From the creek meandering through the town, to the dozens of unique shops and eateries, spend some time in paradise.

Walk through the streets of Salado and see this small town sitting at the edge of the Texas Hill Country come alive with the panache it’s been known for over the years.

From small shops, to fine art galleries, great restaurants, exclusive amenities and much more, Salado provides a destination stop for people wanting to get away from the busy city life while enjoying the serene surroundings. Salado is located in southern Bell County, just south of Belton, conveniently situated between Austin and Dallas on Interstate-35.

Salado’s roots began as a stop on a stage route and an inn built to offer rest for weary travelers. Its stately live oaks and tree lined creeks and streams make it an inviting stop, and has drawn peo

ple to its clear waters for centuries. It began in earnest in 1859 when the Salado College was founded. Salado already was a popular stop on the Old Military Road crossing across Salado Creek, and the Stagecoach Inn. The creek provided water and also industry as it powered several mills in the Salado area while the college provided for the higher educational needs of the families. The college operated until 1885; a private high school operated in the building until 1913. Today, the ruins of the college remain upon the hillside overlooking the village of Salado.

Throughout the decades the Stagecoach Inn has attracted people to the village, these days it is being revitalized to once again be a centerpiece of the community. Today, though, Salado has so much to see and do with its numerous boutiques, but it also boasts an ample supply of bed and breakfasts, inviting visitors to experience life at a more leisurely pace

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Salado also goes all out for Christmas. Stop by this year for Salado’s annual Christmas Stroll, held Dec. 1-3; then 8-10. Visitors are urged to shop all day and night while visiting the more than 100

businesses that call Salado home. Food and drink at local establishments and from various vendors will p

rovide varied and delicious offerings. Music can be found in the Village and in many merchants with strolling carolers and instrumentalists. The stores are open late on Friday and Saturday.

It all starts at 6 p.m. on Nov. 30 with the Salado Christmas Parade. The parade features floats, bands and much more as the town puts its best small-town foot forward as it travels down Main

Street, after the parade Santa Claus will make a v

isit to the Salado Fire Department.

On Dec. 1-3 Salado’s Historical Society holds its annual Tour of Homes. The annual event features some of Salado’s most beautiful sites. This year it includes three h

omes, two chapels, a Masonic Lodge, the LBJ/Baines family museum and the Salado Historical Cabins. Tickets can be purchased at the Salado Visitor Center, call (254)947-5040 for more information. No photographs are allowed inside the home.

The churches on the tour include Saint Joseph’s Episcopal Chapel, located at 881 North Main St. The other church is the historic Salado Methodist Church Chapel located at 650 Royal, east of Salado. The church began in 1850, while the chapel is not that old, it’s still a beautiful, historic church edifice and is a part of the tour sure to get visitors in the Christmas spirit. The Christmas Tour of Homes runs from 5-8 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 1; 10 a.m. t

o 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2; and from 1-4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 3.

First Baptist Church Salado holds their Living Nativity both weekends of the Salado Stroll, so attend this special event to understand the real reason Christmas is celebrated around the world.

That’s a lot to take in, but that’s not all as Tablerock Amphitheater, Salado’s famed acting troop, presents Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” The shows will be held both weekends of the Salado Christmas Stroll. This is the 25th installment of what has become an annual event in Salado. So, sitting in the beautiful surroundings of the theater and relive t

he story of Scrooge and his visit from three ghosts that set him on the path of a righteous man.

Aside from all the Christmas eve

nts Salado has something noteworthy throughout the town, every block, every corner has a landmark of some sort.

Take the Sage Hill Market, located on the north side of Salado Creek, is one of the oldest buildings in Salado, with one room originally built in the 1830s. The Vickrey/Berry House’ began to take on its current form with new additions in the 1870s, with other parts of the house being added over the

following decades. The Berry family was the third to occupy the historic home.

The Vickrey family became prominent in Salado in the years after the Civil War, and much of its success is due to the family.

Current owner, and operator of Sage Hill Market, Julia Broadway, has worked to keep the old building true to its historic past, like many business owners across this historic little town along Interstate-35. The house has received a few upgrade here and there over the years, but the floors are still original, the walls re in their rightful places, about the only major structural work that had to be done on the old building was to refurbish and restore the old home’s chimneys, which are now functional. The goal through it all was to keep the home as original as possible.

Dozens and dozens of historic homes line the streets and countryside around Salado, including the beautiful Rose Mansion, located off of Royal Street, just a few blocks east of Main Street. The house and its outbuildings are truly a step back into another time and place in the history of this region of Texas.

Salado has so much to see and do, whether it’s surrounded by the Christmas holidays, or just a place to stop and unwind for a weekend — or more. Salado also is home to Mill Creek Country Club, a golf course designed by famed golf course architect Robert Trent Jones. Salado truly does have something for everyone.

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To learn more about all the things to see and do in and around Salado, visit www.salado.com to get an idea of this amazing town.

 

Story by WAYNE STEWART

Photography by CHRISTINA STEWART & Linda Moffett