Get in the holiday spirit by celebrating at a Texas State Park. Throughout the month of December, 42 state parks around Texas are hosting more than 60 holiday events including light displays, taffy pulls, a balloon glow and geocaching.
The 48th annual tree lighting at Lyndon B. Johnson State Park and Historic Site Sunday, Dec. 17, from 6-9 p.m. is a Hill Country tradition started by the president and first lady Johnson which has continued for nearly half a century. The event highlights some German holiday traditions of the region. The evening also features carolers, a live nativity, Santa Claus and refreshments. Revisit the past at the Sauer-Beckmann Living History Farm. The farm will be decorated the way families would have celebrated the holidays in the early 1900s.
In the Panhandle, Palo Duro Canyon State Park will feature a one-of-a-kind balloon glow against the backdrop of the canyon 5-8 p.m. Dec. 16. The park will have hot chocolate, festive live music and a special appearance by Santa. Kids can also create a lasting souvenir with a park-themed ornament. Entry to the park will be free with the donation of canned goods and other nonperishable food items at 4 p.m. All food items will go to the High Plains Food Bank.
The eighth annual Santa Christmas hike will be held at Wyler Aerial Tramway in El Paso 8 a.m. to noon Dec. 31. The hike will take visitors to the top of Ranger Peak where cups of hot chocolate, apple cider and coffee and a spectacular view await.
For more information about holiday activities at Texas State Parks, visit the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s website. A full calendar is available online on the TPWD calendar page.