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ienvenido! Howdy! Welcome!

There are many ways to offer greetings here in

the Rio Grande Valley, so please allowme to offer

a most heartfelt ‘welcome back’ to you, our Win-

ter Texas friends, in every way possible!

We’re glad you’re here and we’re glad to once

again call you our friends and neighbors. For many of you, this

is not your first trip to what we locals call the ¶0aJic 9alley ·

but for some of you, it is. No matter how many times you’ve

been down here, though, I can guarantee there’s always some-

thing new to see or learn about this little corner of the world.

The Valley is like nowhere else on Earth. We’re part OldWest,

part 2ld 0e[ico all parts 7e[an and

percent uniTue 7his

region is made up of the four southernmost counties of Texas —

Hidalgo, Cameron, Starr and Willacy. We’re separated from the

larger metropolises of San Antonio, Houston and Austin to the

north by hundreds of miles of sparsely populated ranchlands,

bordered to the southeast by the turTuoise waters oI the *ulI oI

0e[ico and diYided Irom our southern neiJhbors in 0e[ico by

the Valley’s namesake, the life-giving Rio Grande.

Spaniards, Texians and native peoples all roamed this land

when it was still wild centuries ago. That intermingling of

cultures continues today. We proudly embrace our Latino and

cowboy history, with its chapters written in inks made of blood,

sweat, perseverance, tears and triumph.

Battles have been fought here, from the Republic of Texas’

War of Independence to the Civil War. Industries have begun

here Irom the aJricultural industry which produces oYer diI

-

ferent consumables — including cotton, citrus, sugarcane and

more — to futuristic industries such space travel via SpaceX,

which is constructing a launch facility here.

2n these paJes you·ll find descriptions oI some oI the briJht

-

est gems the Rio Grande Valley has to offer — stories about

our history, our culture, our arts and the precious spaces that

still remain wild and green. Take a look, turn the pages, and be

inspired — as we are — with this place we call home.

Welcome!

Dina Arévalo

Editor

Winter Tourist Guide

4

Howdy!

B

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