Family Travel…Georgetown, Texas

A few weeks ago, before the flood, before schools went back to class, before we saw Seven return to Virginia, Rusty and I took our little man for a quick weekend trip to Georgetown, Texas.  Being a still new Texan, I am always excited to get out and see new-to-me Lone Star towns, and after reading a little PR spiel about Georgetown, I have to admit, I was really excited.  Caves, boating, markets, great dining?  The #1 fastest growing city in America in its population range?  And the Most Beautiful Town Square in the state?

This I had to see.

We arrived in Georgetown late on a Friday afternoon, and swung by the Visitor’s Center.  Talk about a welcome. This little town has a stunning historical façade, and they weren’t kidding about that town square. It REALLY is beautiful.  It’s a reminder of all things that used to be easy, and good.  Where soda shops were a real thing, and not just in the movies.  Where neighbors were actually neighborly.

It oozes nostalgia.

With pamphlets and brochures in hand thanks to the Visitor’s Center, we headed to our first destination…Inner Space Cavern.  Discovered in only 1963, this cave system is open to the public and full of fascinating stalactites and stalagmites.  Having been a cave girl back in the day, I’ve seen my share of water pots and muddy crawl spaces, but Inner Space makes the underground world accessible to the masses.  A fun tour guide leads every visitor through the roughly mile long maze of formations, with historical tidbits thrown in for a nice lesson.  We also discovered some amazing light tricks that I had no idea existed…you’ll just have to visit for yourself to see! If you visit Georgetown, this is a great attraction – especially in the summer.  Why?  It’s cool underground!  Kids and adults will all find something to love here, so don’t miss it.

After our spelunking, we ventured over to our home for the weekend, the new Sheraton Georgetown.  Easily reached off the interstate, and not far from downtown, the 222 room Sheraton was a stunning hotel with more amenities than we imagined.  A refreshing (heated!) pool, a workout center, a restaurant and bar…it had more than we needed!  Our room was incredible as well  (and…free wifi, yes!)!  Our suite consisted of a large living room, complete with wet bar, 1 1/2 baths, and a master bedroom and bathroom to rival any of the finest luxury hotels I’ve had the pleasure of staying in.  The staff was first rate, and surprised Seven with a custom birthday cake in our room, as well as a bottle of wine for Rusty and I.  So thoughtful!

The layout for the weekend was ideal for us: the living room closed off from the bedroom, and had a very comfortable pull out sofa for Sev.  He loved having his own space, so that he could sneak and watch TV all night.  Hey! You’re only a kid once, and it was vacation after all!

On Saturday, we headed back to the Town Square for a quick tour of the Williamson Museum.  Full of Georgetown and its interesting history, even Seven had a good time there.  Interactive stations as well as artwork, amazing architectural details, and other information made it a fun visit before heading back out into the summer heat to see the market!

Loads of vendors were set up all around the square selling handmade items, foods, and so much more.  We wandered the stalls, checking everything out, but lunch was calling, so we HAD to head to the local’s favorite – 600 Degree Pizza.

Now, I have had plenty of pizza in my life.  What was going to be so special about THIS pizza place that EVERYONE we encountered advised our visit?

HUGE pizza.  Seriously huge.  One piece is more than enough for anyone, and the choices of toppings are pretty darned great.  The place was packed right at opening, if that tells you anything, and by the time we were waited on, there was a line out the door.  PRIOR to noon you guys.  Seven loved the giant slice, and managed to eat every bite.  I’m not sure how, but pretty sure it was based on the fact that we promised him homemade ice cream from just down the street if he ate well!

Speaking of that ice cream…it’s an ice cream parlor called Scoopz in a toy store, All Things Kids.  A TOY STORE where all of the toys are actual toys. No batteries, just imagination.  Sev fell in love with a chef puppet.  No joke. I had to let him have it…it’s rare he wants a toy that doesn’t go with his PS4!  Between the three of us, we played for nearly an hour there, plus had 6 types of that homemade ice cream.  I have to say mine was the best – a caramel crunch salty goodness.  But all of it was amazing!

Next up was one of the highlights of the weekend, for all of us.  Kayaking!  We rented a couple of kayaks from Georgetown Paddle Company, who met us at the boatramp at Lake Georgetown.  It was a gorgeous day, so LOTS of folks were out there fishing and playing…we paddled along the shoreline to a nice quiet cove, parked the kayaks and jumped in!  The water was cool and refreshing…exactly what we wanted on a hot day!  It took us a little persuading to get Sev (he’s a timid sort) to join us in the water, but once he was in, he didn’t want to get out!  Georgetown Paddle Company was great to work with, meeting us there both coming and going.  If you go, give them a call!

After that already FULL day, we all needed a break.  So back to the Sheraton we went, pulled our blackout curtains (thank goodness for those!) and all proceeded to nap!  Comfy beds and soft sheets made it easy to snooze, and snooze we did!  However, bellies started grumbling, and we had reservations at another well-loved restaurant in town – Wildfire.

I was kind of nervous about the menu, and what am almost 10 year old may find to eat.  Me? I had duck breast that was delicious.  Rusty was brave and ordered OSTRICH.  Sev?  He ate his kids meal, then part of my duck and at least HALF of Rusty’s ostrich!  I guess I needn’t have worried!  The menu was whimsical and very well done, the service was excellent, and the décor was just right.  We were comfortable in casual clothes, despite the upscale flavors, and everyone else dining there seemed to feel the same way.  What a treasure to have such a restaurant in such a quaint town!

I know there is so much more to do in Georgetown, so we will have to return, and you should make the trip yourself!  This month is ideal, as they have a lot of fun goings-on for Halloween!  Here’s a blurb of what you can expect and when – so check it out!

WHAT:

Throughout October, Georgetown will host a variety of Halloween events for all ages. Join one of the Ghostly Adventure Tours around the “Most Beautiful Town Square in Texas,” to hear tales of Williamson County’s haunted past; two versions are available for both younger children and older thrill-seekers. Thrill-seekers may also enjoy  the 8th Annual Nightmare on Jail Hill Haunted House, with an evening exploring the haunted Williamson County Jail. The haunted house is sponsored by the Williamson County Brown Santa and the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office with all proceeds benefiting the Brown Santa program.

 

WHEN & WHERE:

Oct. 13 & 14, 20 & 21:

Nightmare on Jail Hill Haunted House takes place at the Old Williamson County Jail at 312 Main Street, Georgetown. This rumored haunted jailhouse, which held prisoners from 1889 through 1990, has been featured on the show, “Ghost Hunters.” The event runs from 7:00 to 11:00 p.m. each night. Fast Pass tickets are $25, adult tickets are $15 and child tickets are $5 (ages 8-12).  *The historic jail is NOT handicap accessible.

 

Oct. 13 & 14, 27 & 28:

Ghosts on the Square Tours are hosted by the Williamson Museum. Tour times: 7:30, 8:00, 8:30 and 9:00 p.m. for both weekends. Some tours are scarier than others, so please ask when purchasing tickets. Tours at 9 p.m. will be scarier than the earlier tours tours. Purchase tickets at the Williamson Museum at 716 S. Austin Ave. Georgetown 78626, or by phone at 512- 943-1670. Tickets are $15 for non-museum members and $12 for members and students.

 

I’d like to give a huge thanks to all of the fine folks we worked with to make tis trip to Georgetown so incredible, especially Visit Georgetown, who hosted our visit.  They were fantastic to work with, and we truly enjoyed it.  While our trip was hosted, of course, all thoughts and opinions are my own.