Passionate About San Antonio
and the Moms Who Live Here

New Kids on the Block: Our Move to Boerne

Boerne

I grew up in a small town in Oklahoma, so my move to San Antonio felt very fish-out-of-water. Although I was far from a farm kid, San Antonio felt much like a bustling city to me. It was all very exciting: tons of restaurants, shopping to beat the band, and traffic. Lots and lots of traffic. Okay, so not all of it was glamorous.

All of my time in SA was in the general North Side, and while I loved the convenience of our location, I started to feel like my life was being led in my car – and my kids aren’t even old enough to be heavily involved with activities yet! Call it nostalgia, but a huge part of me wanted a quieter feel to my already harried days.

Off to Boerne we have headed, and let me tell you – it’s great (for us)! I realize it is certainly not everyone’s cup of tea, but we like the feel of a smaller community. The main consideration for anyone looking to move to a smaller town outside San Antonio lies in how committed you are to either dedicating your life to your new town (i.e. giving up/being picky about the activities, restaurants, and even friend-time in SA, and focusing on making all of your extracurricular activities in your new hometown), or how willing you are to spend an eternity a lot of time in your car driving to and fro. Some people don’t mind that; just reminding you to be realistic.

Relocating, even if it’s only 30 minutes away from your previous home, can feel like a pretty exhausting switch. New service providers, new grocery stores (us creatures of habit can be royally thrown by our bread isle being in a different spot), and new places to play with little ones. My kids are 2 and 4, so summer camps aren’t really an option yet, making summers incredibly long full of opportunities to find things to do and places to play. My list is by no means exhaustive, but here are a few staples I’ve discovered in my 2 months here that my Littles have loved here in the heart of Boerne:

duck, duck, goose

Duck, duck… goose!

* River Road Park: You don’t have to live in Boerne to know about this favorite feeding feathered-friends frenzy… Pack a lunch (and a BUNCH of bread) and head to River Road (i.e. Highway 46) for an entertaining romp with various duck and goose species. Beware: the birds can be pretty aggressive. Don’t shy away from “shooing” them away – or send your two-year-old fearless boy “to pet them” – that’s a sure bet to scatter them. Also, I would suggest you eat first, then feed them. They’ll still sit there and stare at you, but they are bolder after you’ve actually given them bread. Another ideas is to grab some Kuhl frozen yogurt or a Sno-Biz Hawaiian Shaved Ice (both are just across the street, off Main), then enjoy your treat while feeding the ducks. If feeding the fowl doesn’t blow your hair back, try using the winding trail to walk or jog, or grab that line and lure and stand on the fishing dock to catch a bid ol’ catfish!

Off towards the trailheads in Cibilo Nature Center

Off towards the trailhead in Cibilo Nature Center

* Getting Outdoors at the Cibolo Nature Center: This spot instantly became a favorite because it provides the best of all worlds for Littles… Outdoors, creatures, water, a fort (or pirate ship, according to my kids), a sandbox (the kids’ favorite, not mom’s favorite), and it’s FREE! This area of Boerne is absolutely gorgeous – it felt very transporting and majestic to me during my first visit. The trees along the river are enormous and provide much-needed shade when the heat is anguishing. We bring “beach toys” like shovels and trowels to play in the dirt/mud, and nets to catch fish and tadpoles in the river. Make sure your packing list includes lots of water (I couldn’t find any water fountains), bug spray, a chair for mama, water shoes, bathing suits, and an old blanket or towels to sit on. There are plenty of spots for a picnic at CNC as well, but bring a plastic bag for your trash because the trash cans are few and far between. Lastly, remember that this is a very outdoor adventure – be prepared for messy (stinky) kids! It’s well worth the laundry and before-bed baths, though, I promise!

The first time we went to the river I didn't know to have the kids wear swim suits... Live and learn!

The first time we went to the river I didn’t know to have the kids wear swim suits… Live and learn!

* Playing at City Park: These are the things I love about a small town: There is a park; it’s called The Boerne City Park. That’s all. No bells and whistles. Love it. The great things about this said park is that there is a giant shade over the bulk of the play structure, which we all know is both wise and necessary, saving overly sweaty (and therefore cranky) mammas from dealing with scalded bottoms from a frying pan of a slide. The only part of the play area that is not shaded is the swings, which happen to be my son’s favorite part. Poor me. Next to the park are the soccer fields, tennis courts, and a pool. I have not personally experienced any of these, but look forward to doing so in the future.

look at all that beautiful shade!

Look at all that beautiful shade!

Cupcakes? Yes, please! Loving watching the cars pass by on Main while we grab a treat at Bear Moon Bakery & Cafe

Cupcakes? Yes, please! Loving watching the cars pass by on Main while we grab a treat at Bear Moon Bakery & Cafe

* Dining Out: The only downside to Boerne is that there aren’t tons of kid-friendly restaurants (as in, has a huge play-place or yard), except for the lauded The Dog & Pony Grill. We love Soda Pops on Main (outdoor seating) and the accompanying Sugar Shack for special occasions. Soda Pops also has a Saturday Hot Rod night – the kids adored seeing all of these vintage cars and trucks almost as much as my husband and I did. And there’s always the beloved Bear Moon for a yummy sweet treat!

My kids, CG and Bear, loving Saturday nights at Soda Pops

My kids, CG and Bear, love Saturday nights at Soda Pops

Currey Trail

Happy mama, happy kids, happy dogs… lovin’ Currey Trail!

* Walk (/Jog/Bike) on a Trail: We are located near Currey Trail, which is a 2 mile paved trail very near downtown Boerne. It’s a great way to unwind in the evenings or to walk some of the energy out of your dogs in the morning. My kids love their bikes, so I usually walk with them as they speed along. The area is quiet but not secluded and it feels safe to traverse alone with kids. I have heard that there are trails at Herff Ranch neighborhood, though I have not experienced them myself. Cibilo Nature Center is filled with trails, as well, should you not be in the mood to romp in the river; these trails are not paved, so appropriate footwear is a must. Hurry up, cooler weather, so I can utilize these great trails mid-day!

 

I am so looking forward to discovering what else Boerne has to offer… I have heard great things about the beach on Boerne Lake, but haven’t made it out there yet. My kids have played in the fountains near the gazebos (is that even allowed?) with my mother-in-law, and we hope to enjoy the movie in the park next summer, since it starts so late. I’d love to hear from “more experienced” Boerne parents!!!

Fellow Boerne mammas, what am I missing? If you live here, comment below and let us know where else parent’s can take kids of all ages around the great town!!

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12 Responses to New Kids on the Block: Our Move to Boerne

  1. Jenna September 4, 2013 at 8:02 am #

    I enjoyed reading your post Maggie! And the comments are great too! We also just moved to Boerne (in June). I am a stay at home mom of 6! (9y, 7y, 3.5y twins & 13m twins) I will second the library spot! They have a wonderful kid area and a fun spot to play. And through the summer the had preschool story time. We never made it, but hope to this fall.
    Maybe we will run in to you some time! Take care!

  2. Stephanie Colvard September 3, 2013 at 3:30 pm #

    Ms. Maggie,

    Hi! I work out at Cibolo Nature Center and I really enjoyed your piece about it’s beauty and all the fun things you can wander into! I also wanted to let you know about some upcoming family activities that we are offering the Boerne community! Here’s what is going on at the Cibolo Nature Center in September!

    Science in Nature
    Families
    Saturday, Sept. 14th, 2013 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. FREE
    Join us for a free day of fun and learning through hands-on activities, crafts, and science presentations.

    Mother Nature Story Time: Butterflies
    Families
    Tuesday, Sept. 17th, 2013 10:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m. $5 (per family)
    Every year the monarch butterfly spreads her wings and rides the wind, traveling thousands of miles in search of a special plant called Milkweed. When she finds it, she lays her eggs on the plant, so when each egg hatches, the baby caterpillar can feed on the leaves. Monarch butterflies have lots of energy to travel such a long way. We will hear a special story about monarch butterflies and make a butterfly or two to take home.

    Farmer’s Market (on Herff Road)
    Families
    Every Saturday 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. FREE
    Come check out the live music, fresh produce, handmade crafts and goodies, and children’s activities!

    We would love to have you out here again! For more information on these or other activities please go to our website calendar at http://www.cibolo.org or call us at 830-249-4616.

  3. Doris Schwarz August 28, 2013 at 10:57 pm #

    You might tell from my e-mail that I have been in Boerne a long time (graduated in 1959). My grand children enjoy going to Cheezy Janes when they come to town. Kid friendly. Welcome to Boerne.

    • Maggie August 29, 2013 at 12:52 pm #

      Great suggestion, Doris! I always love to hear from long-time Boerne residents. My kids love a good burger so we will definitely head to Cheezy Janes soon 🙂 Thanks!

  4. Tami August 28, 2013 at 8:29 pm #

    Hi Maggie!
    I loved reading your thoughts on Boerne. We have lived here for 5 years and are still loving it! We also love the small town feel with the convenience of being close to a big city. I thought I’d tell you about our MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group that meets at 1st Baptist Church here in Boerne. We meet once a month and cover all kinds of topics related to being a mom. It’s a wonderful way to meet other moms who are in the same stage as you. If you’re interested, shoot me an email at [email protected] and I can get you more info on getting registered.

    • Maggie August 29, 2013 at 12:51 pm #

      It’s always nice to know about Mommy options! Thanks so much for the information – I’ll definitely look into it as I know MOPS is a fabulous resource and community for moms. I appreciate your suggestion!!

  5. Allison Jensen August 28, 2013 at 5:29 pm #

    We like boop dawgs and the library is awesome! Also leon springs has the point food and eats and mi casa tamales is not far either. We live in Boerne schools but are off ralph fair so some leon springs restaurants are close too. We moved here in November and love it!

    • Maggie August 29, 2013 at 12:50 pm #

      Allison – I agree, it is nice to have all those great Leon Springs restaurants close by… We love Willie’s and Longhorn Cafe for being so kid-friendly, and Fralos has great outdoor seating. Thanks for your input and suggestions 🙂

  6. Cathy Cisneros August 28, 2013 at 3:54 pm #

    Hi Maggie, welcome to Boerne. My husband and I moved here 13 years ago from San Antonio with our 2 little ones, then 3 and 4 years old, for the same reason. Boerne is a great place for families. Our kids have enjoyed growing up with the same friends and the smaller schools. I also recommend the River trail behind Main Street when it opens back up, as well as the Old #9 trail for walking. The trailhead and parking lot are at the corner of River Road and Esser/Herff Road.

    For kid friendly eating you could also try the Pavilion Food Park on Johns Road. They have a very nice playground behind their buildings. On Fridays and Saturdays, there are several food trucks to choose from, including a baked goods shop. When our kids were small we would also get to-go food and take it to either Optimist park or Northrup park.

    One of my favorite events is Abendkonzerte. The Boerne Village Band holds a series of 4 concerts on Tuesday evenings at the gazebo from 7:30 to 9pm in June and July. The kids enjoy dancing around, and the high school bands sell burgers and ice cream. Even if you are not a German music fan, it’s neat to attend the concert and get to know people. The kids usually enjoy dancing (when they are little).

    If you haven’t taken advantage of our library, I highly recommend that as well. They have a lot of programs/special events for the whole family.

    Well, that’s my little version of Boerne. Take care.

    • Maggie August 28, 2013 at 4:55 pm #

      Cathy – Wow! What great suggestions… I can’t thank you enough for your thorough response and suggestions! We will try ALL of those things 🙂

  7. Tori Bellos August 28, 2013 at 3:04 pm #

    Hi Maggie,
    It was so sweet to have read all of your nice thoughts about Boerne. It really is a joy to work here (and have grown up here also) and know that people do appreciate all the hard work that we do!!
    If you have any questions about Boerne (that you haven’t discovered yet) please let me know! I’ve been around a while and have a 3 year old as well. 🙂
    I’m not sure if you’re on our e-mail list yet for the parks department, but if you’re not and would like to be please let me know. I shoot out a monthly newsletter as well as little reminders of events and programs as they come up. We are also on Facebook, twitter, pinterest (not my best social media effort i will admit), flicker and Youtube (also not my finest, there is only so much time in the day).
    I’ll be sharing your blog on our FB. I hope you don’t mind.
    Have a great day!!
    Tori Bellos
    Special Events & Marketing Supervisor
    Boerne Parks & Recreation

    • Maggie August 28, 2013 at 4:57 pm #

      The Parks department is doing a great job, Tori. Thanks for making a fun and safe place to explore! I look forward to seeing all the events that you conduct and hope to continue to share about the fabulous life of Boerne.