Three years ago, in 2010, the Blanco Chamber of Commerce added Blanco to the Hill Country Trail of Lights Brochure. For several years Keep Blanco Beautiful had decorated the Pecan Bottom and Bindseil Park as well as the city properties for Christmas. We had a vision of Blanco having a “Trail of Lights” so tour busses and people would not just bypass Blanco or their way to other towns with more to see. We started enlarging our vision and had been adding to our decorations in the Bindseil Park and Pecan Bottom each year.
When Blanco was added to the Hill Country Trail of Lights Brochure we knew that we needed to be proud of our “Trail”. We had something to be proud of when it was finished. Blanco is now a destination for Christmas visitors from all over the US and many from other countries. Now they stop to see our Christmas lights. They now get out of their cars and walk around the Blanco Historic Square and through the “Trail of Lights” and shop or eat and listen to music or visit Santa.
A Christmas Committee was formed with KBB, OBCCPS, Uptown Blanco, The Chamber of Commerce, the merchants, Dennis Moore Carriages, and Roxie Avants started organizing night parades. The City of Blanco supports looking for new ways to have more volunteers and workers to help with improving and enlarging “Christmas in Blanco” in the future. We will need to enlarge, not only our plan, but also our committee and volunteer base.
KBB volunteers start checking the scenes and lights the middle of October to make sure everything is working. This takes time and volunteers. By the last week of October PEC brings their trucks to put the lights up into the trees in the parks, the OBCCPS courtyard, and the city decorations along the streets and highways. The FCCLA and LEOS from Blanco High School come several times prior to the lighting to wrap the tree trunks and put the lights into the shrubs and on to the buildings. Our goal is always to have everything up and ready on November 15, but we are always working up to the very last minute on the Friday night after Thanksgiving for the lighting ceremony.
Once this is done and we have held our “Lighting” festivities then we work for 6 weeks every night and day on the maintenance to make sure everything is working. Shortly after January 1 the same groups begin to take the scenes and lights down, pack them in boxes and take them back to storage until the next October. Today is January 18, and the only thing left is for PEC to take the lights out of the trees and we will wrap them in balls, pack them and take them to storage. This also takes a lot of volunteers.
I would like to thank the KBB volunteers, Blanco Public Works employees, The Blanco Volunteer Fire Department, the FCCLA class, the Leos, and PEC for all of the hard work that they have done to make “Christmas in Blanco“ such a wonderful place to come and celebrate. I also want to thank the OBCCPS volunteers for all that they do to decorate the courthouse and grounds and make it so pretty.
Please consider joining in these efforts by volunteering. More articles will follow with contact information as we work with helping the City of Blanco and Blanco Chamber of Commerce to reorganize the plans.