Things to Do

5 Ways to Enjoy Our State Parks After Dark This Holiday Season

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When most people consider a visit to a state park, they think of all of the activities to participate in that happen during daylight hours. But there are lots of fun things to do after dark as well. During the holiday season, many of the Texas State Parks open their facilities to visitors and have guided tours and holiday activities for guests.

Here are five fun state park events happening after the sun sets in the Texas Hill Country.

1. Twilight Firelight

Fanthorp Inn

Photo: Facebook/Fanthorp Inn State Historic Site – Texas Parks and Wildlife

When: November 25, 2017

Where: Fanthorp Inn State Historic Site in Anderson, Texas

Looking for something to do with the family after Thanksgiving? Why not travel back in time and discover the 1850s at Fanthorp Inn! Twilight Firelight brings the old stagecoach inn to life where visitors enjoy the ambiance of the candlelit inn, period music, dancing, mule-drawn stagecoach rides and re-enactors clad in period attire.

2. History in Lights


Photo: Facebook/Texas Parks and Wildlife – Goliad State Park

When: Recurring throughout December (check calendar for details)

Where: Goliad State Park and Historic Site

Goliad State Park invites you to visit their “History in Lights” exhibit, which will run from 6 to 10 p.m. throughout the month of December. Lights and shadows will tell the story of this remarkable site as visitors walk the same path taken by Native Americans and Spanish Franciscan Priests so long ago. Entrance fees are $3 per adult and free for children aged 12 and under.

3. Christmas At The Ranch & North Star Party

South Llano River

Photo: Facebook/South Llano River State Park – Texas Parks and Wildlife

When: December 2, 2017

Where: South Llano River State Park

Celebrate Christmas at Mr. Buck’s historic ranch home, then enjoy the starry skies! Warm up with some hot chocolate, listen to live entertainment, visit Santa, and enjoy the twinkling lights and Christmas decorations at the historic ranch house that now serves as park headquarters. Once it gets dark, enjoy the North Star party, as you look at the full moon through telescopes, and check out the amazing wintertime stars and constellations!  

4. Trail of Lights

State Parks
Photo: Facebook/Monument Hill & Kreische Brewery SHS – Texas Parks and Wildlife

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