'Winter Texans' Begin Arriving in Texas Community
As local rivers cool down and gray clouds float above, summertime visitors have given way to another group of annual vacationers in New Braunfels, Texas.
Using planes, trains and lots and lots of recreational vehicles, many so-called “Winter Texans” will call New Braunfels home for as long as several months, according to the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung.
Just as thousands of “Snowbirds” migrate from New York to the warmer climates of Florida, this area’s out-of-towners tend to come from the colder northern regions of the United States.
Generally, Winter Texans tend to be retirement-age, empty nesters with the resources to own – or rent – homes in different parts of the United States.
Most have no desire to shovel snow, so travelling around Texas during the colder weather is a happier and warmer option.
For some, it may even make financial sense. They don’t have to deal with high energy or heating bills.
As many have the means to meander around the Lone Star State, it’s hard to quantify exactly how many Winter Texans stay in New Braunfels and the surrounding areas.
However, many part-time locals are retired military personnel who take advantage of the region’s three area military installations, including Randolph Air Force Base, which is near Schertz in neighboring Guadalupe County.
For those who do bring their homes with them, Winter Texans have a choice of several local RV parks to choose from, including Hill Country and River Ranch RV resorts, both in New Braunfels.
Although many Winter Texans come to New Braunfels to escape the frigid winters, for others, giving back to their adopted community is a much a part of their way of life as it is in their home states.
One such volunteer group consists of more than a dozen women who stay at the Hill Country RV Resort.
For the past several years, the group has raised enough money to knit hundreds of blankets for badly wounded burn victims or amputees who are recovering at the Warrior and Family Support Center at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio.
For those who left their homes – and perhaps their worries about the weather – behind, many other options exist when it comes to finding a place to stay.
Schlitterbahn Resort is open all year-round – and while the water park is closed (except during the annual Hill Country Christmas event) the resort does rent out rooms on property.
The Canyon Lake Chamber of Commerce web site also offers a “Lodging Quick Reference” page to find the ideal location to temporarily call home for the winter months.
In addition, realizing the economic impact that Winter Texans have on the area, Canyon Lake will again host its annual Winter Texan Reception.
The event, scheduled for 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 18, will include more than 30 local businesses promoting awareness of the diverse services offered to Winter Texans, including river outfitters, local eateries and the city library and hospital.
The 2010 reception is scheduled to take place at the Community Resource and Recreation Center, which is below Canyon Dam at 125 Mabel Jones Drive in Canyon Lake.