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Christmas in Surrounding Towns

December 8, 2010
By: Monica Pena, Austin Times
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Burnet, Tx Bethlehem

The best thing about living in Central Texas during the holidays is participating in the traditions of the surrounding towns.  Whether looking for light spectaculars, visiting historic town squares decorated in holiday splendor, or visiting scenic marvels, there are plenty of options in the area.  Here are just a few of the well known places:

Marble Falls- (1 hour from Austin heading west on TX-71/US 290)  Over 1 million lights on 130 sculptures at Lakeside Park transform Lakeside Park into a holiday wonderland until January 2, 2011 from 6-10 PM every night as weather permits.  Santa visits in the weekends.

Burnet- (50 miles northwest of Austin) Journey back to Bethlehem at the time of Christ’s birth for the first two weekends in December.  Visitors will witness townspeople dressed in authentic costumes bargaining at the city market, drawing water from the well, baking bread, and paying taxes to the tax collectors.  All ages enjoy the live camels, donkeys, and other animals.

Johnson City- (48 miles west of Austin) View the 21st Annual Lights Spectacular Hill Country Style through the first of 2011 including 100,000 lights on the Blanco County Courthouse.  Pedernales Electric Coop’s Headquarters on Ave F has a lighted forest of over 1 million lights with hayrides and carriage rides.  Holiday crafts for sale on the weekends.

Cedar Park- (18 miles north of Austin) Over 50,000 lights illuminate the largest Live Oak Tree in Cedar Park. Each night through Christmas Chinati Court, located off of Sun Chase Blvd (near Cedar Park Middle School past Elizabeth Milburn Park) lights up with Christmas lights, a roaring fire pit, and hot chocolate for sale on Friday and Saturdays.  Bring a toy or buy some chocolate to help make the holidays brighter for Williamson County Brown Santa.

Pflugerville- (17 miles north of Austin) The 5th annual Holiday Stroll, Christmas Parade,  Community Tree Lighting in downtown Pflugerville on Dec 11th from 10am to 8PM including shopping, pfestival vendors, and children activities.  50 classic, custom and antique cars will be present while others participate in the Turkey Fry and watch football in the Man Cave.  Kids will line up for pictures with the ReinSteer.

Taylor-(34 miles Northeast of Austin ) Taylor will hold their Historic Homes Christmas Tour on Saturday Dec. 11th from noon to 6PM and Sunday Dec. 12th 1:30 PM – 5:30 PM  beginning at 200 N Main St.  Historic downtown decorated in their holiday flair.

Georgetown- (28.47 miles north from Austin) Shop handcrafted gifts at Handcrafts Unlimited. Breakfast and pictures with Santa will be Dec. 11th from 8am to 11am at Fire Station 1.  Learn about the past while on the Georgetown Holiday Home Tours of 5 beautifully restored historic homes decorated for the season.

Salado-(40 miles north of Austin) Late night shopping, home tours, and live nativity scene create holiday bliss. Productions to entertain everyone whether “Boughs of Folly” Comedy at Silver Spur Theater , “A Christmas Carol” at Tablerock Amphitheater, performance orchestra, carols, or vocalists.

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