Road Scholar : Home
Great American Get-Together in San Antonio

Program Number: 21173RJ
Start and End Dates:
11/11/2014 - 11/18/2014; 11/2/2016 - 11/9/2016;
Duration: 7 nights
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Price starting at: $1,695.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: History & Culture
Meals: 17; 7 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 5 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian; Low Salt; Gluten Free    

Celebrate the spirit of San Antonio — and Road Scholar — as you join us for a week of fellowship, learning and fun in the heart of Texas! We’ve planned an amazing array of in-depth lectures, field trips and activities — plus a final night gala with music and cultural dancers. There is something for everyone, as you experience the best of Road Scholar in San Antonio.


• Join experts for explorations of San Antonio’s greatest landmarks, including the Alamo, King William Historic District, the missions and historic La Villita.
• Delight in the masterpieces of the McNay Museum of Art, explore San Antonio’s beautiful River Walk, and learn about the German heritage of Fredericksburg.
• Visit the earliest Spanish settlements in the area, choose a field trip that interests you, and enjoy a Mexican feast with a mariachi performance.

Activity Particulars

Must be able to climb up and down stairs every day to access river walk area of city and restaurants. Must be able to board public bus, trolley and charter bus with minimal assistance. Walking up to two miles and standing in museum for 1-2 hours a day.

Program limited to 170 participants, but the group will be divided into smaller groups for most activities.

Coordinated by University of Texas at Austin.

San Antonio

Explored in 1691 and 1709 by Spanish expeditions that named the San Antonio River and San Pedro Creek, the city of San Antonio today incorporates its colorful past into its present, offering the bustling River Walk, botanical gardens of native Texas flora, and the Missions National Historic Park, which includes the famous Alamo.

Historic downtown hotel with rooftop pool located on San Antonio’s River Walk.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Diana Barrios

Diana Barrios’ cooking-class techniques, spiced with warmth and wit, were honed during her years of weekly cooking segments on San Antonio morning television. Her local celebrity status resulted in guest cooking appearances on National TV shows as "Good Morning, America" and the Food Network. Encouraged by her new friend, Emeril Lagasse, Diana collected family recipes for the "Los Barrios Family Cookbook" that is sold nationally and for which Emeril wrote the forward.
Bill Perryman

A fifth generation Texan and an award-winning teacher, Bill Perryman is known throughout Texas for his historical portrayals of heroic figures in Texas and American history and for his teacher trainings, seminars and educational explorations of historic San Antonio. He is the founder of History In Person Theater which is an official arts program for the Texas Commission on the Arts. Bill’s passion for history captivates audiences!
Bruce Martin

Bruce Martin is a native Texan who has lived in San Antonio for more than 30 years. A Texas Master Naturalist, he leads informative and entertaining explorations throughout San Antonio’s downtown, historic districts, cemeteries, missions, and natural areas, as well as the nearby Texas Hill Country. A keen observer of the built environment, Bruce shares his appreciation for San Antonio’s architectural details and public artwork, as well as some scandalous stories that are very much a part of local history. Bruce drives a white pickup and tries not to take himself too seriously — he and his wife Barbara live in a 1937 white stucco house near the San Antonio River.
Chita Harris

If walking is your passion, Chita Harris is your go-to expert. From the Alamo to the River Walk, from the Hill Country to San Antonio’s fascinating array of missions, Chita has the energy and the expertise to lead you on illuminating hikes to the region’s many iconic sites. When she’s not putting one foot in front of the other, Chita can be found volunteering with a variety of local charities. Remind her to tell you about her time living on a Hereford cattle ranch.
Tim Draves

Tim Draves teaches Texas History at the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio. He has been the editor of The Journal of the Life and Culture of San Antonio since 2005, where he promotes research and understanding of over 300 years of the town’s settlement. Tim serves on the Bexar County Historical Commission, and has won several Texas research and teaching awards.
Allen Hamilton

Allen Lee Hamilton is a professor of Texas and American history at St. Philip's College in San Antonio who has taught more than 400 college classes during his 35 year career. The author of four books and over 30 articles in historical and popular journals, Allen has won three NISOD Awards from the University of Texas for Teaching Excellence, was named Professor of the Year twice, and is a Minnie Stevens Piper nominee for the Outstanding College Professor in Texas. He completed his undergraduate and graduate work at the University of Texas at Arlington, and his doctoral work at the University of Oklahoma. Perhaps most importantly, Allen is a fourth generation Texan whose family has been in this great state since 1866.
Ginger Burkholder

Ginger Burkholder is a proud 7th generation Texan. She’s a certified elementary and secondary school teacher and a retired financial services professional. As a Certified Professional Guide, Ginger loves sharing the rich culture and history of San Antonio and South Texas.
Lynne Christopher

Lynne Christopher coordinates education programs for the San Antonio Water System (SAWS). Educated in Alabama and Georgia, she taught school for 12 years and has worked in informal education for 15 years. Previously employed by the Witte Museum in San Antonio, Lynne loves reading and singing in her church choir, and she admits to being a huge “Star Trek” fan.
Jim Kersey

A native of Texas, Jim Kersey has been interested in the history of the Lone Star state from an early age. Following a career in criminal justice for both state and federal agencies, Jim has been a private investigator, a contract investigator for the FBI, and has led educational excursions throughout San Antonio. He volunteers for the San Antonio Missions Historical National Park, as well as for Haven of Hope, a comprehensive program for persons experiencing homelessness.
Andres Tijerina

Dr. Andrés Tijerina, a native of Ozona, Texas, is an expert on the history of The Lone Star State. He earned his bachelor's degree from Texas A&M University, followed by a master's from Texas Tech, and doctorate from the University of Texas at Austin. He has taught at colleges throughout the state, but is currently a faculty member of Austin Community College and serves with distinction as professor of history at the Pinnacle Campus. Andrés is the author of “Tejanos and Texas Under the Mexican Flag and Tejano Empire: Life on the South Texas Ranchos,” and has edited several other books. His writing and editing work has received the Presidio La Bahía Award, the Kate Broocks Bates Award, and the T. R. Fehrenbach Award.
Meals and Lodgings
   Drury Plaza Hotel
  San Antonio, Texas 7 nights
 Drury Plaza Hotel
Type: Hotel
  Description: Enjoy historical elegance and spectacular views along the famous River Walk. The Drury Plaza Hotel is the restored 1929 Alamo National Bank Building, located on the River Walk, and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Using Art Deco ornamentation and the principles of the Beaux-Arts, the architects designed the twenty-four story skyscraper and incorporated the Texas Stars and southwest patterns. This architectural masterpiece has been a landmark in the San Antonio skyline since its construction. The basement still contains three of the original bank vaults. The outdoor swimming pool and Jacuzzi, on the hotel's 24th floor, features city-wide views.
  Contact info: 105 South St. Mary's Street
San Antonio, TX 78205 USA
phone: 210-270-7799
  Room amenities: All rooms are standard rooms featuring a microwave and refrigerator, iron and ironing board, hair dryer, coffee maker, Internet access and cable TV.
  Facility amenities: Amenities at the Drury Plaza include a full hot breakfast buffet with scrambled eggs, sausage, pancakes, biscuits and gravy, juice, fruit, yogurt, cereals, coffee, and tea, complimentary Happy Hour daily, free long distance – one hour every night in every room, complimentary 24-hour business center, fitness room and Guest Pantry, on-site covered parking is available for an additional charge, free fountain soda and fresh popcorn each afternoon in the lobby, beautiful rooftop pool and Jacuzzi with citywide views, and guest laundry.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: Best seasonal price available. For pre and post reservations, please email Sandra Palomino at or call her at 210-220-2990.
  Check in time: 4:00 PM
  Additional nights after: Best seasonal price available. For pre and post reservations, please email Sandra Palomino at or call her at 210-220-2990.
  Check out time: 12:00 PM

Travel Details
  Start of Program:
4:30 p.m. at the hotel. You will be staying at Drury Plaza Hotel that night.
  End of Program:
8:00 a.m. at the hotel. You will be staying at Drury Plaza Hotel the night before.
  Required documents:
The Participant Information Form is required. The University of Texas Release and Indemnification Agreement & Field Trip Choice Sheet. All 3 forms (Road Scholar Participant Information Form, Release and Indemnification Agreement, and Field Trip Choice Sheet) must be completed and returned to the University of Texas at Austin at least four weeks prior to the program. Please mail all forms to: The University of Texas at Austin Road Scholar Program 2405 Robert Dedman Drive, Room 1.106 Austin, TX 78712
  Parking availability:
Additional charge for parking at the hotel.
To Start of Program
  Location:  San Antonio, Texas
  Nearest city or town:  San Antonio
  Nearest highway: I-35, I-37 & I-10
  Nearest airport:  San Antonio International
  From End of Program
  Location: San Antonio, Texas
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details

San Antonio International


To Airport




Commercial Van/Shuttle
Go Shuttle
phone: 210-281-9900


Per Person/One Way:


Your program cost includes transportation to and from the airport.
Prices are subject to change.


Travel Time:


up to 30 minutes depending on traffic 


Your package includes transportation to the airport, which will be provided by either shuttle van or motor coach. When you arrive, look for the Road Scholar greeters in your terminal, who will direct you to the shuttle. If you arrive before the program start date, please find the Go Shuttle desk at the airport and ask for your ticket.



To Airport




Commercial Van/Shuttle
Go Shuttle
phone: 210-281-9900


Per Person/One Way:


Your program cost includes transportation to and from the airport.
Prices are subject to change.


Travel Time:


up to 30 minutes depending on traffic 


Most participants will return to the airport on the last day of the program by motorcoach from the hotel. Buses will run from the hotel to the airport several times on the final day. Those who stay in San Antonio beyond the final date of the program will be given a shuttle pass and may book their return trip to the airport on their own.

Driving Directions
  From Austin/Dallas From the North (I-35 South Bound from Austin): Take I-37 South, exit Commerce Street, turn right onto Commerce Street. Hotel garage is on the left just past the St. Mary’s Street - Commerce Street intersection.
  From Houston From the East (I-10 West Bound from Houston): Take I-37 North, exit Commerce Street. Turn left onto Commerce Street. Hotel garage entrance is on the left just past the intersection of St. Mary’s Street – Commerce Street. is on the right.
  From IH-10-El Paso From the West (I-10 East Bound from El Paso): Take I-35 South, exit Frio Street. Turn left onto Martin Street. Turn right onto St. Mary’s Street. Turn right onto Commerce Street. Hotel garage is on the left on Commerce Street.
  From the south on I-35 From the South (I-35 North Bound from Laredo): Exit Durango Blvd., turn left onto St. Mary’s Street. This street splits and will become a one-way street, Navarro. Turn left onto Commerce Street. Hotel garage entrance in on the left just past the St. Mary’s – Commerce Street intersection.
Elevation Note: Elevation is 600 feet above sea level.

Equipment Requirements: Equipment is not required.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival in San Antonio, registration with program’s group leaders, orientation meeting and dinner
(Tuesday, November 11)
 Afternoon: Arrive at the Drury Plaza Hotel after 3:00 p.m. for check-in. Upon arrival, please pick up your program folder (this will give you your group assignment number) in the hotel lobby. At 4:30 p.m., attend an orientation meeting with your group leader on the 4th floor of the hotel. You will review the week’s itinerary, get to know other participants in your group, receive your listening devices and get other information needed during your stay.
 Afternoon: 5:30 p.m. Enjoy the kickback reception on the 2nd floor of the hotel, featuring free hot food and cold drinks, during each day of your stay.
 Dinner: A catered dinner will be served in the hotel ballroom on the fourth floor.
 Evening: During dinner, enjoy a short presentation on conjunto music, followed by music by a local trio. Conjunto music blends the traditions of the Tejanos of South Texas with the Norteños of Northern Mexico with influences from German and other European immigrants. Welcoming remarks, special introductions and general program information follow dinner.
Accommodations: Drury Plaza Hotel
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Texas History Presentation, Alamo, La Villita and the River Walk
(Wednesday, November 12)

Note: Must be able to climb up and down stairs to access river walk area of city and restaurants. Must be able to board trolley to reach start of walking tour. Walking up to two miles.

 Breakfast: Full buffet breakfast in the hotel from 6:00 – 9:30 a.m. on the 2nd floor of the hotel.
 Morning: Pick any kid off the street in Japan, show him an outline of the state of Texas, and most likely he will instantly know what it is. Professor Allen Lee Hamilton of St. Philip's College will explain why Texas is the most universally famous place in America in a two-hour lecture and PowerPoint tour of Texas History, focusing on the sweeping events and fascinating characters that make Texas the amazing place it is; what John Steinbeck described as "a state of mind . . . a mystique closely approximating a religion . . . the obsession, the proper study, and the passionate possession of all Texans.”
 Lunch: Enjoy a delightful buffet lunch at a historic hotel, located near Alamo Plaza.
 Afternoon: Go on expert-led walking explorations that visit the Alamo, the elegant Menger Hotel—built in 1859 on the site of Texas’ first brewery—and La Villita, at the heart of old San Antonio which is now home to the shops and studios of artists and craftsmen. You'll understand more about Texas pride as you visit these historic sites.
 Afternoon: Make your way to the River Walk— the heart of the city —for a narrated barge ride on the San Antonio River, located 20 feet below street level and just steps from the famed Alamo. See how stone pathways connect shops, restaurants, hotels and museums with a blend of historic and modern architecture that resonate the depth of this centuries-old metropolis. The river barge ride ends at your hotel.
 Afternoon: Enjoy the kickback reception on the 2nd floor of the hotel, featuring free hot food and cold drinks, available every day on the second floor of the hotel.
 Dinner: Savor dinner at a river walk restaurant near the hotel. See the beauty of the river at night as you return to the hotel for the evening.
Accommodations: Drury Plaza Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Presentation on LBJ's Legacy and Immigration Laws; visit the McNay Museum, Southwest School of Art, and the San Antonio Library
(Thursday, November 13)

Note: Must be able to climb up and down stairs to access river walk area of city and restaurants. Must be able to board trolley to reach start of walking tour. Walking up to two miles and standing in museum for 1-2 hours.

 Breakfast: Full buffet breakfast on the second floor of the hotel from 6:00 – 9:30 a.m.
 Morning: Art enthusiasts will delight in afternoon field trips to some of San Antonio’s finest art institutions. Enjoy a visit to the McNay Museum of Art, a Spanish Colonial Revival-style home which opened as the first museum of modern art in Texas in 1954. Today, its visitors are captivated by magnificent works of art by modern masters including Paul Gauguin, Vincent Van Gogh, Edward Hopper, Georgia O'Keeffe, Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock and Pierre-Auguste Renoir. You will also make stops at the Southwest School of Art, one of the nation’s largest community-based art schools on the grounds of a former convent, and the San Antonio Public Library, an architecturally striking vibrant red building designed by renowned architect Ricardo Legoretta. Marvel at the building’s crowning artistic jewel, the colorful Fiesta Tower by renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly. The Fiesta Tower, comprised of 900-plus unique hand-blown glass ornaments, rises nearly 27 feet from the library’s atrium.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: PRESENTATION: Consider the broad panorama of legislation passed in the 1960s during the Johnson administration, as described by a faculty member from the LBJ School of Public Affairs. President Johnson's vision for a more just and honorable country contributed to the passage of the most important civil rights legislation in the 20th century. You may be surprised to learn that the immigration act shepherded by President Johnson was the most transformational policy in our nation's history. Find out why Texans recently celebrated LBJ's legacy upon the 50th anniversary of the passage of landmark legislation supported by Johnson that shapes so many aspects of our society today.
 Dinner: Dinner is on your own. Enjoy the kickback reception on the 2nd floor of the hotel starting at 5:30 p.m., featuring free hot food and cold drinks, during each day of your stay. Or venture out and sample from the wide variety of restaurants and cuisines offered within the area surrounding the hotel on the city’s river walk or on the street level.
 Evening: PRESENTATION: What is the Third Coast? Learn from an industry insider about the film industry in Texas. Over 100 local production companies have created an artistic and hard-working community that attract filmmakers from all over the world. You're sure to have seen some of the critically acclaimed films or television shows produced in the Lone Star State.
Accommodations: Drury Plaza Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 4: Field trip to the quaint German town of Fredericksburg, featuring the Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park; barbecue dinner and dancing
(Friday, November 14)

Note: Walk 1-2 miles, standing in museum for 1-2 hours.

 Breakfast: Full buffet breakfast on the second floor of the hotel from 6:00 – 9:30 a.m.
 Morning: Make an early departure for a full day excursion to the Texas hill country. Begin in the scenic Hill Country town of Fredricksburg. Explore the city on your own to visit German historical sites, marketplaces or breweries. You may choose to visit the National Museum of the Pacific War, located in the historic hotel run by the family of Admiral Chester Nimitz. Soak up the early history of the area by visiting the Pioneer Museum Complex or the Vereins-Kirche (Society Church), the oldest public building in town.
 Lunch: On your own at one of the many restaurants along Main Street in Fredericksburg, Texas.
 Afternoon: Spend the afternoon at the LBJ National Historical Park, which contains a visitor center, reconstructed boyhood home, cemetery and the Johnsons’ residence, known as the Texas White House, where the private quarters have been recently opened to the public for the first time.
 Dinner: Enjoy a private party at a dance hall with other Road Scholars as you listen to an award-winning area band. A delicious barbecue dinner tops off a great day.
Accommodations: Drury Plaza Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 5: Special Interest Field Trip Choice Day: Mexican Food Cooking demonstration, Nature walk, Architecture walk, West Side District/Murals, or Transformational Homeless Center
(Saturday, November 15)

Note: Varies depending on field trip choice. Nature and Architectural Guided Walks- up to 3 miles.

 Breakfast: Full buffet breakfast on the second floor of the hotel from 7:00 – 10:00 a.m.- please note later time on weekends.
 Morning: Choose from one of the following field trips: 1) Cooking demonstration/class- Learn how to prepare a delicious Mexican meal with picante style from Diana Barrios Trevino, who shares the story of her mother’s effort to start a restaurant and how the family business has expanded to satisfy the hunger of thousands of happy customers. 2) Nature/Bird Watching walk along river extension trail- Enjoy a three-mile hike alongside the San Antonio River. You will learn about the city's urban renewal efforts. Bring your binoculars to help spot birds and other wildlife as you enjoy an easy walk on paved pathways with a master naturalist as your guide. 3) Explore Downtown Architecture- See and identify a wide variety of architectural styles through a guided walk near the hotel. You'll see how the city has blended in new structures while maintaining the city's historic feel and visit a state historic site, home of an early Tejano settler. 4) Hispanic Culture/West Side Visit- Explore an area rarely seen by tourists with a visit to the city's west side. Learn more about the diversity of the city and view some of its colorful murals. View a Mexican bakery and a Catholic Church, explore herbal remedies in a botanica, and drive by many other historic and important places in the life of West Side residents. 5) Haven for Hope- Visit the largest, most comprehensive center addressing homelessness in the US. The vision of a San Antonio business leader, working with a variety of governmental and faith-based agencies, resulted in the construction of a vibrant transitional campus where homeless residents learn to become self-sufficient members of the community. The innovative partnership of 81 partner agencies provide 150 different services to provide medical, dental, mental health and other forms of treatment and assistance to those making the transition to independence.
 Lunch: Lunch is included on each of the special interest field trips.
 Afternoon: Most of the afternoon is free for you to explore the city on your own.
 Dinner: At 5:30 p.m. enjoy the kickback reception on the 2nd floor of the hotel, featuring free hot food and cold drinks, during each day of your stay. Dinner is on your own to explore some of the city's culinary gems.
 Evening: Free for you to explore the many attractions of the city on your own. Or, you may choose to stay in the hotel and enjoy a Texas-themed movie with other Road Scholars.
Accommodations: Drury Plaza Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 6: Presentation on German Immigrant Mary Menger; Presentation on Cultural Influence of Tejanos; Explore King William Historic District; San Fernando Cathedral; Texas tales/story telling
(Sunday, November 16)

Note: walking up to 1-2 miles; stand in museum for up to one hour

 Breakfast: Full buffet breakfast on the second floor of the hotel from 7:00 – 10:30 a.m.- please note later time on weekends
 Morning: You will hear the intriguing story of German immigrant Mary Menger, who operated two large San Antonio enterprises in the mid-19th century and demonstrated that a woman could thrive during a time when men dominated local commerce. As a widow and single mother, Menger profited from both the Western Brewery and Menger Hotel and became San Antonio’s largest employer. Following a short break, an expert on Tejano history will enlighten you about influences on our culture we see today from the Mexican-American inhabitants of South Texas. Although their contribution to history has been largely overlooked, you'll find out how many things in our culture today arose from the influence of the Tejano community.
 Lunch: Hear a traditional mariachi performance as you enjoy a traditional Tex-Mex meal.
 Afternoon: Led by experts, enjoy a walk to visit the heart and soul of the city, the San Fernando Cathedral. Built in 1738, the Cathedral is still in operation and played an important role in the religious and secular history of the city. Then, you'll take a trip back in time as your experts lead you through an area settled in the mid-19th century by affluent Germans, named after King Wilhelm of Prussia. Stroll through a neighborhood of impressive homes designed in the Greek Revival, Victorian and Italianate styles. Get an inside look at the lifestyle of rich and famous San Antonio personalities from the late 1800s.
 Dinner: Enjoy dinner at a popular restaurant near the hotel.
 Evening: From campfires to cracker barrels to front porches, folks have been gathering around to hear stories for centuries, and tales told well still work their magic. Texas history and folklore come alive through the riveting tales—some true, some tall—told by our award-winning storyteller, so gather round, sit back, and enjoy.
Accommodations: Drury Plaza Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Spanish Missions; Institute of Texan Cultures; farewell dinner
(Monday, November 17)

Note: Walk up to two miles and stand in a museum for up to two hours.

 Breakfast: Full buffet breakfast on the second floor of the hotel from 6:00 – 9:30 a.m.
 Morning: Explore the city’s early Spanish mission complex Travel by private motorcoach to San Antonio Mission National Historic Park for an exploration of the missions that make up the complex. With experts, learn about the early settlement and efforts of the Spanish to convert people to the church and an agricultural form of life. Discover the beauty of Mission San Jose y San Miguel de Aguayo, the Queen of the Missions, restored by the WPA in the 1930s. See how Spaniards used irrigation (acequia) systems to develop self-sustaining agricultural communities along the San Antonio River. See other nearby missions during your visit to the site of the earliest European settlement.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: All groups will go by motorcoach to the Institute of Texas Cultures (ITC) at Hemisfair Park. Operated by the University of Texas at San Antonio, the ITC fulfills its mandate as the state’s center for multicultural education by investigating the ethnic and cultural history of the state. Examine displays about the 26 different ethnic and cultural groups that settled the Texas frontier. Enjoy exclusive, after-hours admission to the museum and learn about the rich diversity of cultures who sent settlers to Texas.
 Dinner: Farewell dinner under the dome theater of the museum, featuring music and cultural dancers.
Accommodations: Drury Plaza Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Breakfast and Departure
(Tuesday, November 18)
 Breakfast: Full buffet breakfast on the second floor of the hotel from 6:00 – 9:30 a.m.
 Morning: Say “adios” to San Antonio as you depart for home. Hotel check-out time is no later than 12:00 p.m. Shuttle buses will be running from the hotel to the airport throughout the day. Those who stay in San Antonio beyond the final day will be provided with shuttle vouchers to return to the airport at their convenience.
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
  San Antonio, Texas Briscoe Western Art Museum
The Briscoe Museum preserves and interprets the art, history, and culture of the American West through engaging exhibitions, educational programs, and public events reflective of the region’s rich traditions and shared heritage. 210 W. Market Street; Telephone 210.299.4499 For additional information, visit
  Botanical Gardens
San Antonio's Botanical Gardens house 33 acres of display gardens, fountains, and natural areas. The Halsell Conservatory, a 90,000-square-foot complex of below-ground houses that use the earth's insulation to limit plant exposure to the elements. Only the pyramidal glass roofs are visible from above ground. Sixteen feet below ground several ecosystems surround a courtyard and pond. Telephone 210-207-3255. For additional information, visit
  Casa Navarro State Historic Site
Former home of eminent statesman, rancher, Jose Antonio Navarro. Site consists of three restored structures: his home, kitchen and office. Navarro was among the signers of the Texas Declaration of Independence. Site contains authentic period furnishings, personal memorabilia.
  Convention and Visitors Bureau
The San Antonio Convention and Visitors Bureau operates a full-service visitor information center that provides an extensive inventory of helpful brochures and other promotional materials concerning events and sites in and around the city. For additional information, visit
  El Mercado-The Market
A two-block long festival market that includes El Mercado, a typical market from the interior of Mexico selling pinatas, jewelry, clothing, leather goods, cascarones and pottery.
  Guenther House
Historic house built by Carl Hilmar Guenther, founder of Pioneer Flour Mills, in 1859. Restored by the company as a museum, restaurant, and retail store. Telephone 210-227-1061. For additional information, visit
  IMAX Theatre-"Alamo...The Price of Freedom"
"Alamo...The Price of Freedom," is a 48-minute docudrama film that re-creates the 13-day seige and fall of the Alamo. Immense screen and magnetic stereo sound system places visitors in the middle of the action as the battle unfolds, as 189 defenders fought and died for the cause of Texas liberty. Telephone 210-247-4629. For additional information, visit
  SAS Shoe Factory
SAS Shoe Factory, 101 New Laredo Highway, telephone 877-782-7463 or 210-924-6507, Hours: Monday-Friday 9-6, Saturday 9-5. For additional information, visit
  San Antonio Museum of Art
Since its opening in 1981, the museum has become home to an array of Greek and Roman antiquities, Asian art, Latin American art, European and American paintings, contemporary art, Oceanic art, decorative art, and near Eastern and Islamic art. Housed in the historic Lone Star Brewery that was built in 1884. Telephone 210-978-8100. For additional information, visit
  San Antonio Zoo
More than 3,500 animals of 750 species found in one of the premier zoos in North America. This zoo, established in 1914 is the first zoo outside of Africa to produce a white rhino calf.
  Southwest School of Art and Craft
A community-based professional-level art school, visitors can see contemporary art exhibitions and hear lectures by visiting artists. The adjacent, contemporary Navarro Campus features a large gallery for contemporary art. Great restaurant open for lunch. For additional information, visit
  Steves Homestead
Located on the San Antonio River in the King William Historic District, was built in 1876 by Edward Steves, who immigrated to Texas in 1848 and later founded the Steves Lumber Company. Victorian-era mansion also features Carriage House with antique carriages on display, the Gardener's Quarters (now a visitor center) and beautiful landscaping. Telephone 210-225-5924.
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List

Gates of the Alamo (historically accurate novel)

Author: Stephen Harrigan

Description: A huge, riveting, deeply imagined novel about the siege and fall of the Alamo, an event that formed the consciousness of Texas and that resonates through American history. With its vibrant, unexpected characters and its richness of authentic detail, The Gates of the Alamo is an unforgettable re-creation of a time, a place, and a heroic conflict.

Empire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the Rise and Fall of the Comanches, the Most Powerful Indian Tribe in American History

Author: S. C. Gwynne

Description: S. C. Gwynne’s Empire of the Summer Moon spans two astonishing stories. The first traces the rise and fall of the Comanches, the most powerful Indian tribe in American history. The second entails one of the most remarkable narratives ever to come out of the Old West: the epic saga of the pioneer woman Cynthia Ann Parker and her mixed-blood son Quanah, who became the last and greatest chief of the Comanc

As Texas Goes...: How the Lone Star State Hijacked the American Agenda

Author: Gail Collins

Description: Not until she visited Texas, that proud state of big oil and bigger ambitions, did Gail Collins, the best-selling author and columnist for the New York Times, realize that she had missed the one place that mattered most in America’s political landscape. Through its vigorous support of banking deregulation, lax environmental standards, and draconian tax cuts, through its fierce championing of states rights, gun ownership, and, of course, sexual abstinence, Texas, with Governor Rick Perry’s presidential ambitions, has become the bellwether of a far-reaching national movement that continues to have profound social and economic consequences for us all. Like it or not, as Texas goes, so goes the nation.

Gone to Texas, a History of the Lone Star State

Author: Randolph Campbell

Description: Gone to Texas engagingly tells the story of the Lone Star State, from the arrival of humans in the Panhandle more than 10,000 years ago to the opening of the twenty-first century. Focusing on the state's successive waves of immigrants, the book offers an inclusive view of the vast array of Texans who, often in conflict with each other and always in a struggle with the land, created a history and an idea of Texas.

Sam Houston

Author: James L. Haley

Description: In the decades preceding the Civil War, few figures in the United States were as influential or as controversial as Sam Houston. In Sam Houston, Drawn from personal papers never before available as well as the papers of others in Houston’s circle, this biography will delight anyone intrigued by Sam Houston, Texas history, Civil War history, or America’s tradition of rugged individualism.

Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream: The Most Revealing Portrait of a President and Presidential Power Ever Written

Author: Doris Kearns Goodwin

Description: Widely praised and enormously popular, Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream is a work of biography like few others. With uncanny insight and a richly engrossing style, the author renders LBJ in all his vibrant, conflicted humanity.

El Mesquite: A Story of the Early Spanish Settlements Between the Nueces and the Rio Grande

Author: Elena Zamora O'Shea

Description: The open country of Texas between the Nueces River and the Rio Grande was sparsely settled through the nineteenth century, and most of the settlers who did live there had Hispanic names that until recently were rarely admitted into the pages of Texas history. In 1935, however, a descendant of one of the old Spanish land-grant families in the region-a woman, no less-found an ingenious way to publish the history of her region at a time when neither Tejanos nor women had much voice. She told the story from the perspective of an ancient mesquite tree, under whose branches much South Texas history had passed.

The Spanish Acequias of San Antonio

Author: Waynne Cox

Description: This is the first book on the remarkable 50-mile Spanish-era acequia system that supplied water to early San Antonio. It is believed to have been the most extensive such network within the present-day United States. One of the acequias, serving lands near Mission Espada, remains in use.

Crown Jewel of Texas, the Story of the San Antonio River

Author: Lewis Fisher

Description: Crown Jewel of Texas: The story of San Antonio's River is a detailed and fascinating account of how the town tried to manage the periodic and devastating flooding of the San Antonio River. That management effort took about a hundred years but finally resulted in the beautiful and astonishing river walk.

On the Border, an Environmental History of San Antonio

Author: Char Miller

Description: This collection of eleven essays, edited by Char Miller, examines the environmental history of San Antonio, drawing upon an interdisciplinary array of authors and insights to highlight the evolving relationship between the city's residents and the South Texas landscape, showing the citizens and the environment have shaped each other.

Friedrichsburg: Colony of the German Furstenverein

Author: Friedrich Armand Strubberg and James C. Kearney

Texas People, Texas Places

Author: Lonn Taylor

Description: Texas People, Texas Places again explores the very best of Texas geography, Texas history, and Texas personalities. In a state so famous for its pride, Taylor manages to write an exceptionally honest, witty, and wise book about Texas past and Texas present. This book is a story of men and women and places that have made this state great. From a small-town radio host to tight-fisted West Texas ranchers, and even to Taylor’s own family members, Taylor’s subjects paint a profound and dynamic picture.

From a Limestone Ledge: Some Essays and Other Ruminations about Country Life in Texas

Author: John Graves

Description: Some of the most sensible, genial prose west of the Mississippi. A kind of sequel to Hard Scrabble-recounting more about his twenty years of quiet combat with the forces of nature.

Texas, My Texas: Musings of the Rambling Boy

Author: Lonn Taylor

Description: In a collection of essays about Texas gathered from his West Texas newspaper column, Lonn Taylor traverses the very best of Texas geography, Texas history, and Texas personalities. In a state so famous for its pride, Taylor manages to write a very honest, witty, and wise book about Texas past and Texas present.

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