Oh, Christmas in Texas. Where do I even begin? The weather has been warm and muggy, making it nearly impossible to find anyone in the Christmas spirit. Christmas, it seemed, was going to come and go without anyone batting an eye!
That was until I got a wonderful email from my friends at the Galveston Visitors Bureau. Over the summer they invited me to spend a day at some of their best summer attractions. Galveston is a city I know very well but I was still surprised at all the things I hadn't seen! So for this holiday season I was eager to learn all about the Christmas happenings on the island.
I started my day off with a trip to Moody Mansion. Located just a few blocks down from another impressive mansion, Bishop's Palace, Moody Mansion has an entirely different story.
The Moody name is a familiar one in Galveston. When William Lewis Moody moved his family to Galveston in 1866 he had no idea he would be starting a dynasty. The Moody's quickly became a prominent family in Galveston society, business, and trade. Today you can see remittences of the Moody name plastered across the city. Their family home is just a small reminder of how well off the family had become. One of the most beautiful homes on the island, Moody Mansion was bought by the Moody family in 1900, just months after the deadliest hurricane in United States history. From there, the Moody family help rebuild Galveston through many business endeavors. William Lewis Moody even bought the Hilton hotel chain at one point, helping Conrad Hilton get out of his finical troubles as a result of the Great Depression.
That evening when the sun went down we headed across the island to Moody Gardens. Moody Gardens, named for the same family who made Galveston their home in the late 1800s, is an education center and tourist attraction. Seen on the Galveston skyline for miles, Moody Gardens is famous for it's 3 tall pyramids. Inside each pyramid you can find an aquarium, a rainforest, and a science exhibition. For Christmas however, Moody Gardens puts on a Festival of Lights that stretches all across the vast grounds. Similar to the Houston Zoo Lights, the Moody Gardens Festival of Lights is a self guided walking tour of lights and Christmas festivities.
The idea of Christmas usually involves snow or any form of 'winter'. Here in Texas, we have to make do with what we have. Christmas on Galveston Island may not be the traditional sense of Christmas, but it's the perfect place to get into the holiday spirit when that cold weather is seriously lacking.