Splash Into Summer for National Waterpark Day

It comes as no surprise that a summer favorite for most people is spending a day at the waterpark.   With the blistering heat and hot temperatures, who doesn’t want to take a dip in a pool or float along a lazy river?  The initial cool blast of water from diving into a pool is the best way to remedy the heat waves of the sun.  With two waterparks in Bell County, families can spend the day out on the water and make the perfect summer memories. 

Lions Junction Family Water Park

Lions Junction Family Water Park is a local favorite in Temple.  This water park has several amenities for all ages.  This includes a lazy river, a pool with attached diving board, and an aqua climb wall.  There is also a lounge area where you can dry off and work on getting that golden, summer tan.   There are also two three-story water slides to race down.  The thrill-seekers in your family will love to take a turn riding down these giant slides into a pit of ice cold water. 

For the little ones, the water park also has a splash pad and splash zone.  These splash zones have fountains and misting spray systems that provide the young children with a fun, safe water experience.  The little ones can splash around to their hearts’ content in this little play area.  And, for anyone who has worked up an appetite after a full day of swimming, Lions Junction also has an on-site snack and concession stand where you can buy ice cream and drinks.  Swimming all day can take a lot of energy.  The on-site concession stand is stocked with poolside ice cream treats for your enjoyment when you’re ready for a break from the water. 

Summer Fun Water Park

Another great waterpark in the area is Summer Fun Water Park.  Located just a few minutes away in Belton, this water park will be a hit with the whole family.  One of the main attractions here is a 900 ft. water slide.  With twists and turns, this slide gives you amusement park vibes in a local package.  There are three water slides at this park.  Tubes are available to rent for free. 

For the adults in town, Summer Fun hosts Adult Night events throughout the summer where people aged 21+ can come to the park from 8 pm to 12 am. The water park allows guests to bring their own beverages and enjoy the park and all its amenities.   Float the lazy river with a cold drink in hand and a classic summer soundtrack.  These event nights cost $20 to get in and are sure to be a fun experience you won’t forget!  Along with Adult Night, the park also hosts several Family Night events throughout the summer months. Tickets for this event start at $8. These events take place from 7 pm. to 10 p.m. and provide the family with a night of music, swimming, and fun!  


 National Waterpark Day was made for splashing around in the pool, riding a tube through the lazy river, and seeking out some thrills with large water slides.  Thanks to Lions Junction and Summer Fun, anyone visiting Temple will have plenty of options when seeking out these water attractions.  What are you waiting for? Take a dip in the pool this Waterpark Day! 

Temple to host overnight stop on 2021 Great Race

Temple, Texas, will host the first overnight stop on the 2021 Hemmings Motor News Great Race presented by Hagerty Saturday, June 19, race organizers have announced.

The Great Race, the world’s premiere old car rally, will bring 120 of the world’s finest antique automobiles to town for the $150,000 event, with the first car rolling into the Downtown Santa Fe Plaza starting at 4:45 p.m.

In all, the participants in the event will cover more than 2,300 miles in 9 days. The start will be in front of the Alamo in San Antonio, on June 19. The race will finish on June 27 in Greenville, S.C.

Teams and cars from Japan, England, Germany, Canada, and every corner of the United States will be participating in their vintage automobiles dating back as far as 1916.

“There are more than 500 people just in our entourage from all around the world taking part in this incredible adventure,” director Jeff Stumb said.

Along the route, competitors will travel through 10 states – Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

The Great Race, which began 38 years ago, is not a speed race, but a time/speed/distance rally. The vehicles, each with a driver and navigator, are given precise instructions each day that detail every move down to the second. They are scored at secret checkpoints along the way and are penalized one second for each second either early or late. As in golf, the lowest score wins.

Cars start – and hopefully, finish – one minute apart if all goes according to plan. The biggest part of the challenge other than staying on time and following the instructions is getting an old car to the finish line each day, organizers say.

Each stop on the Great Race is free to the public and spectators will be able to visit with the participants and to look at the cars for several hours. It is common for kids to climb in cars for a first-hand look.

Cars built in 1974 and earlier are eligible, with most entries having been manufactured before World War II. In the 2019 Great Race a 1916 Hudson won the event from Riverside, Calif., to Tacoma, Wash. The 2021 winners will again receive $50,000 of the $150,000 total purse.

A 1916 Hudson Pikes Peak Hillclimber and a 1917 Peerless racer are the oldest cars scheduled to be in the 2021 Great Race this summer.

Over the decades, the Great Race has stopped in hundreds of cities big and small, from tiny Austin, Nev., to New York City.

“When the Great Race pulls into a city it becomes an instant festival,” Stumb said. “Last year we had a couple of overnight stops with more than 10,000 spectators on our way to having 250,000 people see the Great Race during the event.”

The event was started in 1983 by Tom McRae and it takes its name from the 1965 movie, The Great Race, which starred Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon, Natalie Wood and Peter Falk. The movie is a comedy based on the real-life 1908 automobile race from New York to Paris. In 2004, Tony Curtis was the guest of the Great Race and rode in his car from the movie, the Leslie Special.

The Great Race gained a huge following from late-night showings on ESPN when the network was just starting out in the early 1980s. The first entrant, Curtis Graf of Irving, Texas, is still a participant today.

The event’s main sponsors are Hemmings Motor News, Hagerty, Coker Tire, and Reliable Carriers.

For more information, go to www.greatrace.com or contact Jeff Stumb at jeff@greatrace.com or by calling him at 423-648-8542.

Temple, Texas Is the Power of Travel

Temple, Texas Is the Power of Travel

This National Travel and Tourism Week (NTTW), there is more reason than ever to celebrate the collective strength of the U.S. travel and tourism industry and its dynamic workforce.

The 38th annual NTTW, taking place May 2-8, recognizes the Power of Travel and the critical role our industry will play in bringing back our vibrant communities, restoring

the economy, rebuilding our workforce, and reconnecting America.

 Prior to the pandemic, the travel industry was a powerful economic engine, supporting jobs and driving local economies in every pocket of America. The industry had experienced 107 straight months of growth, generated $2.6 trillion in economic output, supported 17 million American jobs, and delivered a $51 billion trade surplus to the U.S.

Unfortunately, that strong growth trend plummeted last year due to the pandemic. Travel spending in the U.S. declined 42%, costing the economy $1.1 trillion, while hardworking Americans supported by travel made up a staggering 65%

of all U.S. unemployment.

 However, Temple, Texas – and the travel industry – is resilient.

 While we faced extraordinary challenges in the past year, our industry united like never before, lifted each other up, aided one another, and devoted ourselves fully to the task of supporting and restoring all sectors of travel.

Temple’s Destination Marketing Team is participating in NTTW by suggesting that we Rediscover Temple and its museums, attractions, restaurants, and outdoor spaces.

Enjoy FREE admission to local museums this week.

Czech Heritage Museum & Genealogy Center
119 W French Ave
Temple, TX 76501
FREE Admission May 3 – May 8

Temple Railroad & Heritage Museum
315 W Avenue B
Temple, TX 76501
FREE Admission May 3 – May 7
Tickets are required for National Train Day on May 8th. https://bit.ly/3sB5nYt

Bell County Museum
201 N Main St
Belton, TX 76513
FREE Admission Always

 As we follow travel sentiment, it is refreshing to learn that in April 52% of Americans booked a hotel room. More than 88% of Americans have made tentative leisure trip plans, and 77% will make a trip in the next 3 months for the purpose of relaxation and fun.

(Destination Analysts)

Teresa Anderson, FCDME

Destination Marketing Manager

City of Temple, TX

The Perfect Gifts For the Holiday Season

Shop Small, Gift Well

The holiday season is here.  With the Christmas cheer, comes an endless list of shopping to do.  After all, Christmastime is the season of giving.  Whether you are shopping for family, friends, or even a curtesy gift for the mailman or coworkers, there’s one thing to keep in mind.  Handmade or local goods make the perfect gifts and help the economy!  So often we are given generic gifts or gift cards from chain stores and major retailers, but the best gifts are personal, handpicked favorites from the local farmers markets, vendors, and businesses.  Check out Temple’s local small businesses for one-of-a-kind gifts.

Booth at The Hub

Boutique Clothing For Women:

Boutique clothing and accessories is always a great idea for the fashionable women in your life.  Throughout Bell County there’s plenty of these fantastic, local shops to stop by and do some holiday shopping.  Whether you are looking for accessories like jewelry, hats, and scarves, or on the search for a stunning holiday outfit to gift, you’re sure to find something for all the ladies on your list. Some of our fantastic boutiques include Brickwood Boutique, Zootys Boutique, The Shoppes on Main in Salado, and The Hub. With all kinds of home goods, apparel, and more, The Hub is an excellent stop for local holiday shopping.

The Small Farm Holiday Pack

[Photo curtesy of The Small Farm]

Bath and Body

Looking to gift homemade soaps, spa kits, lotions, or candles?  The Small Farm both has wonderful options to choose from.  The Small Farm makes lotions, soaps, and gift sets featuring an ingredient local to the farm, goat milk.  Support this local small business and stock up on a few of their holiday gift sets.

Emporium Spices

Emporium Spices

Emporium Spices has all kinds of mixes, blends, and spices to choose from.  The cook or baking enthusiast in your family will love a gift from a local spice manufacturer. Emporium Spices sells anything from poultry seasonings, guacamole kits, and bread mixes to 5 pack gift boxes.


[Photo curtesy of Treno Pizzeria and Taproom]

Treno Pizzeria And Taproom

Treno’s is a downtown Temple favorite.  Lovers of this pizza place enjoy the ranch as much as the pizza. Stop by the gift shop in First Street Roasters to find home goods from local vendors and the infamous bottled ranch Treno’s has to offer.  The ranch comes in several delicious flavors.  Gift your food-enthusiast friends one of these condiments.

[Photo curtesy of Peggy’s Coffee House]

Peggy’s Coffee House:

A local coffee shop with lots of character.  This coffee shop is located inside the Temple Mall and has specialty drinks like Butter Beer, Double stuffed Oreo, and The Jordan.  Give the gift of java chips this holiday season by grabbing a gift card to this local coffee stop, buying novelty mugs, or buying coffee by the pound.

Antiques and Collectibles:

Unique, curiosities and antiques can also make excellent gifts.  For something unique, one-of-a-kind, and vintage you can stop by a few of our exciting shopping areas in the downtown district. The Parlour Antiques, 2nd Street Emporium, and Relics Antiques are all filled with fascinating finds and gifts that are in a league of their own.  For fans of collectibles, all things vintage, and unique gifts, these shops are worth looking around.

Regional Gift Ideas

Salado Glassworks: Salado Glassworks hosts several blow-your-own-glass events throughout the year. Gifting tickets to one of these events will surely leave the artists on your list with something fun to look forward to.  Upcoming at the Salado Glassworks shop are ornament crafting and other holiday themed events.

Dough Re Mi: Gifting snacks and sweet treats is always a great idea for friends and family with a bit of a sweet tooth!  Dough Re Mi, a local treat shop in Belton, has edible cookie dough that comes in a variety of flavors.  Gift a pint or two of these delicious doughs.

McWha Books and The Book Cellar: Give the Gift of Reading.  The readers in your life will love personal book recommendations, first editions, and classic favorites.  Peruse the shelves at McWha Books in Belton and The Book Cellar in Temple to find the perfect book.

Texas Tour Gear: Have a musician in your life? Nothing makes a better gift than musical instruments or accessories for guitars and drums.  Stop by this shop in Belton for musicals wares and equipment.

The Candy Wall at The HubGifts, Guides, and Holiday Finds

Hand-crafted and unique gifts are always some of the most cherished items gifted during the holidays.  No friend, family member, co-worker, or significant other is quite alike.  With unique personalities comes the reason for personal, one-of-a-kind gifts.  Shop downtown Temple for curiosities, fashionable favorites, food, and more!