The forecast calls for snow on the ground as part of Hondo’s holiday celebration Christmas in God’s Country. In Packers country, arctic conditions turned the NFL championship game between Dallas and Green Bay into the Ice Bowl 50 years ago.
Heavenly Holiday in Hondo
Hondo, west of San Antonio, calls itself “God’s Country,” so naturally its annual yuletide festival is called Christmas in God’s Country.
The celebration, December 8–9 this year, includes real snow, Santa Claus, a worship service, lighted night parade and vendor booths around the Medina County Courthouse square.
Medina Electric Cooperative is a sponsor of the event, and the co-op’s employees often volunteer to contribute to its success.
Just follow the holiday greeting signs, put up along U.S. Highway 90 by area businesses, to find your way.
Ice in their Veins
The legendary Ice Bowl, when the Green Bay Packers claimed the NFL championship with a 21-17 victory over the Dallas Cowboys in one of the coldest and most memorable games in league history, was played 50 years ago.
The game-time temperature December 31, 1967, was minus 13, with a wind chill of minus 48. Players said the turf at Lambeau Field in Green Bay was like a sheet of ice.
Quarterback Bart Starr, one of several players who suffered frostbite during the game, ran the ball into the end zone with just seconds left to clinch the Packers’ victory.
Seeds of an Idea
Legendary Trees, about 20 miles south of Athens, grows and sells saplings descended from Texas’ historic trees. Among the 11 trees currently available, most are oaks such as Texas A&M University’s Century Tree (the most popular), Comanche’s Fleming Oak, Stephens County’s Halfway Oak and New Braunfels’ Church Oak.
The idea for the business came from these very pages. Company founders Chuck Cade and Bourke Harvey, members of Trinity Valley Electric Cooperative, read Grow Your Own Tall Tale in the April 2015 issue. That story described the special project to sell saplings from the historic La Bahia pecan, which overlooks the ferry crossing at Washington-on-the-Brazos, where it has stood since the days of the Texas Revolution.
Cade and Harvey decided to seek out acorns and pecans from historic trees in Texas and offer them for sale. Pecan lovers now can select the Goodnight-Loving pecan in Palo Pinto County where, legend has it, Charles Goodnight and Oliver Loving sealed their partnership in 1866. Learn more at legendarytrees.com.
‘Volar un Papalote’
That’s how you would say “go fly a kite” in Spanish.
Two sections of the recently published children’s book 50 Cities of the U.S.A. visit Texas cities where you might hear that phrase.
The pages on Austin note that the Zilker Kite Festival is the U.S.’s longest-running kite festival, dating to 1929. The Houston pages note there are 145 languages spoken in the area.
“My heart found its home long ago in the beauty, mystery, order and disorder of the flowering earth.” — Lady Bird Johnson
The former first lady was born December 22, 1912, and the National Wildflower Research Center opened on that same date in 1982.