San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

December 3rd, 2010
The Weekend: It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

120310santa

The ways of Santa are a mystery, as he will be all over the place this weekend in San Marcos, Buda, Lockhart and Gruene.

BY HAP MANSFIELD
Scene Editor

We have certainly heard all the arguments against the existence of Santa Claus.

You know the arguments. How can he make it around the world in one night? How can he be so many places at once? How can he ride around on a sleigh all night and not have chapped lips? How can he be so old and still get around? Okay, maybe you don’t ask the chapped lips one, but it is a mystery none the less.

We have no answers, except to say that he’s Santa. He’s like a superhero without the cape and the disgruntled attitude. We believe he can do all this stuff. It may seem impossible and impractical to believe in this.

However, we’ve see what all the practical people do in the world and we think there’s room for something a bit more impractical. In fact, we think the world needs it.

So, if you see Santa in one of his many forms this weekend, just be nice to him, as you never can tell. Unless you need that coal in your Christmas stocking for some reason.

You’ll wish you had flying reindeer and a magical sleigh this weekend to get to all the fun stuff there is to do. Here are just a few suggestions.

Friday, December 3

The Sights and Sounds of Christmas at San Marcos Plaza Park will open at 5:30 p.m. The lights are beautiful, the carnival is big, the food is delicious and admission is $4. Music includes the Mendez and Travis Elementary School’s choirs, Goodnight Middle School’s choruses and the Heart of Texas Chorus.

It’s good to remember that even spending $20 at an event like this, which allows you to enjoy the work of local folks, the magic of the lights and the fresh outdoor air certainly beats spending $20 to watch millionaires act out some story in a movie theater while you munch on over-buttered popcorn. You can always do that when there’s nothing else to do in town. Right now, in the spirit of the season, it’s fun to mix with fellow humans and enjoy their company.

Speaking of magical lights, the Trail of Lights is now open from 6-10 p.m. at the EmilyAnn Theatre (1101 FM 2325) with eight acres of lighted displays, hot chocolate and marshmallows for toasting. Admission is free, but a donation is always welcome to help pay the electric bills.

At 6 p.m., The Triple Crown (206 North Edward Gary Street) features the rockin’ sounds of the Callous Taoboys who, we’re sure, are having a better year than the Dallas Cowboys-ouch!

On the main stage of the Theatre Center on campus at Texas State is “A Monster Carol,” a twisted little tale of wax museum monsters who come to life and experience their own version of Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” Lest you think this is a little far-fetched, let us point out that the Dickens classic is basically a ghost story. The far-out story, too, is part of the comic charm. The curtain rises at 7 p.m. Tickets are $5 general admission and $3 for children.

More lights! The 21st Annual Dickens Christmas in Lockhart will take place in downtown Lockhart tonight starting at 7:30 p.m. The town will be decked out in its entire Victorian splendor for the event, with costumed characters ala Charles Dickens. We suppose you already know about the great barbecue there, but, if you don’t, we suggest a sausage — it’ll change your life.

The Opera House at Pioneer Town/ 7A Resort (333 Wayside Drive) in Wimberley will present “Feelin’ Alright, A 60s Rock n’ Roll Revue.” The boomers should dig the vibe and there’s plenty of vibe left for other generations, too. Tickets are $15 for adults, $8 for children aged 5-12 and $10 for senior citizens 55 and older. Children less than 5 are free. Refreshments will be served, too.

For a bit of Christmas music, head over to the First United Methodist Church (1200 County Road 1492) in Wimberley for the Wimberley Community Chorus presentation of “Holiday Traditions Old and New.” The concert is free, but donations are always appreciated.

Scott Wood and the Kyle Project is not a civic building project, but it is a band building a reputation locally. They will be at the Gray Horse Saloon (1904 RR 12) tonight at 8 p.m.

At the Wimberley Playhouse (450 Old Kyle Road), a wooden boy is learning lessons of truth, bravery and unselfishness, and he clears up that nasty case of rhinitis, too. The Wimberley Players presentation of “Pinocchio” is fun for all ages with its colorful costumes and clever songs. The play starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $18.

Paul Eason will be at the Cheatham Street Warehouse tonight (119 Cheatham Street) at 9 p.m. His voice is rich and his tunes are well wrought. We like anybody who mentions San Marcos in a song, even if it is called “Small Town Blues.” We’ve all had ’em.

The Triple Crown has its usual triple threat Friday with the Fotoelectric Effect, Loose Leaf and Black Top Ninjas. Finals week always calls for a bill like this one.

Saturday, December 4

If you’re getting up bright and early, you might want to hit Wimberley Market Days at 7 a.m. in Lions Park to snag some Christmas bargains. With more than 475 booths of all sorts of things, you’d be a mighty picky buyer to not find something to love there. The market goes until 4 p.m., if you want to sleep in.

Lockhart’s 21st Annual Dickens Christmas starts today at 9:30 a.m. There’s a plethora of things to see there today, but a short list would have to include the ice sculpture demo, the exotic animal zoo show, glass blowing, the fencing demos, the Polynesian Dancers, and the lighting of the Yule Log. Admission is free. There will be plenty to eat there, and English sweets, too.

Gosh, you may be asking, only two Christmas festivals this weekend? (Okay, maybe you weren’t asking that exactly, but we’ll pretend you were.) No, there’s more. It’s the 31st annual Budafest this weekend, too. More than 125 craft vendors right in downtown Buda. Plus, there’s a full carnival in City Park. All the food vendors are local charities, so you are actually doing good for the community, if not exactly your waistline. Admission is free. Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus will be there, too.

Santa is kept hoppin’ today, since he’s also at Gruene Christmas Market Days, albeit in the form of Cowboy Kringle. There will be 100 vendors there selling unique gifts, crafts and packaged Texas foods starting at 10 a.m. You can have your photo taken with Cowboy Kringle, get some good eats and find some fine bargains there. At 5 p.m., Gruene closes out the day with the annual town lighting. A brass band and Cowboy Kringle riding into town on horseback at 6 p.m. will delight young and old alike.

Texas State’s String Project will present its winter concert today on campus at the Music Building Recital Hall at noon. The event will feature performances by students of the community who participated in this university outreach program. Admission is free.

After the doors are locked a wax museum, what would happen if the figures came to life? Well, Madame Tussaud’s might be a cross between an awards show, a soccer game and a bloodbath, but at the wax museum in “A Monster Carol,” the wax figures have an experience you get to witness for yourself. The play, written and directed by Dwight Markham, will charm you with its amusing pathos. There will be two performances today, one at 1 p.m. and one at 4 p.m. The cast will be available after the show for a “Monster Picture Party” on stage.

There are plenty of lights to see tonight at Trail of Lights on the grounds of the EmilyAnn Theatre tonight. You could stop there before or after hitting the Sights and Sounds of Christmas in San Marcos Plaza Park. Tonight’s entertainment features the San Marcos Academy Choir, the Contemporary Cloggers and the Kris Kimura Jazz quartet, among others. Don’t forget to get a campfire biscuit and some cotton candy.

“Feeling Alright, A 60s Rock n’ Roll Revue,” will reprise today at 7:30 p.m. at the Opera House in Pioneer Town in Wimberley. There will be a whole lot of love or shakin’ goin’ on, or something like that. Lots of fun, for sure.

A holiday concert at First United Methodist Church in Wimberley will be filled with holiday songs from the Wimberley Community Chorus again tonight. The concert is free.

You will be amazed at the sheer power that Shotgun Hustler’s music delivers. You can feel the charge for yourself tonight at the Gray Horse Saloon. Shotgun is joined by Dawn Over Zero.

You can see the tale of a wooden boy who wants no strings attached in the Wimberley Players performance of “Pinocchio” at 8 p.m. at the Wimberley Playhouse. The kid’s a bit nosy, but he comes out alright in the end.

Tantra Coffeehouse (217 West Hopkins Street) has a fun double lineup tonight with the always rockin’ Buzz n’ Bangs and the riveting Chasca. The music starts at 9:30. Cover is $5.

The Triple Crown is locked and loaded with talent tonight. Word Association, Parking, Dusty Grin, Chief and Doomsday Device should take the sting out of studying for finals.

Sunday, December 5

Budafest starts up at 10 a.m. today with vendors, carnival rides and lots of yummy eats. It goes on today until 5:30 p.m.

Meanwhile, in Gruene, the holiday shopping goes on with Christmas market days starting at 10 a.m. Don’t forget to get that picture taken with Cowboy Kringle. Your mom wants it.

Antsy kids may need a good jumpy house after all this weekend excitement. At the aptly named Jumpy Place (241 Weldon Johnson Way in Kyle), bring in a can of food for the Hays County Food Bank and get a dollar off the $7 admission fee. The Sunday hours are noon to 6 p.m.

The kids will enjoy the matinee performance of “A Monster Carol” at Texas State today on the main stage of the Theatre Center. Tickets are only $5 for adults and $3 for kids. There’s nothing like live theater memories at Christmas time. Your kids will remember it fondly. There are two performances today, one at 1 p.m. and one at 4 p.m.

Another fun live theater event is the matinee of the Wimberley Players’ “Pinocchio” at 2 p.m. You and the kids will enjoy it. No lie.

For Christmas music, you could head over to the Wimberley United Methodist Church for thee Wimberley Community Chorus’ afternoon performance of “Holiday Traditions Old and New.” Admission is free. The concert starts at 3 p.m.

The Starlight Symphony Orchestra also will make with the holiday tunes at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church (6000 FM 3237) in Wimberley. Admission is free. This community symphony is a true local treasure. “A Celebration of the Season” starts at 4:30 p.m.

Today might be a good day to hit the Trail of Lights on the grounds of the EmilyAnn Theatre. This is especially true if you are going through post-Sights-and-Sounds letdown. Seeing a few lights and drinking a hot cup of cocoa will help ease your sadness at the end of the wonderful San Marcos festival. The trail is open from 6-9 p.m.

Singer-songwriter Wade Bowen will be at the Cheatham Street Warehouse tonight at 8 p.m. His songs are wonderfully crafted and his voice is smoky and beautiful. He’s joined by Sean McConnell.

Feel like singing? We’ve got you covered with open mics at both Riley’s Tavern and the Triple Crown. You could sing karaoke with host Amanda Timm at the Gray Horse Saloon, too.

If you participated in the many Christmas festivities this weekend, you may just want to put your feet up and have a cup of cocoa. We don’t blame you a bit.

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