San Antonio and Waco, Texas
Mar 9-15, 2022
The third time was charmed for our Class Trip to San Antonio, first planned for 2020. San Antonio and its environs revealed a rich history and culture, from the Franciscan missions that were the city’s founding to LBJ’s beloved Hill Country origins and ranch retreat.
From our base in the historic St. Antony Hotel, where LBJ and Ladybird had their wedding reception, we headed first to Fredericksburg and a visit to the LBJ Ranch, then toured the Nimitz Museum following an inspirational presentation and Q&A by General Michael Hagee, Ret., former Commandant of the Marine Corps, arranged by Ray DuBois. Who knew that Fredericksburg, population 12,000, is the site of the nation’s finest museum of the War in the Pacific? And also Hondo’s, a honkytonk named in honor of the legendary and beloved founder of Luckenbach, TX, where we feasted on BBQ and the lilting melodies of a female country duo.
We next retraced the route of the Friars who created a network of five missions along the San Antonio River, which have come full cycle over 250 years from their sanctuary beginnings. After decades of disrepair, four of the missions were restored by the WPA and now are shared by the National Park Service and the Archdiocese of San Antonio, for which they function as working churches. The fifth of course is the Alamo, which itself has had a physical renaissance, which we toured and appreciated.
We finished our tour with three more San Antonio revelations: 1) the fully realized River Walk, 2) the McNay Art Museum, which features 19th and 20th century paintings in the former Spanish Colonial home of collector Marion Koogler McNay, and 3) the Pearl District, a community built around the revitalized Pearl Brewery, now the amazing Hotel Emma. All capped by the unique opportunity of our farewell dinner at Oakwell, the former home of Robert Tobin, patron of the arts in San Antonio.
A smaller group then traveled to Waco for an extension, courtesy of Bob Wright’s wife Sallie, who arranged events at her family’s ancestral home in town and family farm in the country.
We also enjoyed a behind-the-scenes tour of the Baylor Football Stadium, including a visit to the locker room and field.
Oh, and all along the way, we had great Mexican food, BBQ and maybe too many margaritas.
On to Reunions!