Page 1

Welcome to the

Hill Country River Region


Dining • Lodging • Events • Things to Do & More

in Concan, Camp Wood, Leakey, Rio Frio, Utopia, Uvalde & Vanderpool

Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017


Welcome to the 7th Edition

Hill Country River Region Published by The

Hill Country Sun

Celebrating Our 27th Anniversary 1990-2017

Contents copyright ©2017. Reproduction of any portion of this publication in any form requires written permission of the publisher

Spring/Summer cover photo courtesy Fall/Winter cover photo courtesy LeAnn Sharp

H Hill Country River Region Crawlinks Texas Cajun Sausage Co.................................................... 4 Frio Bat Flight See millions of bats emerge.............................................. 4 Frio Reservations Vacation homes & cabins............................................ 7 Garven Store Texas Jerky, Supplies & Much More................................... 7 Hill Country RV Rental RV Rentals......................................................... 4 Lockhart Real Estate Farm, Ranch, Hunting, Recreational...................... 7 Map of Hill Country River Region....................................................... 6 My Stompin’ Grounds Books by Lora B. Davis Garrison . ...................... 32 Uvalde County Texas . .......................................................................... 3

H Rio Frio Page 2, 5, 8-10 Bluebird Hill & Star Suite Secluded Getaway with Pool......................... 9 Hill Country Nature Center, Hill Country Nature Tours................ 2 Rio Bella Resort Cabins, Vacation Home on the Frio River..................... 10 Rio Frio Lodging Vacation Rentals........................................................... 2 Rio Run Villas Fully Furnished Townhomes.............................................. 9 River Bluff Cabins Cabins on the Frio River............................................. 5 Whiskey Mountain Rentals House & cabins near Frio River................... 8

H Leakey Pages 11-19 Kenzie, Luke and Julie

John and Melissa

Julie Spell Harrington Publisher/Advertising • 512-484-9716

Melissa Maxwell Ball Editor/Design • 512-569-8212

BBG’s Bakery Baked Goods.................................................................... 16 Bear’s Market & Specialty Meats Produce, Meats, Fuel, Gifts, Wine....... 11 Bent Rim Grill Burgers & More............................................................... 19 Canyon Charm Home Decor, Apparels, Accessories, Antiques................ 15 Catahoula Woodworks Gifts & Home Decor........................................ 16 Cypress Frio Waters Cabins on Frio River.............................................. 19 Frio Canyon Chamber of Commerce Local information..................... 17 Frio Canyon Real Estate Shawn Streib Gray, Broker/Owner................ 15 Frio Canyon Vacation Rentals Lodging............................................. 15 High Places Realty Mary Kay Windham, Broker..................................... 14 Killough Properties Cortijo Capataz Ranch........................................... 18 Leakey Springs Cabins Waterfront Cabins & Group Lodge................... 12 Mama Chole’s Mexican Restaurant Mexican Cuisine......................... 14 Oak Hill Cabins Cabins with Beautiful Views.......................................... 15 Pioneer Real Estate Shirley Shandley, Broker/Owner............................ 13 River Haven Cabins on the Frio.............................................................. 19 Septic Systems Services Septic Systems, Backhoe Work........................ 12 The Friends Grill Homemade Cooking, Daily Specials............................ 14 The Loft at Owl Hollow Lodging on 320 acres.................................... 16 The Wash Barn Laundromat.................................................................. 19

H Concan Pages 8, 20-32, 51

March thru September 888-502-9387

Sausage made from Crawfish & Pork

Purchase online at in Leakey at The Mercantile or Bears Market or call me at the ranch! 1-877-GO-CAJUN • Ranch 830-232-4424

CELL 830-279-9946 4

Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Andy’s on River Road Tubing, Shuttle, Cabins, RV Sites, Gifts, Store.......... 26 Bec’s Store & RV Park RV Park, Cabins, Store........................................ 25 Bonnie’s Bakery Fresh baked goods........................................................ 8 Camp River View Cabins, RV Sites, Tent Sites on Frio............................. 23 Casa Rio River frontage home, near-river cottage..................................... 33

Hill Country RV Rentals “We Deliver & Setup, So All You Need to do is Show Up” Equipped Kitchen & All Bedding Provided

Frio Canyon, Bandera & Medina Lake Areas



H Concan Pages 8, 20-32, 50, 51

Concan General Store Fuel, Meats, Pizza, Firewood, Tubes, More......... 51 Concan Pies Baked Goods...................................................................... 30 Concan River Lodging Vacation homes near the Frio........................... 31 Crider’s on the Frio Cabins on the Frio................................................... 8 Elm Creek Stables Trail Rides, Pony Rides, Gift Shop............................... 32 Frio Country Resort Riverfront Cabins, Homes, RV Spots....................... 20 Frio’s Dry 50 River Gear, Gifts, More ...................................................... 29 Frio Family Getaway Cabin Rentals...................................................... 29 Frio Fergie’s River Co. River Gear, T-Shirts, Flip Flops............................ 50 Frio Fried Chicken at Concan General Store.......................................... 51 Frio River Realty Larry Roberts, Owner/Broker, Homes, Ranches .......... 22 Frio River Vacation Rentals Cabins, Homes........................................ 22 Golf Club of Texas - Concan 18-Hole Championship Course............... 33 House Pasture Cattle Co. Dining, Live Texas Music.............................. 24 Loca on the Frio Boutique Gifts, Jewelry, Decor, Clothing.................. 28 Nana’s RV Park Frio Riverfront Park........................................................ 29 Neal’s Dining Room Home Cooking..................................................... 21 Rio Frio Fest Texas-style Spring Break Music Fest on Frio River................. 27 River Oaks Resort Homes and Cabins................................................... 33 River Rim Resort Cabins, RV Sites on the Frio River................... Back Cover River Road Market Fest Local festivals................................................. 30 Seven Bluff Cabins RV Sites, Cabins on the Frio River............................ 50

H Utopia/Vanderpool Pages 34-38

Clear Springs Lodging Vacation Rentals on the Sabinal River................ 37 Four Sisters Ranch Cabin Secluded Vacation Cabin............................. 35 Foxfire Cabins Log Cabins on the Sabinal River...................................... 34 Lone Star Motorcycle Museum........................................................... 35 Lost Maples Country Store Groceries, Gas, Grill, BBQ......................... 37 Sabinal River Lodge Log cabin lodge................................................... 36 Sarah’s Utopia Home decor, gifts & more.............................................. 34 The Lodges of Lost Maples Vacation Cabins ...................................... 35 The Lunchbox Eatery inside Utopia General Store.................................. 37 Utopia River Retreat Main house, 6 cabins with riverfront.................... 38 Utopia information online.......................................... 36

H Camp Wood Pages 39-42, 51

Arrowhead Lodging on the Nueces River.......................................................... 41 Bear Creek Fudge & Chocolates Sweets & Treats............................... 39 Corner Store Restaurant & Ice Cream Parlor Burgers, More........... 41 Dixie Printz Screenprinting, Clothing, Gifts & More.............................................. 41 Marilyn’s Jewelry, Quilts, Knives, Cowhides & Western Decor.................. 40 Nueces Canyon Chamber of Commerce Annual Events.................... 42 Rushin’ Tea Room & Coffee Bar Coffee, Tea, Sandwiches, Pastries..... 39 Rushin’ Tea Rummage Antiques & Vintage Items.................................. 39 Suzie Q’s Quilting Supplies....................................................................... 51 Valley Ranch Retreat, Woodbine Inn & Mill Wheel on the Nueces Guest Cottages Lodging.................... 51

H Bandera Page 43

Bandera Riverfest June 24.................................................................... 43 National Day of the American Cowboy July 22............................... 43

H Uvalde Pages 44-49

Amy’s Attic Gifts, Home Decor, Jewelry.................................................. 44 First State Bank of Uvalde 24/7 ATMS in Camp Wood, Leakey, Sabinal and Utopia............................ 49 Hangar 6 Air Cafe 40’s Style Fun, Fabulous Food.................................. 49 Lantana Realty Real Estate ................................................................... 45 Once Upon a Time Antiques................................................................. 44 The Local Fix Coffee Shop & Cafe Daily Specials, WiFi....................... 49 The Redbird Antiques, Vintage Collectibles............................................. 44 Uvalde County Fairplex Event Venue & Indoor Arena.......................... 47 Uvalde Memorial Hospital ................................................................. 48

389 Cooper Mountain Rd. Rio Frio, TX 78879 830-232-5775

River Bluff Cabins Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017




Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Don’t miss: Lone Star Motorcycle Museum

At the intersection of Highways 83 & 41

Buck Home of Billy and the The Lone Star Motorcycle Museum, 4 miles north of Vanderpool. Photo courtesy Lone Star Motorcycle Museum.


he Lone Star Motorcycle Museum—open Friday through Sunday March to November from 10 am to 5 pm— features an impressive display of machines from around the world, dating from the 1910s to modern day. Admission is $6 for adults, $5 ages 65 and up. Kids ages 15 and under

and 90 years and up get in free. Groups of 10 or more are $5 each; active military and spouse $3 each. FYI • The Lone Star Motorcycle Museum is located at 36517 Highway 187, four miles north of Vanderpool, less than one mile south of Lost Maples State Natural Area (also on Highway 187). For more information, visit the web site at


830-640-3235 •

Vacations • Homes • Cabins


200 Acres

Great mix of topography: flat & rolling to rugged & scenic The gate is open - come take a look. • 3200+/- Custom Adobe • Real County N of Camp Wood • Veranda • Gourmet Kitchen • Whitetail - Axis - Turkey • Water well • 1400 sq’ Guest House • 400 sq’ Cabin • Ag use tax value • Deer blinds & feeders $2,250,000.00 Poquito Grande Ranch Kinney County 874 acs • $1,487/ac

Flat Rock Ranch Edwards County 2,000 acs • $10,000,000 Live Water

Tom Williams Ranch Edwards County 48 acs • $450,000 Live Water

Sweeten Ranch Uvalde County 128 acs • $3,500/ac

Weldon Family Ranch Edwards County 1,478 acs $1,785/ac

Psalm XXIII Ranch Edwards County 2,434 acs • $1,650/ac


830-234-3415 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017



Enjoying nature in the River Region


hen you’re out and about, be sure the Hill Country Nature Center (located on Farm Market 1050, 10 miles west of Utopia, 5 miles east of Garner State

Park) is on your go-to list. Here, you’ll find fossils, arrowheads, and Texas snake, bird, bat, butterfly and insect displays highlighting the natural attractions of the Hill Country

Baby bluebirds in the nest. Photo courtesy LeAnn Sharp.

River Region. You can even see the happenings inside a bluebird nestbox, thanks to some nifty technology. And perhaps best of all, you’ll find the knowledgeable and friendly LeAnn

Sharp, founder of the Hill Country Nature Center, who makes it her mission to expose the natural wonders of the area to guests and locals alike. See NATURE CENTER, page 9

Participants on a nature field trip. Photo courtesy LeAnn Sharp.

Every Cabin Less Than 100 Yards from the River!

Where home sweet home becomes cabin sweet cabin

Open Year-Round offering Historic 1869

House & Family Cabins on 18 acres Fully Furnished • Hot Tubs • Pet-Friendly Satellite TV • Free Wi-Fi A Few Minutes Away from the Frio River

830-232-5583 •

Conveniently located 3 miles south of Leakey

On US 83, 1.5 miles past Garner State Park

830-232-6797 • cell 936-520-3683

Fresh baked goods, from our family to yours Place your order today, call

3.5 miles to Happy Hollow Tube Rentals & Shuttle 5 miles to Garner State Park

Make your online reservations today! 8

Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017


Search for

Crider’s Cabins

NATURE CENTER, from page 8 Hill Country Nature Center serves as the headquarters for the annual Nature Quest event next year. A unique learning opportunity, Nature Quest allows participants to choose from a host of hands-on field trips, workshop and other programs presented by the experts. It’s a great chance to learn all about birding, bats, native plants, champion trees and the natural history of the area. LeAnn also owns and operates Rio Frio Lodging and Hill Country Adventures, providing plenty for visitors to see and do. The beautiful nature trails at Indian Blanket Ranch (adjacent to the Nature Center) cut through the valleys and hills providing a picturesque path for hiking, jogging and mountain biking.


River Run Villas Fully furnished townhomes

Pool • WiFi • TV/VCR/DVD

LeAnn Sharp at Hill Country Nature Center with a bottle-fed baby squirrel. Photo courtesy LeAnn Sharp. The trails are open to the public and offer an opportunity to hike, explore and watch wildlife. To hike or bike, just check in at the Nature Center. See NATURE CENTER, page 11

Bluebird Hill & Star Suite Secluded Getaway on a 250-acre Ranch

Private Pool • Hot Tub • Star Gazing Birdwatching • Nature Trails • Hiking Mountain Biking • Fireplace Campfire • Wi-Fi • TV • Volleyball Play Area for Kids

Sleeps Up to 18!

Beautiful Ranch Wedding Destination 6641 RR 1120 • Rio Frio, Texas

5 minutes to Garner SP 25 minutes to Lost Maples SNA

830-966-2320 •

Perched off the Frio River and located conveniently between Garner State Park & Leakey

830-232-5444 • Find Us on

/River Run Villas Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017



R io B ellaR esort on the Frio

10 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

NATURE, from page 9

Two-tailed Swallowtail. Photo by Tony Galluci. Trails are open Monday through Friday from 10 am to 6 pm, with an admission of $5 per person for the day. To get an earlier start, call the office a day in advance (for weekend reservations, call by Friday.) Another attraction is the Bluebird Trail — 30 nestboxes and six viewing stations with benches

where you can see small cavity nesters including Eastern Bluebirds, Black-crested Titmouse, Bewick’s Wren, Ashthroated Flycatcher, and Carolina Chickadee with nests, eggs or baby birds. Nestbox Trail Birding Tours are available March through June (advance reservations only). There is plenty more spectacular birdwatching on the ranch, with 126 species of birds sighted. You just might see a Golden-cheeked Warbler, Black-capped Vireo, Vermillion Flycatcher, Zonetailed Hawk, Hummers and more. Bring your camera — photo opportunities abound. FYI • Find complete details about Nature Quest (scheduled April 19-22, 2018) on the web site at www.

Enjoy biking, hiking and exploring along the trails at Indian Blanket Ranch. Photo courtesy LeAnn Sharp. For more information about the Hill Country Nature Center and nature tours—including Bluebird Nestbox Trail, Hiking and Biking, Big Tree Tours, visit the web site at Check the web site for scheduled Campfire

Storytelling at Nature Center; or reserve Storytelling to come to your lodging. LeAnn and Anthony Sharp also provide lodging services through Rio Frio Lodging ( For more information, visit the web sites or call 830-966-2320.


EAT Well!

Grill Big!

BBQ, Specialty Meats, Prepared Foods, Fresh Produce, Beer/Wine, Picnic, Gifts, Fuel, Deer Corn/Feed, Hunting/Fishing License, Cold Storage

830-232-5559 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 11

For more local info

Utopia & Sabinal Canyon Frio Canyon Chamber Nueces Canyon Chamber Sabinal Chamber Uvalde County Uvalde CVB Lost Maples SNA 830-966-3413; Garner State Park 830-232-6132;


Leakey SpringS CabinS Waterfront Cabins Family Cabins Waterfront Group Lodge

Margie Sutherland, Manager



Have a hankering for pie? Look no further!

BBG’s Bakery

ou’ll find plenty, plus fresh doughnuts, kolaches, turnovers, and more at BBG’s Bakery in Leakey. Proprietor Barbara Elmore says her biggest sellers are doughnuts and her popular pineapple carrot cake, available daily, along with pecan pies, buttermilk pies and chocolate sheet cakes in small and large sizes, and more. “I’ve even had people ask me to ship my pineapple carrot cake to Houston,” Barbara says with a smile. Expect a simple, country bakery with walk-in showcases, and a friendly staff, where “everyone is welcome.” Special orders are available. BBG’s Bakery is at 279 Mountain Street in Leakey. Hours are 7 am to noon Tuesday through Saturday. For more information, call 830-232-5703 or find BBG’s Bakery on Facebook. You can also find BBG’s Bakery goods at the Leakey Mercantile.


Concan Pies

(830) 275-3864 John Hutchings Septic Systems Services Leakey, Texas

All phases of Septic Systems and Backhoe Work

HUB Certified 12 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

hawn and Harry Wolfe are the proud proprietors of Concan Pies,

family owned and operated and this summer in its 13th season. The popular walkup shop opens daily at 11 am Memorial Day through Labor Day (closed Tuesdays) and closes when they sell out. Plan to arrive early; ordering in advance is encouraged. Shawn, whose family has been in Concan since the ‘30s, says the shop’s biggest seller is the “Concan Pie” — a delicious layering of chocolate pie and coconut pie, topped with meringue. Many visitors consider a stop (or two) at Concan Pies a yearly ritual. “We love it when our customers tell us we are a part of their vacation tradition!” says Shawn. With a variety of homemade pies, cakes and cobblers, there’s sure to be something on the menu for every sweet tooth. Special orders are available. Find a complete menu on Concan Pies’ Facebook page. Concan Pies is at the intersection of Highways 83 and 127 in Concan. For more information, call 713562-8043. See PIE & MORE, page 13

looking for a laundromat? Nueces County Washateria

in Camp Wood • Hwy 55 South of Downtown

The Wash Barn

1256 S. US Hwy 83 • 830-232-5690

Neal’s Laundromat

in Concan • 20970 Hwy 127 • 830-232-6118

PIE & MORE, from page 12


Frio Farm Store

t Frio Farm store, “our biggest seller is definitely our Southern Bourbon Pie made with Jack Daniels. You can also order an extra whiskey shot,” says Frio Farm owner, Nanette Watson.  “And during the season, don’t miss our pies-in-ajar… I love Strawberries and Champagne Tres Leches, which is so good. And my favorite whole pies would be Float-the-Frio (vanilla bean and rum cream pie with rum whip cream) and Mexican Hot Chocolate (made with Ghiradelli chocolate, chipotle and ancho chile with whip cream.  Outstanding!” she smiles. What makes Frio Farm pies special? “Our award winning Vanilla Extracts

made right here on the farm,” Nanette says. “We age our vanillas and premium alcohol using Jack Daniels, Tito’s Vodka and Bacardi Rum with real vanilla beans in barrels over five years. We use only pure, natural ingredients, and never chemicals or additives.  Know your farmer, know your food.” Frio Farm is a small, family farm on the Frio River. The Frio Farm store is at 500 CR 348 in Concan, open Memorial Day to Labor Day Monday through Saturday (closed  Sunday) from 11 am until sold out. In the off season, preorder 24 hours in advance and pick up at the store Monday through Friday. For more information about Frio Farm, call 830-965-7646 or visit the web site at

natural delights

TOP/RIGHT Photos by Melissa Maxwell Ball. ABOVE Photo by LeAnn Sharp.


Pioneer Real Estate “We hit the trail for you.”

Shirley Shandley, Owner/Broker 698 S. Highway 83 • Leakey, Texas

830-232-6422 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 13


Mama Chole’s

Rio Frio’s Landmark Oak

Mexican Restaurant Mon -Sat 11am to 9pm CLOSED SUNDAY

Hwy 83 North Leakey, Texas

830-232-6111 Rio Frio’s Landmark Oak. Photo by Melissa Maxwell Ball.

High Places Realty Mary Kay Windham, Owner/Broker 664 S. US Highway 83 • Leakey, Texas

830-232-4408 •

RIO FRIO H The Rio Frio Landmark Oak, State Champion (Texas Escarpment Live Oak Tree 1988) stands on the east side of the Frio River on Farm Road 1120. According to the marker at the site, the “mighty oak served the early settlers as a social, religious, educational and political gathering place. During the early 1870’s, a school house was built just west of the tree. It was constructed of native Cypress lumber and its walls were filled with caliche. Between 1880-1891, N.M.C. Patterson laid out the town of Rio Frio using the tree and schoolhouse mountain to the east as bearing points.”

Find Us on

The Friend’s Grill


Great Food H Great Atmosphere Daily Specials H Catering Outside Dining Available Join Us On Our New Patio! Steaks • Chicken Fried Steak • Catfish • Salads Meatloaf • Burgers • Homemade Desserts • Wi-Fi Pre-Made Casseroles • Custom Orders We Serve Tootie Pies! Apple, Lemon Velvet, Key Lime, Pecan, Chocolate, Chocolate Pecan, Coconut and Buttermilk Call ahead for hours as times may vary by season. 153 Hwy. 83 South (across from Real County Courthouse) • Leakey, TX • 830-232-6301 14 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Storyteller Lee Haile crafts tall tales galore


rofessional storyteller Lee Haile delights visitors and locals alike with his captivating brand of campfire storytell­ing, offered through Hill Country Adventures since 1999. A gifted perfomer, Lee amuses audience mem­bers—young and old— with traditional cowboy storytelling, singing, and plenty of tall and funny tales about people, critters and cowboys. Storytelling sessions— offered year-round—last up to an hour and a half, available by reservation “at our ranch or at your lodg­ing,” says LeAnn Sharp of Hill Country Adventures. Lee is such a skilled weaver of words, LeAnn says it’s hard to tell if his tales are really true or just tall ‘til he has come to the end. “Did he really have a pet rattlesnake when he was a boy that followed him everywhere he went? Has he really had close calls and encounters with java­ lina, mountain lions and skunks? You’ll have to hear him to find out!” Don’t be surprised if

Lee has the kids dancing to the “Hokey Pokey,” adults dancing and singing “La Bamba” (in Spanish) and everyone crooning “Ol’ Su­ sanna,” “Streets of Laredo” or ’70s tunes. It’s hard not to laugh along to Lee’s hi­ larious animal stories like “The Sky is Falling,” com­ plete with animal sound effects. Campfire storytell­ing is perfectly suited for families and groups of all ages. “Lee has performed for birder groups from up North, Boy Scouts, 3rd to 5th grade Montessori School groups, even at 60th and 70th birthday parties,” says LeAnn. “He is enthusiastic and gets everyone involved. Kids love getting up to par­ ticipate, adults can’t keep from laughing and their stresses disappear.” FYI • Campfire storytelling with Lee Haile is offered through Hill Coun­ try Adventures, owned by LeAnn and Anthony Sharp. An hour and a half ses­ sion is $150, by appointment only and available at your location or at their ranch. For more information, call 830966-2320 or visit the web site at www.


The shops that stay open year round!

Two Leakey Locations! We welcome our tourists/visitors

Boutique Home Decor/Antiques 1034 US Hwy 83 S 167 US Hwy 83 830-232-6102 across from courthouse 830-232-6104

Home Decor • Apparel • Accessories • Antiques

Frio Canyon Real Estate

Shawn Streib Gray, Owner/Broker 102 West Ranch Rd. 337 • Leakey, Texas

830.232.4500 Frio Canyon Vacation Rentals Rates starting at just


Couples Stays or Large Family Retreats Waterfront Lodging Available

Storyteller Lee Haile delights audiences year ‘round with exciting tall tales. Photo courtesy Hill Country Adventures. • 830-232-FRIO (3746) 527 S. Highway 83, Leakey, Texas 78873

Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 15

Natural beauty of BBG’s Bakery local golf courses Cakes • Pies a’s

Baked G




r ba


Banana Nut Bread Kolaches • Turnovers



Call for special orders You’ll also find our goodies at

The Leakey MercanTiLe!

830-232-5703 830-486-6343

279 Mountain Street in Leakey On 320 Private Acres New Salt Water Swimming Pool Sleeps Up To 12

and equipment for men and women. A variety of burgers, sandwiches, salads and more are served up in the Patio Grille, which offers year-round dining and a full bar. Check the web site for hours. The Golf Club of Texas - Concan is located at 520 Mountain Valley Drive. For more information, and to book your tee time, call 830-232-4471. More information is available on the web site at www. Utopia Golf Billed as “the most beautiful nine-hole golf course in Texas,” Utopia Golf is nestled in the SabiSee GOLF, page 17

Cedar Oil • Jewelry • Lazy Susans • Pottery • Ornaments • New & Antique Stained Glass • Lariat Baskets

Catahoula Gifts J Decor c ustom WooDWork

open year round

105 RR 337W @ Hwy 83 Leakey, TX


Mantels • Crosses • Custom Furniture • Calf Skins • Cowhides • Pillows • Handcrafted Glycerin Soaps 16 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

GicleE Prints & Cards by B.F. CHapa • Lamps • Lampshades

Mohair Clothing by Dolores • Mesquite Cutting Boards

830-261-4504 •


Golf Club of Texas-Concan eaturing a challeng­ing Bechtol-Russell de­ signed course, players enjoy the picturesque scenery at The Golf Club of Texas - Concan, from gorgeous hills and val­leys to stunning rolling terrain. The par 72 championship course offers 18 holes measuring 7,333 yards from the tips. Panoramic views of the Hill Country are found on every fairway and with premium Zoysia grass underfoot, this a must-play course. Rates are $49 weekdays and $59 weekends. The twilight fee is $30. The club has a wellstocked Pro Shop, offering the latest in golf apparel

GOLF, from page 16


Utopia Golf. Photo by Doug Shearer. nal Valley one mile south of Utopia on High­way 187. The course is the set­ ting for the 2011 movie “Seven Days in Utopia,” based on the novel “Golf’s Sacred Journey: Seven Days at the Links of Uto­ pia” by David L. Cook. A clubhouse, includ­ ing a self-serve hospitality room, overlooks the ninth hole at Utopia Golf. Rates are $12.87 for 9 holes ($10.73 for juniors and seniors);

and $18.23 for 18 holes ($16.09 for juniors and seniors). Cart rentals are $10. For more information, call Utopia Golf at 830-966-5577. Uvalde Memorial Uvalde offers an 18 hole public golf course located along the Leona River at 221 East Doughty. For more information about Uvalde Memorial Golf Course, call 830-2786155 or visit the web site at

Headwaters of the Frio River


Fire on the Frio BBQ Cook Off

1st Weekend in May, All Day, Chamber Arena Live Music, Art & Craft Vendors

July Jubilee/Rodeo

First Saturday in July Arts & Crafts, Food Vendors 8 am-4 pm Patriotic Parade 10 am Courthouse Square, Hwy. 83, Leakey Street Dance Saturday Night Rodeo - Friday & Saturday 8 pm, Chamber Arena

Christmas on the Square

First Saturday after Thanksgiving...Arts & Crafts, Vendors, Santa and More! Courthouse Square

Golf Club of Texas - Concan. Photo courtesy Golf Club of Texas-Concan. for lodging, retail stores, real estate, points of interest, activities & upcoming events

Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 17

Cortijo Capataz Ranch on Bull Head Creek Vance, Texas • Real County

461 +- acres with 1 1/3 miles of both sides of crystal clear Bull Head Creek with long deep green holes, waterfalls, rapids, multiple natural dams. The Ranch also offers spring fed New Creek, huge pecan bottoms, hardwood lined hills with towering limestone buffs, Cypress trees, a ranch-style home, irrigation canal and is loaded with native and exotic game. This is an exceptional recreational Ranch and won’t last! $3,950,000.

Call Morris Killough • 210-415-9850 • 18 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Leakey’s annual events


hese fun, annual events in Leakey offer just one more reason to head to this beautiful destination... The Third Annual Fire on the Frio celebration May 6-7, 2017, is an entire weekend of family fun, with live music, arts and crafts and a BBQ cook-off at the Chamber arena. Leakey’s July Jubilee and Rodeo weekend June 30-July 1, 2017, includes a rodeo both nights at 8

in the Chamber arena. A patriotic parade is slated for 10 am Saturday, with arts, crafts and food vendors on the Courthouse Square from 8 am to 4 pm. At Christmas on the Square November 25, 2017, celebrate the holiday season with arts and crafts, vendors and more on the Courthouse Square. FYI • Visit the web site at www. for lodging, retail stores, real estate, points of interest, activities and upcoming events. pm

Take a step back in time at Real County Museum

LEAKEY H Get a glimpse of pioneer life at the Real County Historical Museum. You’ll find a replicated log-cabin parlor, kitchen and bedroom, furnished with pieces donated by locals. See an 1880s horsedrawn hearse pulled in local parades and local stone dartpoints from prehistoric Native Americans. A former blacksmith shop (adjacent to the

museum) houses ranch relics and there are outdoor exhibits of farm implements, a log corn crib and jail cells from the 1910s. FYI • The Historical Museum is located 1/2 block north of the Real County Courthouse on Evergreen Street in Downtown Leakey, open Friday and Saturday from 10 am to 2 pm (March through the first two weekends in December). The museum is closed during January and February. For more information, visit the web site at www.


EscapE to LEakEy

Enjoy Rest & Relaxation at

RiveR Haven

on 6.5 acres overlooking the Frio River (Rio Frio) Log Cabins with River Views Lodge Available for

Reunions • Weddings • Meetings

Manager: Margie Sutherland • 830-232-5400 • 866-232-5400 (toll free)

Specialty Burgers, & A Variety of Menu Choices Dine-In or To-Go Clean Restrooms


657 West RR337 1/2 Mile West of Hwy 83 • 830-232-6649 Serving Breakfast 7:30 am to 11 am Cabins on the Frio River Where memories can be made for a lifetime.... Open Year-Round Reservations Required Private access to a 1/2 mile of the East Frio River 3 miles north of Leakey, Texas on US 83

MAKE YOUR RESERVATIONS TODAY! Hill Country Views, Wildlife, Tubing, Hiking, Star Gazing, Fishing, More

830-232-5955 •

Large & Extra Large Washers & Dryers (Front End Loaders)


See farm implements, replicated log cabin interior, an 1880s horse drawn hearse ABOVE and much more at the Real County Historical Museum in Leakey. Photo courtesy Real County Museum.

Clean, Cool and Comfortable One Mile South Outside of Leakey

1256 S. US Hwy. 83 • Leakey Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 19

Trail rides for great cause at Elm Creek



By Melissa Maxwell Ball

Private River Frontage

Cabins • Vacation Homes RV Spots • River Front Weddings Corporate Retreats & More!

ou might say Beverly Streib has a heart for horses. She and her husband, George, own and operate Elm Creek Stables, for more than 20 years offering guided trail rides on their ranch a quarter mile north of Garner State Park on U.S. Highway 83. The ranch is also home to Frio Canyon Horse Rescue, organized in 2014 as a non-profit 501(c)3. There, rescued horses are stabled, fed and receive medical care as they enjoy their new home, along with plenty of tender, loving care. Currently, 33 horses reside at the rescue. For Beverly, it all began about 15 years ago, when she went to a boarding facility to purchase a brood mare and while there, found an emaciated horse near death. “Long story short, I brought home two horses. A beautiful brood mare and a walking skeleton. We

Beverly Streib. Photo courtesy Elm Creek Stables. took the sick horse to another part of the ranch and went twice a day to feed, then three weeks later, George came in the back door and said, ‘Get in the truck!’” she recalls. “He took me to her and she had the ugliest foal on the ground, it couldn’t stand at all and looked like a bag of bones,” she says. “I called the vet and when he said to put them down, I hung up on him See HORSES, page 21

Call 1-888-9concan for more info Email 20 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Proceeds from trail rides and the petting zoo at Elm Creek Stables go to Frio Canyon Horse Rescue, currently rehabilitating 33 horses. Photo courtesy Elm Creek Stables.

HORSES, from page 20 and went to work on mom and baby... and saved them both,” she continues. “We still have that baby —15 years now — and he is in our string of horses. That was really the beginning of the rescuing,” she shares. Beverly loves seeing the recovering animals blossom physically and emotionally. “Rescue horses are often very unfriendly or so sick or malnourished that they no longer do much more than stand and breathe,” she explains. “It is wonderful to see them begin to trust people or for them to regain their strength and health.” She also enjoys the opportunity to introduce children to horses, and says she appreciates local volunteers from churches, college kids, young and old. All are welcome to help out at the rescue. “We have a retired vet on our board of directors,

my husband gets called on regularly to be my wrangler when needed. And I still ride and work with the horses,” she explains. Elm Creek Stables offers trail rides from 9 am to 5 pm. You can take a ride about two miles long with gorgeous trails and great scenery for only $30 per person. Pony rides are available for the younger kids for $10. Adults can also enjoy a High Trail ride (about 2.5 miles) for $45. The stables are extremely busy in summer, so remember to call ahead for a reservation. All proceeds from the trail rides and petting zoo at Elm Creek Stables go to the Frio Canyon Horse Rescue to help with the cost of vet bills and feed. Donations to Frio Canyon Horse Rescue are welcome, much appreciated and tax deductible. FYI • Elm Creek Stables is open

Beverly’s horse, who was also a rescue. Photo courtesy Elm Creek Stables.

The foal of Beverly’s first rescue, 15 years later. Photo courtesy Elm Creek Stables.

every day during spring break, and weekends after spring break through Memorial Day. The stables are open daily Memorial Day through the end of summer. Hours are 9 am to 5 pm; last ride out at 5 pm. Call for reservations. Please

bring cash or checks, no credit cards are accepted at Elm Creek Stables. For more information about Frio Canyon Horse Rescue and Elm Creek Stables, call 830-232-5365 or 830279-4051 or find them on Facebook.


Hearty Breakfasts • Daily Specials Chicken Fried Steak • Fried Chicken Steaks • Barbecue • Sandwiches Outdoor & Indoor Seating 20720 Hwy. 127 at Frio River in Concan, Texas

830-232-5813 A petting zoo has evolved from rescued animals, including three dogs, two axis deer, numerous goats and bottle fed babies,a pot bellied pig, a pea hen, a miniature horse, a donkey named Noah and more. Photo courtesy Elm Creek Stables.

SEASONAL Closed December - February Call or check web site for hours.

Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 21


Open All Year Personal Service/ Red Carpet Treatment “Providing unforgettable experiences, time & time again”

Best Vacation Rentals in Concan! More than 45 rental properties RIVERFRONT H POOLS HOMES H CABINS


Office at 289 CR 348 • Concan, TX

Homes H Ranches Acreages Vacation Rentals “I can show you any property for sale in the Frio Canyon. Catch the Frio Fever own a piece of the Frio!” Larry Roberts, Owner/Broker

Conveniently located in the heart of Concan 289 CR 348 • Concan, TX • 936.537.4555 22 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Beloved tradition of Garner State Park


ince the ’40s, folks have been gathering for the family-friendly jukebox dances at the Garner State Park Pavilion. Dances are Mon­ day through Saturday during Spring Break, and Saturday nights ‘til sum­mer. In the summer, you can enjoy a dance every night of the week, with post-summer dances Saturday evenings. Garner State Park encompasses 1,774 acres and 2.9 miles of beautiful Frio River frontage, including 11 miles of scenic trails. Whether you’re camping overnight or visiting for the day, with swimming, fishing, biking, geocaching,

dancing, hiking, picnicking and more, there’s plenty to do and see. One fun diversion is putt-putt golf at Stinkin’ Sweet Candy Shop and Mini Golf (located at the Park Pavilion), with rentals $5 each ($2 for kids 3 and under) including a putter, ball and 18 holes. Want to go for round two? Play again for only $2 per per­son — any age. You can golf 7 days a week from 10 am to 10:15 pm through the second week in August, Saturday and Sunday only during the off season (closed Decem­ ber through March). See GARNER SP, page 24

Campers ready to hit the Frio River. Garner State Park encompasses 1,774 acres and 2.9 miles of beautiful Frio River frontage, including 11 miles of scenic trails. Photo courtesy Kelly Marler.


2,800 feet of Frio River frontage Cabins • RV Sites • Tent Sites Groceries • Tubing • Fun •

On the Frio River • 1636 County Road 350 • Concan, Texas • 830-232-5412 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 23


GARNER SP, from page 23

Hot Summer 2017 at House Pasture!

Wednesday Nights KARAOKE Thursday Nights Steak Night (live music) Friday & Saturday Nights Live Music

May 27, June 3, June 10 TBA June 17 June 24 June 30 July 1 July 7-8 July 14 July 15 July 21 July 22 July 29 Aug 5 Aug 12 Aug 19

William Clark Green Kevin Fowler Roger Creager Cody Johnson Kyle Park Mike & the Moonpies Wade Bowen featuring Dalton Domino

TBA Josh Abbott Band Spazmatics Stoney Larue Cory Morrow Bellamy Brothers

Call or Check Our Website for Restaurant Hours of Operation House Pasture Cattle Company

Concan’s Original Country Music Venue & Restaurant

Wed-Fri 5 pm-12 am • Sat 5 pm-1 am

Check schedule & get tickets online at 2 N. County Rd. 348 “River Road” Concan, Texas • 830-232-6580

24 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Its a tradition! Ready for the nightly dance at the Garner State Park Pavilion. Photo by Julie Harrington. The updated camp to make res­ ervations and store has just about every- for more information. thing you need from fireGarner is the most wood to gourmet muffins popular state park for overand coffee, s’mores fixin’s night camping in Texas. to candy, drinks, ice cream Camping is available in and more. Find snacks and supplies, and rent tubes, barbecue pits, tables, even fans and heaters at the store. Paddle boats and boards, kayaks and canoes are also for rent from A short but steep hiking trail leads to the store. The Garner the summit of Old Baldy, a limestone Grill serves burg­ mountain that overlooks popular ers, fries, corn Garner State Park near Concan. dogs and more, Photo made fresh to order, Saturdays and Sundays screened shelters, cabins April through May, dai­ly all and campsites. Make your summer and Fridays and reservations early! GarSaturdays in the fall. ner’s busy season is MemoAnother fun tradi­ rial Day weekend through tion, summer hayrides Labor Day weekend, and (hosted by the Friends of the park often reaches maxGarner State Park Tuesday imum capacity. through Friday from June FYI • For information about to August) de­part from the rentals, the Park Store, Garner Grill and Visitors Center promptly at much more, visit the web site at www. 7 pm, so plan to arrive no To make reservalater than 6:45 pm. Visit the tions at Garner State Park, call 830Friends of Gar­ner Visitors’ 232-6132 or visit the web site at tpwd. Center or call 830-232-5999


THE GARNER STATE PARK SONG In the Western part of Texas Ninety miles from San Antone, There’s a place I go each summer When I get the urge to roam. I’d stand out on the highway, If I couldn’t get a ride I’d walk To Garner State Park. There’s the cutest girls from Texas And from everywhere They trade their city slickin’ clothes For some boots and western wear, We swam all through the day And we danced when it got dark At Garner State Park.

Family Park

Volleyball & Playground

Cabins • Pets Welcome RV Storage • RV Parts • Free WIFI AC Bath House • Laundry Facilities Picnic Tables • Free Cable TV 12 NEW Shady Mega Sites for Big Rigs! GREAT WATER... no need to bring bottled H20!

She was the cutest girl around, We walked down to the water Found a big rock, began to talk At Garner State Park. Next thing I knew it was 4 a.m. She said my mother’s surely worried About where I am And with the Texas sky above, We couldn’t help but fall in love At Garner State Park. Well, the summer it was over And we had to say goodbye, We said we’d see each other next year, As a tear fell from her eye. When I came I knew no sorrow; now I’m leaving with a broken heart At Garner State Park. Oh, but I’ll be back again next year...

Stay for a Day or a


LIFETIME! • 29015 N US Hwy 83


Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 25

Amazing Frio Bat Flight for real family fun


atch in awe as 10- to 12-million Mexican freetailed bats emerge from Frio Cave on a ranch near Concan at Frio Bat Flight — March through September. The private 10,000 acre property has been continuously owned by the same family since 1874. Bain and Kirstin Walker run the tours, each season hosting a whopping 3,000 - 4,000 visitors who come to see the second largest bat population in the world open to the public. Bain begins each evening with a presentation and handles questions from the audience as the crowd waits for the bats to

begin emerging from the cave about 30 minutes before sunset. “The weather can affect tour times, which change through the season depending on the bats’ activities,” Bain says. Each night the bats travel up to 35 miles from the cave, covering several hundred miles in an evening. “They generally hunt all night at the beginning and end of the season. Once the young are born, however, they return to the cave every two to four hours to nurse,” explains Bain. The bats that call Frio Cave home are insectivores, preferring agricultural pests. “Scientists have

Watch as millions of bats emerge. Photo by LeAnn Sharp. discovered the bats eat, on average, their body weight nightly. That amounts to about 100 tons of insects a year!” says Bain. FYI • Bats emerge from Frio Cave March through September. Frio

Bat Flight entry is $12; $10 for kids 10 and under; and $11 for seniors. Kids 5 and under get in free. Tour times vary, according to season. For more information, call 888-502-9387, email info@ or visit the web site at


“Where All Your Troubles Just Float Away!” Come Stay, Shop & Float!

SHOP Groceries, Boutique Gift Shop, Volleyball, Horseshoes

STAY Cabins, Suites, Rv Sites Tent Camping All Cabins & Suites have free Wireless internet

FLOAT Tubing, Kayaking & Shuttle Service

830-232-5444 • • 21488 TX Hwy 127 • Concan, Texas 26 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

River Road Market Fest


on’t miss the River Road Market Fest at Andy’s on River Road in Concan March 4, May 6, October 7 and December 16. Fest hours are 10 am to 6 pm. March 4 Food from Photo courtesy River Road Market Fest / local vendors, ting zoo, caricature artists, kids’ activities, local artisan items, live music and more. May 6 Cinco de Mayo celebration like no other, with mariachis, delicious Tex-Mex food, a Bloody Mary-making contest, jalapeno-eating contest, tons of local vendors with food and homemade goods, games for kids and more. October 7 Gorgeous fall foliage, live music, local food and homemade goods vendors, games for kids and a festive pumpkin patch. December 16 Holiday craft vendors, Jingle Bell 5K Run, live music, food, and photos with Santa. FYI • Andy’s on River Road is located at 21488 TX-127 in Concan. For more information, visit the web site at

d e lights er v i r

TOP LEFT & RIGHT by Julie Harrington. ABOVE BY Melissa Maxwell Ball RIGHT by LeAnn Sharp.


Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 27

Natural delights

LEFT Photo by Julie Harrington. ABOVE Photos by Melissa Maxwell Ball


Did you know?

How Concan got its name


heodophilus Watkins first settled at Con Can and built the first log cabin with a chimney in 1862. When a Post Office was to be established in 1880, a name had to be chosen. One story of how the community of Concan got its name goes like this: “The men of the community gathered on Saturday afternoons and played dominoes and ‘coon can,’ a Texas card game. ‘Coon can’ was a variation of ‘Conquian,’ the earliest known rummy game, played since at least the 1880s. When word came that a Post Office was to be located there and a name for the town had to be decided on, the men decided that they would send in ‘Coon Can.’ In Washington, no one had heard of such a game or such a word, so they thought the Texans must have misspelled the word and meant Con Can (now spelled Concan).” FYI • Excepted from Lora B. Garrison’s book, “Texas Pioneer Families.”


Gifts H Jewelry Home Decor 337 E Main Street

Fredericksburg 830-307-3083

23223 N US Hwy 83


830-232-4402 28 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017


Largest Cypress in the state CONCAN H Check out the largest Texas tree! The Bald Cypress can be seen as you amble along Buffalo Creek at Criders on the Frio in Concan. The massive tree boasts a circumference of 438 inches, a height of 96 feet and a crown spread of 112 feet. Don’t forget your camera...come take a look at this magnificent specimen and capture your own special family photo. It’s on private property, so please do stop by the office for a pass before you visit. FYI • Visit the web site at

NaNa’s RV PaRk & RV ReNtals River frontage park located on Frio River, each site features a picnic table, a fire ring, 20-30-50 amp electrical, sewer & water hook-ups

Across the Frio River from Garner State Park on County Road 350

RIO FRIO, TX • 830-232-4653 Tim & Linda Hester

830-232-5903 Cell 830-261-0772 Fax 830-232-5801 PO Box 34 Concan, TX

Cabin Rentals

Our 33rd Summer on the Frio! A Frio Tradition!

Frio River & GSP T-Shirts Shorts H Flip Flops H Patagonia Consuela H Southern Tide H Chacos Rowdy Gentleman H Hats/Caps River Gear H Yellow Box Jewelry H Gifts H and More! Hand Dipped Blue Bell H Hawaiian Shaved Ice Open Sunday-Thursday 9:30 am - 5:30 pm • Friday-Saturday 9:30 am - 6:30 pm

Check Us Out On Hwy 127 in Concan

Like Us On

830-232-6300 • Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 29

Demon bump gates


By Robert K. Davis & Lora B. Davis Garrison

(The first part of this story and details came from my older brother, Robert K. Davis)


HWY 83 & 127 Concan, TX 78838

713-562-8043 30 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

he Demons that have damaged more vehicles, emotions, theories, psyches and lives than Billy-the-Kid, have almost disappeared from the Texas scene. Barbed wire made it possible for every rancher to delineate his kingdom and keep a reasonable portion of his livestock on its home range. The trails and roads that meandered aimlessly from town to town and ranch to ranch made gates and wire gaps a given; keeping the gates closed a responsibility. I once had a red mule that would jump a fence any place I covered the top wire with my brush jacket. Most folks never had such a mule. They had to deal with the gates and gaps. Stopping one’s vehicle, dismounting to open the gate, driving through, dismounting to close the gate was an aggravation. A welltrained buggy team would proceed through the gate while the driver held it open, thus saving the effort of remounting to drive through. A bright individual devised the demon, the bump gate, or, as some called it the bumper gate. It was an accommodation to the auto car. Thus bumpers were added so they could bump the

Lora B. Davis Garrison. Photo by LeAnn Sharp. gates without damaging the auto cars. The first bump gates were double-wide gates, a heavy affair made of wood such as 2 x 12 planks, which were suspended at the center from a tall mast by a cable or chain. As the bump gate was pushed open, the two suspending strands wound around the mast and elevated the gate slightly. The massive weight spun the bump gate back to the closed position when released and hopefully after your auto car was out of the way. Approaching the bump gate, giving it the proper nudge with the auto’s front bumper and accelerating through as the gate swung open— without being banged in the back-end by a gate shoved too hard, or in the side by a gate not pushed hard enough as it returned too soon— was a study in finesse. See BUMP GATES, page 31

BUMP GATES, from page 30

Bump gates such as this have all but disappeared from the Texas scene. Photo by LeAnn Sharp. But adept as the ranchers were, the rear fenders of their trucks bore evidence of having been spanked at least a few times by gates. City folks who ventured onto country roads with nice cars spent

a wad of money for repairs to rear fenders. It required only slightly more planning, agility, coordination and timing than is required of an Olympic gymnast’s horse vault. The puny front

bumpers and plastic rear fenders on today’s cars would have been no match for the old bumper gates! Some ranchers who never perfected the technique required to pass through a bump gate countless times each year with chariot unscathed, built elaborate steel pipe frames around their pickups to take the battering. Later came singlewide bump gates — a car or truck could go through this from either direction. It would swing open when bumped, and then swing back to its original position. You no longer had to worry about damage to the rear fender; just to your bumper and the side of the auto. Wooden

bump gates were soon replaced by metal ones that would last longer. But with this new metal bump gate came more damage to your automobile. Major components of rural life were bump gates to accommodate open range for livestock (yet permit passage for vehicles), windmills for water, and wind chargers for radios. With the advent of rural electrification, a lot of things were changed, including the use of electric gate openers, and more recently the use of solar power to open gates. The exciting contest between man and the demon bump gate has almost disappeared. See BUMP GATES, page 32


(800) 591-3421 Family Owned & Operated Open Year-Round

Fully Furnished Vacation Rental Homes near the beautiful Frio River PO Box 45 • Concan, TX 78838 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 31

BUMP GATES, from page 31 LORA B. GARRISON’S ENCOUNTER WITH THE DEMONS You can still find bump gates in use in some rural parts of Texas, where there are large ranches with miles of County Roads. In March 2010, my daughter, LeAnn Sharp, and I went on a quest to find and photograph some of these demon bump gates. It was an all day experience that I won’t soon forget. We headed 45 minutes west of our Utopia home toward Camp Wood and then Barksdale. Several folks had told me about bump gates in that area. I was thrilled when we were able to find one really nice old wooden double bump gate north of

Barksdale that a local old goat roper told us about. It was in great shape and still in operation. LeAnn had searched the internet for bump gates in the area and found one account of some off road city slicker bikers on a dirt road with too many bump gates. Quote from a cross country motorcycle rider – “This turned out to be a very good, unpaved road with one serious flaw – a huge number of bump gates. We rode CR 380 from Barksdale heading west and must have gone through 20 bump gates in 8 miles. If it hadn’t been for all the gates this would have been a terrific road. The gates were so close together that you just


Elm Creek Stables “Come ride with us.”


couldn’t enjoy the ride. My recommendation is to avoid CR 380 west of Barksdale when you are in the area.” I bet they were calling them worse things than “demons.” Don’t think we ever found that same road, but we did find Cedar Creek Road. At one time it must have had near 20 metal bump gates, but this day there were only 14 still in operation. We bumped open six gates, lucky for us eight were propped open and four were broken. It had been many years since we had maneuvered a bump gate, and LeAnn cautiously bumped the first one perfectly. The second time didn’t go as well; as I was nervous and gasped, distracting LeAnn, she hesitated and that’s all it took. That gate opened and came back to meet

us. That happened once more, but she was able to put the car in reverse and get out of the way in time. We drove about 20 miles on this well maintained dirt road, through some beautiful and rugged Hill Country, enjoying the sunny day and our special time together. We forded through four rocky river crossings in some fairly deep water, and bumped open six bump gates only to find ourselves in the middle of nowhere, on a goat ranch confronted with a locked gate. We had found the end of the road. We were forced to turn around and head back the 20 miles we had just traveled, through river crossings and those same six demon bump gates, which by now had become not so fun. One good thing about See BUMP GATES, page 33

Drinks • Snacks Petting Zoo

My Stompin’ Grounds

Trail Rides 00 $

An Oral History Collection


Pony Rides 00 $

10 High Trail* $4500

by Lora B. Davis Garrison

My StoMpin’ GroundS

*High Trail: Longer Trail/Adults Only

Open 9 am-5 pm (last ride out at 5 pm) OPEN Everyday during Spring Break, Weekends After Spring Break, & Everyday Memorial Day through summer, Cash/Check Only Please.

1/4 mile N. of Garner State Park

On Hwy 83 N H 830-232-5365

32 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Texas Hill Country Settlers Their Own Stories An Oral History Collection

By Lora B. Davis Garrison

Texas Hill Country Settlers Their Own Stories

BUMP GATES, from page 32 tracing our tracks; the scenery always looks different from the other direction. And we had the chance to watch as wild Aoudad sheep climbed the cliffs above one river crossing. Seven hours later we were back home from our adventure, with stories to tell. Well, the Jeep has a grill guard which protected it somewhat, but unfortunately the plastic bumper ended the day with a few scraps and battle wounds from all those demon bump gates. FYI • Author Lora B. Davis Garrison is a woman who wears many hats. She is a historian, storyteller, businesswoman, rancher, gourmet cook, newspaper columnist, folklorist, as well as a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.

Born and raised a Texas ranch girl, with no electricity, no running water and an outhouse in the corner of the garden, she learned to cook on a wood stove, chopped wood and hauled water when the cistern was dry. She is a native of Uvalde County and a descendant of some of the first settlers in Texas and the Texas Hill Country. Lora has been collecting oral history stories since 1979. Her stories have appeared in magazines, newspapers, and in many Texas folklore publications. She traveled the world with her late husband, Col. Roger W. Garrison, during his 30 year career with the U.S. Air Force. They raised their five children in locations such as Guam, France, Thailand, Texas and numerous other states in the US. Lora B. Garrison’s books, “Cooking Around the World”( in 2 volumes) and “My Stomping Grounds,” featuring oral histories from the area can be ordered online at www.

CONCAN Offering River Frontage at River House & very near river at Hideaway and Cottage.


3978 CR 348 • Concan • • 830-591-3544

18-Hole Championship Golf Course Stay & Play Packages • Weddings Group Outings & Tournaments

Concan • 830-232-4471

36 cabins & homes on or near the Frio River in Concan, Texas 1-6 BEDROOM UNITS Pavilion Rental for Family Gatherings/Special Events Convenience Store on Site for last minute Camping & River Gear Pet Friendly H Hot tubs H Fireplaces Cabins have fully equipped kitchens, DSS/TV/DVD, A/C & heat • 1-800-800-5773 • 830-232-6106

Open Daily 9-5. Call or book online at

Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 33

Unique fine dining at Utopia’s Laurel Tree


eep in the heart of the Texas Hill Country River Region lies a secluded, timeless oasis – a charming town called Utopia. Unlike any other region in the state, it’s home to rolling hills, crystal-clear rivers, some of the largest trees in Texas and a surprising fine dining experi-

ence, The Laurel Tree. Chef Laurel Waters brought the exquisite taste of France to the Hill Country in 2004, after earning her Le Grand Diplome in Cuisine, Pastry and Wine from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris. A Hill Country native, she returned home after culinary school to build a


Painted Furniture • Paint for Furniture Home Decor • Gifts

Sarah Wernette

359 Main Street • Utopia, TX • 830-486-9508


beautiful, provincial building and grounds to accompany her amazing dishes. Laurel doesn’t use any sort of delivery service, so every meal is beautifully crafted, changing from week to week. She hand-selects all menu items herself and uses ingredients from her Potager (kitchen garden). The result is ever changing but with dishes like sausage stuffed quail, Texas sweet onion soup with goat cheese Ciabatta toast and fresh Bourbon apple cake with vanilla bean ice cream in the rotation, you’re sure to walk away satisfied. As if the food wasn’t enough reason to visit The Laurel Tree, this secluded beauty also offers a one-ofa-kind dining aesthetic … a treehouse. A special private dining room is nestled on the grounds in a rustic, 450-year-old oak tree. Coming about as a project in collaboration with the hit Animal Planet show,

Laurel Waters. Photo by Hattie Barham. “Treehouse Masters,” this intimate dining experience for groups of up to six people is ideal for special occasions. The space is complete with antique furnishings, unique artwork and a porch on which to relax and socialize after your meal. It’s the ideal place to cherish small, simple moments – and reignite your childhood spirit. Those looking to inSee LAUREL TREE, page 35


Log Cabin & Vacation Home Rentals in Vanderpool 830-966-2200 • 877-966-8200

34 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

In addition to the main dining room, the Laurel Tree offers private treehouse dining. Photo by Hattie Barham.

LAUREL TREE, from page 34 dulge will need to make reservations. The Laurel Tree serves lunch and dinner on Saturdays only, and slots fill up quickly. Openings are easier to come by inside the restaurant’s main dining room, a cottage café bistro, but

uniquely historic area that can give you the kind of quiet you need to truly disconnect from distractions and reconnect with those you love. Make a relaxing weekend getaway of your dining experience at The Laurel Tree and explore the other charms of this unspoiled haven. Diners who arrive early in the day can take their pick of water adventures, whether it’s down Chef Laurel Waters hand-selects all floating menu items using ingredients from the Frio with friends, fishher garden. Photo courtesy The Laurel Tree. ing in the clear Chef Laurel allows parwaters of the Nueces or ties to bring their own soaking up the sun on the wine with no corking fee banks of the Sabinal. and never turns her tables Just pick a river, plan over, so you’ll still need your adventure and float to secure your date in adthe day away under the vance. bright blue Texas sky. You Reservations for the won’t need to wory about treehouse are secured in lugging gear — as the area six-month windows— the has a variety of rentals next round will open up available in many locaon May 1 for July-Decemtions. ber 2017 reservations. If you’re looking for Utopia, and the rest an evening adventure, of Uvalde County, is a watch more than 10 mil-

lion Mexican free-tailed bats, the second largest population in the world, take flight for their evening hunt from the Frio Cave on a bat tour. Or, simply head back to one of the many charming rental cabins or luxury

vacation homes in the area to observe from the privacy of your own back porch. FYI • If you’re interested in booking a reservation at The Laurel Tree, call 830-966-5444. To plan your next trip to Uvalde County, go to www.


Four Sisters Ranch Cabin

Secluded. Picturesque. One of a kind. A true Utopia.

1848 LeMond Road • Utopia, TX • 210-414-4341

Lone Star Motorcycle Museum

“Wonderful Machines from the Past”

A world-class collection of Classic motorcycles on display. Located in the Heart of the Hill Country on Hwy. 187 one mile south of Lost Maples State Park. Open Friday, Saturday, Sunday 10 am-5 pm March - November

(830) 966-6103 •

Located on Scenic FM 337 between Vanderpool & Leakey By Reservation Only

(830) 966-5178

Poppies in bloom at The Laurel Tree. Photo courtesy The Laurel Tree. Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 35

Remarkable nature of Lost Maples SNA By Rob McCorkle,

Texas Parks & Wildlife Department he Sabinal River and its several tributaries have carved limestone canyons through the nearly 3,000-acre park straddling Bandera and Real counties at the western fringes of the Edwards Plateau. Here, the canyons’ moist, cool microclimates support a remarkable diversity of plant life found few other places in Texas. The bigtooth maple tree ranks as the park’s marquee species. In late autumn most years, the stands of old-growth maples set the canyons


ablaze in a riot of red, orange and gold foliage, drawing upwards of 50,000 leaf-peepers to the state natural area. The western cousin of the eastern sugar maple retained a foothold in the Hill Country canyons after vast sheets of ice advanced southward across North America almost to present-day Texas, and then retreated. (For an explanation of the park’s geological history and information about the bigtooth maple and other indigenous plant species, visit the exhibit hall in the park headquarters.) The park is home to the state’s largest known


Your Texas Hill Country Paradise

Local restaurants, lodgings, services, events & more!


A fully furnished, riverfront log cabin lodge available for year round vacation rental

Hwy 187 S • Utopia, Texas • 830-966-3393 36 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

species of the bigtooth, also known as the Uvalde bigtooth maple and canyon maple. The 40-foot tall maple with a 45-foot crown spread stands at the head of the park’s most popular trail, the .8-mile Maple Trail, just a few steps from the day-use area parking lot. However, to really appreciate this wondrous arboretum, visitors should park their vehicle and stroll the wooded canyon trails that traverse the upland canyons of the Sabinal River, as well as Can, Hale Hollow and Lane creeks. But no matter the time of year, Lost Maples SNA makes a worthwhile destination that will not disappoint. Visitors hoping to enjoy the park under less crowded conditions of late October and early November when the maples’ color peaks should consider an early fall visit. Nights tend to cool off and during warm, sunny days, the waters of the Sabinal and spring-fed swimming holes prove tempting spots to take a soothing splash. Almost 11 miles of well-marked trails lead to scenic overlooks, springfed ponds populated by Texas’ state fish, the Guadalupe bass, prime birding habitat and 40 primitive backpack camping sites. Composting toilets near several backcountry campsites make the wilderness experience a bit more pleasant. The Maple Trail pro-

Discover Lost Maples State Natural Area, a 2,175-acre preserve along the Sabinal River near Vanderpool. Photo by Chase Fountain ©Texas Parks & Wildlife Department. vides the easiest access to the park’s natural wonders, traversing mostly flat terrain through a moist, shaded Sabinal River canyon. Mature bigtooths share fertile canyon habitat with monstrous chinkapin and Lacey’s oaks, Florida basswood, pecan, black willow, green ash and American sycamore. Boulders the size of a subcompact car sit in the middle of the river and at the base of soaring limestone cliffs. Because of the canyonlands’ microclimate effect, the park contains numerous species of plants and animals of both eastern and western affinity, as well as rare species endemic to the Balcones Escarpment. Found here are the unusual Texas madrone tree, three kinds of buckeye, witch hazel (common in See LOST MAPLES, page 37


LOST MAPLES, from page 36 Mississippi), six different kinds of oaks, Texas mock orange and sycamore-leaf snowbell whose white clusters of flowers bloom in late September. The park’s birdlife reflects Lost Maples’ location in the North America’s central flyway, as well as its diversity of habitat that includes grasslands and scrublands; mixed evergreen and deciduous escarpment woodlands; and streamside woodlands. Birders from around the world visit the park to catch a glimpse of the endangered golden-cheeked warbler and black-capped vireo, as well as specialty birds such as the green kingfisher and zonetailed hawk. Wa t e r- a n d - e l e c t r i c campsites are at a premium at Lost Maples SNA. The 30 campsites, which also feature inground barbecue pits and shaded picnic tables, book up 11 months in advance for the peak fall foliage

period. Other times of the year, booking reservations early is recommended. In keeping with Lost Maples’ state natural area designation, the park has limited development and facilities. However, young and old alike can enjoy nature photography, hiking, camping, bird watching, backpacking, fishing and swimming. FYI • The day use-only park entry fees for persons 13 and older are $6 daily. Hike-in campsites are $10 a night and water-electric sites are $20. Lost Maples State Natural Area is located about an hour’s drive southwest of Kerrville and five miles north of Vanderpool on Ranch Road 187. Parking at Lost Maples State Natural Area is limited to 250 cars, so schedule fall trips during the weekdays, if possible. Fall foliage reports are available at state-parks/lost-maples/foliagereports. Reports are updated weekly through November. You can call Lost Maples SNA directly at 830-9663413. To make a reservation by phone, call 512-389-8900.

Lost Maples Country Store Groceries • Gas • Ice • Free Wi-Fi

Grill serving BBQ, Burgers & more! Beer & wine to go!

33533 FM 187 • Vanderpool, Texas

830-966-3568 •

The Lunchbox Utopia’s Eatery

inside Utopia General Store 406 N Main Street • Utopia, TX


Year-Round Vacation Rentals on the River A family takes advantage of a picturesque setting during a hike along the Maple Trail at Lost Maples State Natural Area near Vanderpool. Photo ©Texas Parks & Wildlife Department.

830-966-2164 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 37

Where to find WiFi? CAMP WOOD


Rushin’ Tea Room 79 Mountain Shadow Lane 830-597-4401

HOTexas BBQ 1001 Fisher Ave. 830-988-2133


Hill Country Nature Center on FM 1050 830-966-2320


Andy’s on River Rd. 21488 Texas Hwy. 127 830-232-5444

LEAKEY... Real County Public Library Main at Evergreen 830-232-5199 Bent Rim Grill 657 W. Ranch Rd. 337 830-232-6649

Memories of days past at Sabinal Canyon Museum

UTOPIA... Lost Maples Cafe 384 FM 187 (Main Street) 830-966-2221

UVALDE The Local Fix Coffee Shop & Cafe 2001 E. Main Street 830-900-7183


Displays at the Sabinal Canyon Museum bring the history of the area to life. Photos by Melissa Maxwell Ball. UTOPIA H Get a taste of area history at the Sabinal Canyon Museum, where you can see exhibits of early settlers, pioneer farm implements and household items, Indian artifacts and geological exhibits (including fossils and minerals from Sabinal River Canyon) and much more. FYI • The Sabinal Canyon Museum is located on Farm Market 187 in Utopia (on the west side of the road) Open Saturdays. For information, call 830-966-2100.

Utopia River Retreat Cabins 1 & 2 bEdROOm

Cozy 1 or 2 bedroom cabins, full kitchens plus microwave, heat/AC, fireplace, BBQ grill, fire rings, picnic table, satellite TV. Mesquite firewood for sale for pits/fire rings.

Vacation Rentals on the Sabinal River The Fortress

Wonderful Vacation Home Rich with History Main House Sleeps 4 to 16 people; 5 large bedroom areas & 3 - 1/2 baths. Rock fireplace, 52” satellite TV/DVD, stereo, cypress kitchen cabinets, 2 dining tables w/ cactus chandelier, patio w/ chairs, BBQ grill. For Weddings, Reunions & Other Events!

Enjoy 15 rolling acres, Giant Cypress

Party Barn

& Oak trees, Watch birds & deer at river & feeders. ¼ mile of private river front on Sabinal River, Swimming Pool for Guests. 360 PR 3850 • Utopia, Texas 78884 • 830-966-2444 • 38 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

d er v ri elights


Bear Creek

Fudge & Chocolate

Love in chocolate form!

Handmade Chocolate • Ice Cream Old Fashioned Soda Fountain • ’50s Jukebox Banana Splits • Cherry Limeades • Malts & More! Try our popular “Deer Munch Crunch!”

ABOVE LEFT Photos by Melissa Maxwell Ball. TOP & BOTTOM RIGHT Photos by Nancy Feely.

830-597-6160 •

118 South Nueces • Camp Wood, Texas 78833

Rushin’ Tea Room & Coffee Bar We

deliver! card games

& Rushin’ Tea Rummage


cappucino • freshly ground coffee espresso • gourmet tea sandwiches • bagels • pastries

dominoes board games

antiques vintage items

It’s a nice place. 830-597-4401 79 Mountain Shadow Ln. • Camp Wood Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 39



WED-SAT 10:00-5:00 CAMP WOOD 830-597-6400




Sterling Silver Jewelry

40 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Rugged beauty of the Nueces Canyon


By Jim Holder

he Nueces Canyon includes the communities of Vance, Barksdale, Camp Wood, and Montell, and surrounding rural area. The annual Old Settlers Reunion, hosted by the Nueces Canyon Chamber of Commerce, is the first Saturday in August in Camp Wood. The annual celebration begins Friday evening when students who have attended any school in the Nueces Canyon come together for a school reunion at Lindbergh Park. Saturday morning, enjoy a downtown parade with festivities continuing in Lindbergh Park. Year-round activities available in the beautiful Upper Nueces Basin Recreational Area make the area a major travel destination. Photography, camping, cycling, spelunking, hiking, birding, fishing, swimming, canoeing, kayaking, snorkeling, horseback riding, hunting, ultralite flying, hang gliding, paragliding, stargazing, searching for artifacts and

fossils, or simply relaxing in the Nueces Canyon region make for an exciting and memorable adventure. The Nueces Canyon is a travel hub to many nearby attractions, including Briscoe – Garner Museum and historic Janie Slaughter Briscoe Opera House in Uvalde, Garner State Park in Concan, Lost Maples State Natural Area near Vanderpool, the Devil’s Sinkhole State Natural Area in Rocksprings (with Mexican free-tailed bat emergence tours during summer mornings and evenings) and Kickapoo Cavern State Park near Brackettville. In Camp Wood, you will find Lindberg Park and Mission San Lorenzo de la Santa Cruz State Historic Site. An interpretive map and walking tour are available. Stop by the Chamber at 112 East Fourth Street to pick up tourist brochures for the area. There, you can learn about Charles Lindberg’s accidental trip and visit to Camp Wood. The damaged propeller

Corner Store Restaurant & Ice Cream Parlor Burgers & Chicken Tenders Made Fresh Every Day!


Full Size SALAD BAR with Soup!

201 S. Nueces Street • Camp Wood, TX 78333 Open 11 am-9 pm (Closed Mon & Tues ) • Dine-in / Carry

Stunning sunset. Photo courtesy Nueces Canyon Chamber of Commerce. from Lindbergh’s plane is also on display. The area is steeped in a rich history of sheep and

goat ranching. Local artisans still produce mohair textiles recognized interSee NUECES, page 42


Arrowhead Lodging ON THE NUECES RIVER Vacation Cabins & Guest Houses

3 BR/2 BA House 1 Bed/1 BA Cottage and 2 Beds /1 BA cabins 921 Hwy. 55 N. • Camp Wood, Tx. 830-597-4421 •

Dixie Printz

Worth the trip Boutique / Screen Printing Shop Clothing ~ Gifts ~ Jewelry ~ Home Decor

River Tees & Tanks ~ Custom Decals and more!

Located Downtown Camp Wood 119 N. Nueces 830.597.4474

Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 41

NUECES, from page 41

Beauty of nature abounds in the Nueces Canyon. Photo courtesy Nueces Canyon Chamber. nationally. Some of the best exotic and native species game hunting in the state is found in Nueces

Canyon. Whitetail deer, angora, bobcat, red stag, fallow deer, puma, javelina, Russian boar, axis deer, black buck antelope, aoudad, and Rio Grande turkeys roam the canyon. One of the best kept riding secrets of Texas, and long considered the ultimate riding roads by motorcyclists, bicyclist, car clubs, and weekend adventurists, the Three Sisters (FM roads 335, 336, and 337) 80 miles east of San Antonio in Real and Edwards Counties, takes rider through some of the prettiest, most exciting roads the state has to offer. And now, with the recently defined Big Brothers FM 334 and 674 and

State Highway 55, the riding experience becomes complete. On the Big Brothers Loop, you will discover Fort Clark Springs, the movie set where John Wayne’s movie “The Alamo” was filmed in Brackettville, Kickapoo Caverns State Park with guided tours of bat caves, and Rocksprings with historical motels and famous Edwards County Court House. Heading south to Camp Wood on Highway 55 the rider will experience impressive views and long sweeping “S” curves guaranteed to bring you back for more. Camp Wood is in the

center of the Three Sisters and the Big Brothers Loops and offers basecamps, motels, restaurants and shopping. The Upper Nueces Basin Recreation Area may just become your favorite “get-away” destination. Whether your Nueces Canyon destination is in Barksdale, Camp Wood, Montell, or Vance, we are sure you will find the perfect Hill Country hideaway, sporting adventure, restaurant delight, and Texas sized warm welcome. Hope to see you soon and often! FYI • For more information, visit the Nueces Canyon Chamber of Commerce web site at


Headwaters of the Nueces River & Travel Hub for Many Nearby Attractions

Chamber of Commerce Vance • Barksdale • Camp Wood • Montell

Nueces Canyon

Request a FREE copy of our

Nueces Canyon Travel Map! Includes Upper Nueces Basin Recreational Area

ANNUAL EVENTS Old Settlers Reunion

Downtown Camp Wood First Saturday in August (See article in this publication for more information)

Christmas in the Canyon

Downtown Camp Wood First Saturday in December

Nueces Canyon Chamber • 830-597-6241 •

42 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Saddle up for cowboy fun in nearby Bandera


National Day American

July 22nd, 2017

Only in Bandera: a Longhorn cattle drive right through town at Celebrate Bandera. Photo courtesy Celebrate Bandera.


By Genie Strickland

or generations now, Bandera has been making dreams of being a “cowboy” come true. You can ride horses, explore a dude ranch, try rope tricks, tell tales around a campfire, yee-haw at a rodeo, sit around the campfire and count the stars. If you are planning to visit just for the day, don’t miss the Bandera Cattle Company’s entertaining gun shows Saturdays at noon and at 2 pm in the back yard of the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. Kids can be deputized as official Deputies of the Bandera Cattle Company! Saturday afternoons, enjoy Cowboys on Main with horses, chuck wagons and strolling singers. Take a wagon ride through town or have your picture taken on the back of a Longhorn (mid-March through December). These include weekly rodeos all through the summer, and the Wild Hog Explosion each March.

There’s more fun at the PRCA Rodeo in May. Memorial Day weekend brings yet another celebration, featuring Funtier Days Parade and Bandera Pro Rodeo May 26-28. Bandera celebrates summer with Riverfest, where of course there is a rodeo—but on the river! The National Day of the American Cowboy is held each July. The ultimate Cowboy Event Labor Day weekend is Celebrate Bandera featuring a Longhorn Cattle Drive, Circle of Life Intertribal Powwow, and the National Professional Bull Rider’s Challenge. Holidays in Bandera include the Cowboy Capital Christmas, with a night parade, Shoppers Jubilee, lighted trees and displays in City Park, Singing in the Saddle (caroling from horseback and wagon). FYI • For more information and complete details about these and many other Bandera events and attractions, visit the web site at

Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 43

Plenty of fun 2017 events planned in Uvalde County


Amy’s Attic


A fun and affordable boutique that offers gifts and home decor for Moms, her daughters & friends


Mon-Sat • 10 am-5:30 pm

116 N. Getty St. • Uvalde

Antiques • Vintage Collectibles Quilts • Books Baubles • Gifts 830-900-7083 • Monday-Saturday 10-5

120 North Getty • Uvalde, Texas Tammy Hilderbran, owner | Stephanie Atkinson | Kay Brieden Hollie Gilleland | Sarah Hensarling | Rick & Lisa Taylor

Antiques, Vintage, Gifts Home Decor & Much More!

exas Hill Country River Region is a place of simple pleasures – home to breathtaking chalk cliffs, three crystal-clear rivers and a canopy of ancient Cypress trees. Visitors can unlock the magic of uninterrupted time with loved ones in this secluded oasis that truly lets you get away from it all while enjoying some of the best entertainment and festivals in Hill Country, plus the opportunity to experience outdoor adventure like no other. Year-round, enjoy fishing on the Frio, Nueces or Sabinal Rivers; inner tubing along the Frio River; hiking and biking at Garner State Park; horseback riding and hunting; and dining at any of the local’s favorites spots, including the Laurel Tree’s intimate treehouse, Concan Pies, Nora’s Tacos

and Neal’s Dining Room. And, don’t miss the Frio Bat Tour (typically open between March and October), where you can experience the world’s second-largest bat population open to the public as the bats fly right over your head and into the Hill Country sunset. Here, some of the 2017 events you can enjoy: FOUR SQUARE FRIDAY (Every second Friday) Enjoy late night shopping from 6 pm to 9 pm, food, live music and art in historic downtown Uvalde. 830-278-4115. FREEDOM FEST BBQ COOK-OFF (March 3-4) Enjoy a BBQ cook-off to end all BBQ cook-offs at Frio County Campground in Concan, Texas. Enjoy an evening cabin crawl, a bake-off, horseshoe. and washer contests, See EVENTS, page 45

Uvalde Once Upon a Time

114 W. Main • Uvalde, Texas


Wed-Fri 11 am-5:30 pm & Sat 10 am-5 pm

44 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Park at Andy’s on River Road and get a ride to the river in Concan on the “Cool Bus.” Photo courtesy

EVENTS, from page 44

Rio Frio Fest ‘s Crawfish Boil is a big hit with these diners. Photo courtesy authentic Hill Country BBQ, and a silent auction and raffle benefitting the Concan Volunteer Fire Department.

RIVER ROAD MARKET FEST (March 4, May 6, October 7, December 16; 10 am to 6 pm) Head over to Andy’s on River Road for this

street-style market popup featuring live music and entertainment, local artisan shopping and food vendors and more. The May 6 festival will feature a special Cinco de Mayo celebration; October’s will include pumpkin patch for kids; December’s event will welcome a special appearance from Santa. SABINAL MARDI GRAS GUMBO COOK-OFF (March 4, 10 am to 6 pm) Head downtown Sabinal to Rustic Charm for a Mardi Gras celebration, featuring live Cajun music, a classic gumbo cook-off and live music 12 pm to 4 pm. RIO FRIO FEST (March 14-18) Forget Florida or Mexico,

head to Texas’ beautiful Hill Country for the ultimate five-day Spring Break music festival. Get in the “Texas State of Mind” with a nonstop line-up of concerts and activities, like tubing the crystal-clear Frio River, Texas crawfish boils, hog sacking, helicopter rides over the chalk cliffs and more. RIVER ROCK FEST AT NEAL’S (March 31-April 1) Enjoy live music from Back in Black, an ACDC tribute band, on Friday evening, followed by a performance by Atomic Punks, a Van Halen tribute band, Saturday. Enjoy poker runs, games, contests, and more. See EVENTS, page 46


“Service you deserve. People you trust.” Agents

Stephanie Sieckenius Denise Rogers Jennifer Suarez Raul Zamora Gene Evans Lacie Huddleston

830-591-6658 830-591-7471 830-279-6923 210-912-1964 830-486-9682 830-279-8825


OPEN 9:00-5:00

Stephanie Sieckenius/Broker

131 E. Nopal Uvalde, TX 78801


Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 45

Local Churches CAMP WOOD Nueces Canyon Church of Christ

1656 N. Hwy 55 830-597-4131.

First Baptist Church

813 South Nueces. 830-597-5150.

Hill Country Church of Christ

Hwy. 55 North. 830-597-6175.

St. Mary Magdalene Catholic Church

311 E. 3rd. 830-597-5165.


Church of Christ

Hwy. 83 at the Y. 830-232-4058.


New Beginning

5749 Ranch Rd. 1120. 830-232-5221.


Central Christian

512 N. Center Street. 830-988-2751. Church of Christ

204 N. Center Street. 830-988-2725.

First Baptist Church.

607 N. San Antonio. 830-988-2344.

St. Patrick’s Catholic

501 N. Orange St. 830-988-2255.

Concan Baptist Mission

Trinity Temple Church

Emmanuel Lutheran

United Methodist

32711 Hwy 83 830-232-4411.

2561 Co. Rd 350 830-232-4006.


Church of Christ

3rd Street. 830-232-6933.

108 W. Rheimer Ave. 830-988-2927. 200 W. Fisher Ave. 830-988-2535.

UTOPIA Gospel Tabernacle

724 Hwy 83. 830-232-6841.

371 Main St. 830-966-2440.

Hwy. 83 N. 830-232-5344.

FM 1050. 830-966-2426.

Church in the Valley First Baptist Church

Living Waters Church

Frio Canyon Baptist Church

United Methodist

200 Cypress. 919 Hwy. 83 S. 830-232-5883 830-966-3400. Réal County Church of Christ

Utopia Baptist Church

St. Raymond Catholic

Utopia Church of Christ

121 Oak Hill, Ste. 4 830-275-9661

2nd Ave.830-232-5852

241 Johnson St. 830-966-3688.

Trinity Fellowship

Main Street. 830-966-3629.

Leakey United Methodist Church


E. on 337. 830-232-6770. 410 N. Market. 830-232-6266.

EVENTS, from page 45

St. Mary’s Catholic

Hwy 187. 830-966-6268.

46 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

Pitch a tent, the campin’s fine! Photo courtesy SABINAL WILD HOG FEST (March 31-April 2) Annual event at Sabinal City Park features wild hog chasing, arts, crafts, games, rides and BBQ. EASTER TEJANO FEST (April 14, 6 pm to 12 am) Fest kicks off with a Fish Fry on the Frio River, featuring a concert at House Pasture fun for the whole family. 3rd ANNUAL TIPSY CRAWDAD GOLF TOURNEY & MUDBUG BOIL (Dates TBA, late-April) Four-person golf scramblestyle tournament at Golf Club of Texas Concan. Guests can enjoy raffle prizes, keg beer, a cash bar and a crawfish boil to follow. Weekend-stay packages are available by calling 830-232-4471. BUD PRIDDY FLY FISHING TOURNAMENT (May 6) Enjoy weekend fly fishing tournament, hosted by Alamo Fly Fishers of San Antonio, along the Nueces River. Catered awards banquet Saturday, May 6, at Big Oak River Camp. 15th ANNUAL UTOPIA

RANCH RODEO & DANCE (May 28, 7 pm, Utopia Park Arena) This authentic Texas rodeo is sure to amaze with wild cow milking, branding, bronc riding, penning and mugging. A dance follows. ANNUAL FISHING DERBY (June 3) At Uvalde National Fish Hatchery from 8 am to noon. 830-278-2419. UTOPIA FIREWORKS (July 4) Celebrate Independence Day at Utopia Park with annual fireworks display and parade. JULY JAM FEST (July 4) Details to be announced. FRIO RIVER TRASH BASH (First Saturday after Labor Day) Help Texas Hill Country River Region preserve its beauty for years to come. Participants can kayak, swim, inner tube or walk along the upper Frio River while picking up trash, followed by a free BBQ cook-out (with prizes for volunteers!). See EVENTS, page 47

EVENTS, from page 46

Floating the Frio. Photo courtesy 9th ANNUAL UTOPIAFEST (September 22-24) Unplug at family-friendly camp-out with musical performances in natural amphitheater on lovely Four Sisters Ranch. FALL ON THE FRIO BBQ COOK OFF (October 7) Washer and horseshoe tourneys, pumpkin patch, and fall family photo opportunities at House Pasture Cattle Company. HAUNTED HAYRIDES (late-October, dates to be announced) Take a scary hayride at Neal’s, narrowly escape spooky encounters with ghosts and spirits, then enjoy live music. UTOPIA FALL ARTS & CRAFTS FAIR (First Saturday in November)

Looking for

52nd annual fair features more than 60 booths with handmade goods at Utopia Town Square. NEAL’S DINING ROOM THANKSGIVING FEAST (November 23) Take the day off from cooking, have dinner at Neal’s Dining Room, famous for the annual feast and warm Southern hospitality. CHRISTMAS LIGHTS CELEBRATION Details to be announced. UVALDE’S CHRISTMAS HISTORIC HOME TOUR (December 2017) Call El Progreso Memorial Library at 830-278-2017 for more information. FYI • Find more information about events in Uvalde County on the web site at

Live Music?

House Pasture Cattle Co. River Road in Concan • 830-232-6580

Joe Jimmy’s at Neal’s Lodges 20970 Hwy 127 • Concan • 830-232-6118

Corner Store 201 S. Nueces Downtown Camp Wood • 830-597-3380 Friends Grill 153 Hwy. 83 South (across from Courthouse) • Leakey • 830-232-6301 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 47

Specialized Care. Local Convenience.

You can count on us for the specialized care you need, with the local convenience you deserve. • • • • • • • •

24-Hr. Emergency Service Hospice Respiratory Care Laboratory Outpatient Specialty Clinic Rehabilitation Center Inpatient & Outpatient Surgery Hyperbaric Therapy & Wound Care

• • • • • • • • •

Medical & Surgical Services Intensive Care Unit Women’s & Newborns’ Center Radiology/Diagnostic Imaging Women’s Imaging Center Social Services Senior Behavioral Health Services Sleep Center Air Transport Capability

Uvalde Memorial Hospital 1025 Garner Field Road • Uvalde, TX 78801 • (830) 278-6251 •

48 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017


in Camp Wood...

Candy, Bear Creek Fudge & Chocolate Fudge & Hwy. 55 Downtown More 830-597-6160 Ice Cream, Corner Store Restaurant Baked Goods 201 S. Nueces St. & more 830-597-3380 Baked Rushin’ Tea Room Goods 79 Mountain Shadow Lane & Coffee 830-597-4401

in Rio Frio...

Baked Bonnie’s Bakery Goods On US Hwy 83, 1.5 miles past Garner State Park 830-232-5582

in Concan...

Baked Concan Pies Goods TX Hwys 83 & 127 713-562-8043

Ice Cream Frio’s Dry 50 by the scoop Tx. Hwy. 127 830-232-6300

Gelato, Josh’s Coffee & US Hwy 127 & 83 More 830-232-4343

Coffee Shop and Cafe

Serving fresh coffee, food, drinks and desserts daily WIFI • DAILY SPECIALS • GELATO • BEER & WINE • JUICES 2001 E. Main Street | Uvalde, TX 78801 830-900-7183 |

Join me today for Forties’ Style Fun and Fabulous Food at Hangar 6 Air Cafe

Just Plane Good! Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner 249 Airport Blvd. • Uvalde, TX 78801

Call 830-900-3113 or visit

“Serving the Hill Country for over 110 years.”

Pies Frio Farm Pie Shop 500 CR 348


in Leakey...

BBGs Bakery Baked 279 Mountain Street Goods 830-232-5703

Pies & Friends Grill Ice 153 Hwy 83 South Cream 830-232-6301

in Utopia...

Baked Lost Maples Cafe Goods 384 FM 187/Main Street 830-966-2221

in Uvalde...

Espresso, The Local Fix Gelato, 384 FM 187/Main Street Coffee, More 830-966-2221

Visit us at

24/7 ATMs

at all of our Hill Country locations

CAMP WOOD • LEAKEY SABINAL • UTOPIA MEMBER FDIC 830.278.6231 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017 49

Shop our large selection of Swimsuits * Board shorts Sandals * Custom T’s Summer Apparel & More! We have Tube Rentals!

50 Welcome to the Hill Country River Region 2017

For all your Frio needs!

Fuel & Diesel • Specialty Meats T-Shirts • Hot Deli • Pizza Firewood • Tubes • Swimwear Open 7 Days a Week Year Round!


@ intersection of Highways 83 & 127 in Concan

Mill Wheel on the Nueces Guest Cottages Vacation Time in Beautiful Camp Wood, Texas!

P.O. Box 279 • Camp Wood, TX 78833 For more information, call 830-597-4411

Woodbine Inn For a peaceful stay, this is the place!

214 S. Nueces St. • Camp Wood, TX 78833 For more information, call 830-597-2310

For more information, visit us online at


River Rim Resort, a hidden gem in the Texas Hill Country, provides guests with a cluster of cabins accented with a European flair and ten shady RV sites. The Spring at the Rim, a beautifully landscaped complex with pool and patio area, is a charming venue for private parties, wedding receptions, family reunions or corporate retreats. The Rim and its five sister resorts offer a signature style of accommodations. These resorts are open all year and provide the perfect home away from home getaways.

River Rim Resort

1204 CR 350

I ndian Springs Lodges 1586 CR 348

RiverGate Cabins 2020 CR 350

Lost Canyon Retreat Edge 2785 RR 1050 The Overlook at River’s 2039 CR 350

River’s Edge Cabins 2039 CR 350

RiverStone Cabins 89 Roy Chisum Rd, Leakey, TX

Frio’s North Star 883 CR 350

830-232-5758 • • Elevate your experience in the majestic Frio Canyon with Frio Premier Rentals, Concan’s finest vacation homes. These lovely private homes offer the utmost in comfort so you can make unforgettable memories. Many of these homes feature private swimming pools and private river access.

1204 CR 350 Concan, Texas VISIT US ON

830-232-4935 •

Texas Hill Country River Region Guide, 2017  

Welcome to the Texas Hill Country River Region... your guide to dining, lodging, events, things to do and more in Concan, Camp Wood, Leakey,...

Texas Hill Country River Region Guide, 2017  

Welcome to the Texas Hill Country River Region... your guide to dining, lodging, events, things to do and more in Concan, Camp Wood, Leakey,...