Hangar Hotel

Strains of Glenn Miller’s Moonlight Serenade softly compliment the evening’s last light as Hangar Hotelwe sip cocktails on the veranda.  The sun appears as a glowing orange orb resting on the hilltops as a Cessna makes its landing approach on the airfield in front of us.  Now, Chattanooga Choo Choo entertains us with its upbeat melody.  Closing our eyes, we travel decades into the past.  Such is the mood set by a stay at the Hangar Hotel in Fredericksburg.

Officers’ Club. Staying at the Hangar Hotel is like stepping back in time to a Bachelor Officer Quarters from World War II.  A converted hangar on the edge of Gillespie County Airport houses this elegantly simple hotel.  Large ceiling fans, antique switchboard, and palm trees greet guests as they check in.  Off the hotel lobby is the Officer’s Club, open weekends.   Rooms are furnished in rusty reds, mossy greens and rich browns.  Weathered leather chairs, vintage style dresser and armoire furnish the room.  Every detail, from drapery pattern to reproduction phone, transports you back in time.  The black and white tiled bathroom completes the setting.  There is even a green, wool army blanket on the bed.  The room television is the only concession to the 21st century.

Details. The Hangar Hotel is located at 155 Airport Road, Fredericksburg. Room rates begin at $119 (weekdays) and $179 (weekends). The hotel offers senior (over 65) and military discounts.  To make a reservation, call (830) 997-9990 or visit the hotel website at hangarhotel.com.


Autumn at the Arboretum

Dubbed Pumpkin Capital USA, Floydada farmers grow over 15 million pumpkins each year. To celebrate the bountiful harvest, Floydada hosts Punkin Days the second weekend in October.

Did you miss Punkin Days?  Never fear, you can still see 65,000 Flyodada pumpkins and assorted squash at the Dallas Arboretum.

Fall colors.  Autumn is ideal for exploring the arboretum. During the seasonal, Autumn at the Arboretum, pumpkins line the walkways, North Texas Ramblings Pumpkins Dallas Arboretumhay bales anchor 10-foot tall arrangements of plants and squash, and mums burst with color in the floor beds.  Who knew, squash came in so many different shapes and colors.

Pumpkin Village. Be sure to check out Pumpkin Village, a series of storybook cottages with pumpkin facades.  I’ve never seen so many pumpkins in one place before. Designed after pumpkin-themed children’s stories, kids love exploring each of the playhouses. And of course, there is Cinderella’s carriage pulled by straw horses! On the outskirts of Pumpkin Village, you’ll find more hay bales, this time outlining a two-foot high maze, ideal for the littlest of explorers.

Especially for kids. During Mom and Me Mondays, and Tiny Tot Tuesdays, Pumpkin North Texas Ramblings Pumpkin Village Dallas ArboretumVillage rocks!  In addition to exploring the storybook cottages, youngsters can feed goats at the petting zoo, get their faces painted, and participate in Kindermusik activities.

Details:  Autumn at the Arboretum runs September 20 through November 26.  Mom and Me Monday and Tiny Tot Tuesday activities are held 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Dallas arboretum is located at 8525 Garland Road, Dallas.  The Dallas Arboretum is open daily 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

More on the arboretum…..

Big Orange Pumpkin Farm

It’s pumpkin time!

North Texas Ramblings PumpkinIf you are looking for a Fall family outing, why not try the Big Orange Pumpkin Farm. While it’s not far from north Dallas suburbs, the Big Orange Pumpkin Farm is far from busy highways and strip malls. Located in rural Celina, a trip to the farm makes for a relaxed, low-key afternoon in the country.

The Big Orange Pumpkin Farm has a little something for everyone. Kids can feed the farm’s goats, chickens and longhorn cattle. Your admission also includes a hayride around the farm’s perimeter. For an additional fee, children (and small adults) can ride the train (a tractor with barrels made into train cars). Try your hand at lassoing a “longhorn” sawhorse in the roping corral or find your way through the maze. While the pumpkins are not grown on the farm, the little ones will still enjoy picking out their pumpkin from the patch.

Be sure to bring your camera. The farm is a great spot for family picture taking.

Details. The Big Orange Pumpkin Farm is open seven days a week through November 2. Admission is $8. Weekday admission includes a feed cup for the animals, hayride and a small pumpkin. Weekend admission includes feed cup, hayride and hot dog. The Big Orange Pumpkin Farm is at 5518 County Road 126, Celina (972-382-4995.