Celebrations There is never a lack of reasons to celebrate in Fredericksburg! With more than 300 annual festivals, fairs and special events, visitors and residents have plenty to see and do.
The Chamber Lighted Christmas Parade and St. Nikolausmarkt, which are sponsored by the Fredericksburg Chamber of Commerce, are held the first Friday in December, in recognition of the German tradition of St. Nikolaus who filled children’s shoes, left by the front door, with treats. The parade, which included a record 105 lighted entries in 2012, takes place along Fredericksburg’s historic Main Street and includes special features such as a laser light show, oversized mascots and St. Nik himself! While the events are both free, tickets may be purchased for dedicated bleacher-style parade seating. Following the parade, St. Nikolausmarkt glistens brightly on Marktplatz with local foods and wine, children’s activities, holiday shopping, entertainment and free photos with St. Nikolaus.
Fredericksburg is in the center of the Texas Hill Country’s wine industry and the Fredericksburg Food & Wine Fest literally celebrates the fruits of the industry’s labor! Taking place the fourth Saturday in October each year, attendees may enjoy food and wine sampling, cooking classes, the Great Gargantuan Grape Toss, live music and wonderful auction.
Night In Old Fredericksburg (NIOF), which was sponsored by the Fredericksburg Chamber of Commerce on the third weekend in July. NIOF, which was originally conceived as a fundraiser to send the high school marching band to an out of state competition, has grown into a local favorite. Locally made sausage, fresh-picked peaches and Texas made wines and brews are just the beginning of the delicious treats to be found. Shop a selection of handcrafted gifts and listen to classic German polka music or the distinct sounds of Texas country. And there are always fun activities for the kids.
The Gillespie County Fair, the oldest, continuous fair in the state of Texas. The fair promises a great lineup of events – carnival and midway, delicious fair food, livestock exhibits in the show barn, agriculture and household exhibits, arts and crafts booths, antique tractor shows, live pari-mutuel horse racing, and dancing under the stars to live music. Don’t miss this chance to be part of history!
Celebrating the community’s strong German heritage, Oktoberfest takes place the first full weekend of October. One of Fredericksburg’s largest and most popular annual events, Oktoberfest offers three days of German music, a chicken dance around the square, delectable food and unique shopping. The event hosts, Pedernales Creative Arts Alliance, use proceeds to fund a variety of programs and activities to showcase and perpetuate the arts in Fredericksburg.
There are many more happenings year-round in Fredericksburg and throughout Gillespie County, including many festivities at member wineries, attractions, restaurants and other venues. For a complete list, visit our comprehensive events calendar at www.fredericksburg-texas.com.
Live Music With its growing nightlife scene, Fredericksburg is home to multiple venues that host live music practically every night of the week. Regional and national artists play at local establishments and annual music festivals. Family friendly shows are available and adults can choose from an abundance of venues to enjoy a drink.
The Auslander Biergarten and Restaurant has been a popular Main Street establishment. Offering authentic German cuisine, guests can enjoy a wonderful meal while listening to live music performed in the outdoor biergarten. Live acts are featured each Thursday through Sunday.
Crossroads Saloon and Steakhouse offers live music each Friday and Saturday night, with occasional performances on Thursdays as well. Guests can toast the night at the full-bar lounge, complete with a wooden dance floor, or enjoy some fresh air on the enclosed patio with its fireplace and flat screen televisions. Gourmet fare, including mouth-watering steaks, is served in the beautiful dining room.
Hill Top Café, which makes its home in a former filling station just 11 miles west of Fredericksburg, is known as a place where food and music-lovers gather to enjoy the scrumptious fare, unique Hill Country ambiance and great Texas music. Here dinner is accompanied by live music on Thursday through Saturday, and sometimes on Sundays.
For traditional Texas food and live Texas music, Hondo’s on Main, named after the famed Hondo Crouch, is the place to go. Located in a historic gun cap factory, even the atmosphere is steeped in history with its limestone walls, wooden stage with old-time hand-painted curtain and all-weather courtyard. Live music is performed Friday through Sunday and songwriter showcases are offered on Thursdays. The menu features donut burgers, stacked enchiladas, and other bar food. Along with the full bar, no one leaves hungry or thirsty.
Luckenbach Texas is an 18th century dance hall that has been dubbed the “Best in Texas.” With festivals most every month, the live music brings a laid back state of mind and daily impromptu music performances are common around the outdoor “picker’s circles.” Originally established as a trading post, Luckenbach Texas now hosts a dance every weekend. Remember, “Everybody is Somebody in Luckenbach!”
Blues Monday and live music all day on Friday is what ropes people into Silver Creek Beer Garden and Grille, and a delicious menu of diverse dishes keeps them coming back for more. Guests can enjoy the Main Street biergarten under the shade of a huge Bodark tree, cool off in the limestone-walled dining rooms or celebrate under the stars on the large second floor deck in back. Live music takes place all week long, including during weekday lunches.
Theater The city’s emerging art scene and nightlife blend perfectly within Fredericksburg’s two theaters. Both offer outstanding performances year-round ranging from traditional to modern.
The Fredericksburg Theater Company, housed in the Steve W. Shepherd Theater, creates an annual schedule of plays, musicals and events that feature both adult and child performers. The mission of the organization is to provide superior theatrical programs for regional participation and to educate, enrich and inspire. Their company’s spirited performances, with Broadway-quality sets, have earned the reputation of garnering the loudest applause in the Texas Hill Country.
Rockbox Theater provides quirky, “funtabulous,” family-friendly entertainment. The music-based shows run Fridays and Saturdays and occasional Thursdays and Sundays and change each week! Talented Texas musicians perform everything from Stevie Ray Vaughn and ZZ Top to Buddy Holly and Willie Nelson during shows laced with comedic themes.
Art Fredericksburg is quickly becoming one of the most popular art destinations in the United States. Dozens of galleries exhibit the finest in regional, national and international art in an impressive collection of mediums. Fredericksburg’s reputation for art is far from new. Artists like Seth Eastman, Richard Petri and Herman Lungkwitz created collections based on their Hill Country inspiration within the first few years of Fredericksburg’s founding.
Today, local galleries jointly offer the First Friday Art Walk, opening their doors from 10 a.m. through 8 p.m. and offering a blend of demonstrations, live entertainment, nibbles and wine, to this monthly event.
Some of the participating galleries include:
• Agave Gallery Fine Art • —
• Artisans at Rocky Hill • —
• Charles Beckendorf Gallery
• Cowboy Bronze Fine Art Gallery
• Fredericksburg Art Gallery
• Fredericksburg Art Guild
• InSight Gallery
• Larry Jackson Antiques & Estate Services
• RS Hanna Gallery
• River Rustic Gallery
• Whistle Pik Galleries