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Day Trippin': Christmas in the Hill Country

By APRILL BRANDON
Nov. 29, 2010 at 5:29 a.m.
Updated Dec. 1, 2010 at 6:01 a.m.

Fredericksburg

OTHER THINGS TO DO IN THE AREA: Fredericksburg: Get an early jump on your weekend by going to check out Fredericksburg's First Friday Art Walk on, naturally, Friday.

Seven art galleries have joined together to bring this monthly event, which lasts from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and includes a full day of events. In addition to the local, national and international art on display, each gallery is serving local wine from the area wineries, Becker Vineyards and Grape Creek Vineyards. Some locations are also offering entertainment.

For more information, go to www.fbgartwalk.com.

Talk about more bang for your buck. Or in this case, more bang for your gas money.

A whopping 11 communities are participating in the Texas Hill Country Regional Christmas Lighting Trail this year. From now until New Year's, you can take a nice leisurely drive through central Texas and check out festive lighting displays and free Christmas-y activities in any or all of the following towns: Boerne, Burnet, Dripping Springs, Fredericksburg, Goldthwaite, Johnson City, Kerrville, Llano, Marble Falls, New Braunfels and Wimberley.

Each community offers a variety of special events during the holiday season in addition to their elaborate holiday displays, according to the website, www.tex-fest.com. For instance, New Braunfels will offer Caroling on the Plaza downtown on Dec. 16. Kerrville will have Christmas Like it Used To Be from Dec. 17-23, where local artisans will present the sights and sounds of the season at the Bank of the Hills. Visitors can expect a roaring fireplace, cider, eggnog and fresh-baked cookies ... for FREE! Dripping Springs will have the 6th annual Christmas on Mercer Street on Dec. 4, which includes more than 70 vendors, live entertainment and food.

To make the most of your day, or days if you want to make it a weekend trip, a complete list of events can be found at www.tex-fest.com/regional, where you can make sure you hit up as many seasonal activities as possible.

Added bonus? Most of the towns' shops and restaurants keep special longer hours during the holidays.

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