Sundries and Novedades: November 2017

Lean in, Wildflowers, and we’ll tell you what we’ve learned of late about wild turkeys, a big award for a great city, a famous book series, and Whataburger. (Yes, Whataburger!)

We’ve sprinkled in some photos from our Instagram account, too. Give us a follow, won’t you?


Wild Texas Turkeys

Prepare to amaze your friends this Thanksgiving with facts we gobbled up about the Lone Star State’s turkey population.

For starters, they’ve got exceptional eyesight and hearing. In fact, if they could smell better, we’re told, they’d be almost impossible to harvest. They reportedly have a wide vocabulary, too. (You can hear them “talking” through sound files embedded in this story on the Visit Wimberley website.)

Hunted nearly to extinction decades ago, they’ve made a comeback– thanks in large measure to responsible landowners and more responsible hunting methods. Today the birds can be found in 223 of the state’s 254 counties. If you’re lucky, you may be able to catch a glimpse of them roadside or in an open field. One of their biggest public nesting areas is in the South Llano River State Park near Junction. (Always double-check for park closures on the park’s website especially during hunting season.)

Finally, while there are three types of turkeys found in the state, the Hill Country region is home to the Rio Grande variety (Meleagris gallopavo intermedia). Now that is something you probably wouldn’t discover by calling the famous Butterball Turkey Talk-Line, right?


Happy Thanksgiving!!! 🦃🍁🍽 #heart #cranberries #red

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For Your Bookshelf

Were you a fan of John R. Erickson’s Hank the Cowdog book series, the one featuring the world’s greatest crime-solving ranch canine? Would you like to have a  new, signed copy of one of the books to give (or get) this holiday season? If so, then hurry on over to Erickson’s website, pick out a book, and submit your order by December 15. More details here.



A Most Creative City

Have you heard? San Antonio is only the second city in the United States to receive UNESCO’s ‘Creative City of Gastronomy’ designation.

From Food and Wine earlier this month:

Announcing the city’s acceptance to the network, Visit San Antonio cited the city’s “confluence of many world cultures such as Mexican, Spanish, German and French, as well its geology and geography” and its Culinary Institute of America campus as examples of its gastronomical significance, referring to its current culinary culture as “Tex-Next.” “Travelers are increasingly seeking a destination with a robust culinary scene as a way to really get to know the heart of a city,” Casandra Matej, President & CEO of Visit San Antonio, said in a statement. “The UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy designation confirms what millions of visitors have known all along—San Antonio’s cuisine is truly unique and authentic to our region.” 

Can you guess the other city?

We thought for sure it’d be New Orleans, but we were wrong. (Here’s the answer.) Note that this is the second time that the Alamo City has received a UNESCO designation. The first came in 2015 when the city’s famous missions  were named to the World Heritage List.



Virtual Texas

If you know how to wander the Internet properly, you can turn up a lot of neat stuff about the Hill Country specifically and Texas culture in general. Some highlights we’ve discovered of late include:

• A compelling Texas Public Radio piece on how gentrification is impacting Marfa’s adobe home residents and an older story  about what Marfa’s Mexican-America population recall about the film Giant and Southwest segregation;

• Recipes for pumpkin spice pancakes, blood orange cranberry mules, and a French gingerbread martini from our friend Chef V up near Dallas;

• Where to find the late Selena Quintanilla’s new Hollywood star;

• A stunning move by Whataburger to partner with Yeti  and Kerrville’s James Avery Artisan Jewelry to create one-of-a-kind gifts showcasing their brand;

• A new ring, also by James Avery Artisan Jewelry, that reflects the wearer’s Lone Star State pride;

• And, finally a lovely list of all the wonderful things to see and do in San Antonio during the holidays.


On that last note, be sure to check out our regional calendar and forthcoming December newsletter, too, for Hill Country events. And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook