Horses and riders both find tranquility on Blackrose Stables’ 100-acre grounds, where professional instructors host riding lessons and guided trail hikes. The caring staff tends to boarded horses’ every desire with daily attention, fresh hay, and movie screens playing Seabiscuit on a constant loop. With assistance from the nonprofit Blackrose Equine Rehabilitation and Riding Facility, the staff also nurses injured horses back to health through equine massage, chiropractic care, and other services.
The horses at Hollow Tree Ranch trot around more than 20 grassy acres laced with streams, dotted with leafy trees, and imbued with wild country atmosphere. Here, skilled instructors guide beginner students during horseback-riding lessons. They place their pupils on the horse right at the beginning for hands-on instruction in saddling up and controlling a steed through trotting, weaving between obstacles, and riding over a log trail. They also combine equestrian training with group roping lessons, where they demonstrate how to coil, aim, and throw a lasso at targets such as an orange cone, a ground dummy, and a high-school bully. They run a one-week intensive day camp in horseback riding, tacking, and care, and regularly use equine therapy to instill communication skills, core muscle strength, and confidence in young people with disabilities.
At Paradise Fun Center, the gurgling waterfalls in two 18-hole mini-golf courses and the rustling of trees in the breeze provide the soundtrack for pleasant, family-friendly outings. Each course is riddled with zigzags, sharp turns, and challenges that don't rely on advanced levitation abilities. Batting cages accommodate fast- and slow-pitch practice, and go-kart racing quenches needs for speed, and a variety of arcade games are available. In between the fun and games, the center keeps energy levels elevated with candy, pizza, nachos, and ice cream at its snack bar, and a picnic area and party room are available for group outings.
Set just north of Texas Ski Ranch, Roll Rage’s fleet of four-wheeled all-terrain vehicles kicks up dust along the hilly twists and turns of a trailhead flanked by wild grasses, trees, and cacti. The company's throttle-twisting tour guides train and acquaint each patron with the general controls of the four-wheeler, before groups set off into the sunshine. Though riders of all experience levels are welcome to traverse the bumpy thoroughfares sprawling out from Roll Rage, the bushwhacking trail is designed to be adrenaline packed with fast twists and turns that get the heart pounding and upper body working. The four-wheeling staff can also accommodate groups of up to 20 or more on 30-minute journeys that supply entertainment at corporate outings and manual dexterity tests at clone military school.
For three days in November, the Weihnachtsmarkt Christmas Market brings Olde World Christmas spirit to New Braunfels. Vendors set up cheery red and green booths in the German-style holiday market, where they sell homemade wares such as aromatic roasted nuts, unique toys, vintage cameos, and homemade toffee. Nearby, authors sit ready to discuss their novels or sing their favorite Christmas carols at the on-site book fair and a jolly Santa eats breakfast with kids of all ages. To keep guests warm during the event, Sophie's Cafe serves up warm mugs of soup paired with sandwiches or tempting desserts.
Proceeds from the event benefit The Sophienburg Museum and Archives, which serves as the hub for immigration ship logs, photos, and documents of the first German Americans who found their way to Texas.