condé Nast Traveler magazine as a Great American Food Town.  It is famous for Salt Lick BBQ on Farm to Market Road. So, get your coffee and let’s check out Driftwood, Texas and another Great American Food Town.

This BYOB, cash-only, BBQ spot with a rustic setting & live music outdoors is about 25 miles down the road southwest of Austin. The folks there are delighted to share their world-renowned Bar-B-Que with senior visitors along with an extra portion of Texas Hill Country hospitality.


The Roberts family recipes have roots back to the wagon trains in the mid-1800′s. They want you to enjoy the same warm atmosphere and delicious Bar-B-Que they savored around the campfire years back. Does that entice your palate?

Seniors Enjoy More Than They Can Eat

If you know about the Amana Colonies in Iowa, they are famed for their family style servings placed right on the table in front of you. Salt Lick has a menu that will set senior visitors up with heaping helpings of beef, sausage, and pork ribs, served with potato salad, cole slaw, beans, bread, pickles, and onions right on your table.


Driftwood is a census-designated place and unincorporated community in northern Hays County, Texas. It lies along Farm to Market Road 150, north of the city of San Marcos, the county seat of Hays County.

The town is steeped in history and although the earliest settlers arrived in the area now known as Driftwood around 1850, the community was established later in the 1880s.

Driftwood shrank almost to a ghost town by the early twentieth century; although it grew somewhat by the middle of the century, it returned to its almost-deserted state by the 1970s.


Seniors Sample Texas Hill Country Wines

Driftwood is home to The Wildflower Barn Event Center and the Lazy 8 Ranch which had its dry mix products featured by the Texas Department of Agriculture in the 2010 Texas State Fair.

TripAdvisor suggests a Texas Trail Ride and for senior oenophiles (that’s a wine enthusiast), they also suggest a visit to the Duchman, Driftwood Estate or Wimberley Valley Wineries.

That will keep you hopping cross-country for a while sampling some fine Texas Hill Country Wines.


I counted a dozen different types of wine at the Duchman Winery made from 100% Texas grapes. Folks who have been to the Driftwood Estate Winery on Elder Hill Rd. commented on not only the quality of the wine, but the fabulous scenery.

One last view of Salt Lick and the open pit used for making their famous BBQ. Viewing that video really made me hungry. How about you? -jeb

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