Christmas is only seven days away! While some homes chose to opt out of a holiday display this year, many families and neighborhoods are continuing the tradition this holiday season.
So put on your favorite Christmas tunes, grab some hot chocolate and drive to these holiday displays around town for a festive experience.
Spindler Family Light Show, Georgetown
With over 28,000 LED lights, 17 lighted trees and a computerized light show, the Spindler family is continuing the tradition of lighting up their Georgetown home located at 2441 Candle Ridge Trail. The family is celebrating their eighth annual light show, and families around town have made it a priority to attend. Along with the light show, the Spindler family is collecting unwrapped toys for the Williamson County Brown Santa, which gives presents to kids from low-income families.
Tune in to 88.5 FM while driving through the show for the ultimate experience. The show runs everyday from 6-10 p.m., so grab your friends and family and head over to the Spindler Family Light Show. More information can be found on their Facebook page.
Chinati Court, Cedar Park
Despite the pandemic, the Chinati Court cul-de-sac is lighting up the whole street for a safe, socially distanced light experience. The display of lights is a contribution from different families in the cul-de-sac, offering a walk-through or drive-thru experience. The families ask that you socially distance in groups of six if you chose to walk through the displays. The holiday show will also be taking in donations for Brown Santa. More information on the Chinati Court holiday show can be found on their Facebook page.
Rhodes Family Christmas, Cedar Park
The Rhodes Family Christmas will continue lighting up Cedar Park for the 20th year in a row. The family is encouraging people to drive by and enjoy the Christmas spirit after a challenging year. The holiday display is also a collection site for the Cedar Park Area Food Bank. The display will run until Jan. 1 from 5:45-10 p.m. at 2410 Sharon Dr., so drive by for a shiny, festive experience. More information on the Rhodes Family Christmas can be found on their Facebook page.
Maywald Christmas Lights, 10505 Twilight Vista
Maywald Christmas Lights
Over 200,000 lights will illuminate Twilight Vista this year. The Maywalds are continuing a 12-year tradition with this year's display, which is bigger and better than in years past. The display is completely free, but the family asks guests to make a donation to the Make-A-Wish foundation when entering. The event is a walk-through experience, although the family encourages guests to remain socially distant from each other. The display will run everyday until Jan. 3 from 6-10 p.m. More information on the Maywald Christmas Lights can be found here.
Diagon Alley ATX, Slaughter Lane & Bungalow
Have a very Harry Christmas this year by attending Diagon Alley ATX's Christmas show. The display is known in Austin for its Diagon Alley Halloween makeover, but with 2020 being such a tough year, the family turned Diagon Alley into a winter wonderland for a festive holiday experience.
Inspired by the Yule Ball in the fourth Harry Potter book, the display transports you into the wizarding world. The display is free, but donations are being accepted for Foster Angels of Central Texas, Variety Texas and ZACH Theatre. The holiday display runs every half hour Monday through Friday from 5:30-8:30 p.m. and until 9:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. More information on Diagon Alley ATX can be found on their Facebook page.
This is part of a holiday series counting down to Christmas, so make sure to visit Austonia tomorrow, as we reach six days until Christmas.
- Holiday Events to bring you Christmas cheer in 2020 - austonia ›
- Countdown to Christmas: Dogs of Austin are ready for the holidays ... ›
- Countdown to Christmas: DIY crafts for the whole family - austonia ›
- Countdown to Christmas: Christmas songs by Austin musicians ... ›
- Where to order your Christmas dinner in Austin - austonia ›
- Countdown to Christmas: Holiday themed bars in Austin - austonia ›
- Recipes for the sweetest Christmas treats, cookies, donuts - austonia ›
- Where to volunteer, donate this holiday season in texas - austonia ›
- Santa poses with newborn babies at Ascension Seton in Austin - austonia ›
- Austin churches adjust and make plans for Christmas service - austonia ›
- Old Christmas traditions in Austin and their history - austonia ›
- Countdown to Christmas: New traditions for this holiday season - austonia ›
- Countdown to Christmas: Why Christmas in Austin is better - austonia ›
- 11 Christmas light shows to visit in Austin near you - austonia ›
- Santa brings Christmas cheer to preemie babies at Austin hospital - austonia ›
- Christmas lights near me in Austin - austonia ›
So you want to buy a house?
To anyone trying to get on the "housing ladder," it's been a discouraging couple of years as prices skyrocketed in a market crowded with buyers bidding against each other for just about any available home.
Things may be calming down, with the Austin Board of REALTORS reporting fewer sales and more available homes this summer.
Mortgage rates have more than doubled in the last year, from around 3% to well over 6% on a 30-year fixed rate loan, getting even more of a bump this week after the Federal Reserve raised bank rates on Wednesday.
So how affordable are homes right now? That, of course, depends on what you want and how much you're able or willing to pay, but here are some rough estimates of what a typical buyer would pay to buy a $650,000 home, which would be considered "mid-price" in today's market.
Mortgage banker Chris Holland (NMLS 211033) of Austin's Sente Mortgage ran some numbers for Austonia to illustrate a typical purchase.
Holland says that while the 30-year fixed rate mortgage is often mentioned in the media, the most popular loan that he's seeing now is a 7/1 adjustable rate mortgage, which has a fixed rate for 7 years and then adjusts every year based on market rates, with a limit on how much it can increase each year. The interest is amortized over a 30-year period. Adjustable Rate Mortgages (ARMs) offer lower rates than fixed rate loans.
Here are the numbers, which are examples. In practice, exact numbers vary with a buyer's credit rating and overall financial situation, and with the rate, which can move up or down at any time.
- $650,000 home purchase price
- 7/1 ARM at 5.875%
- 5% down payment, equals $32,500
- 95% financed, equals $617,500
- $4,990 payment, including principle and interest (P&I), insurance, and property tax
- Typically, a borrower's debt to income ratio needs to be at or below 45%. So for this mortgage, a borrower, or borrowers, would need income of roughly $11,100/month, or $133,200/year. That number could be higher, depending on the buyer's outstanding credit balances on things like credit cards and car loans.
Holland says he's had a lot of clients approved for loans who were house hunting but have put that on hold, hoping prices come down.
Camp Fimfo Waco, a brand new camping resort, is kicking off football and fall camping season in style! With top-notch amenities, premium accommodations, and 10 weekends of fall fun, there’s no better place to have a fall camping getaway, especially if you’re a Baylor football fan!
Fall promises to be a one-of-a-kind camping experience. From Sept. 16 to Nov. 24, weekends will be packed with fall-themed activities, including special Halloween weekends in October. Campers can enjoy activities like fall crafts, campground trick-or-treating, costume contests, site decorating, outdoor movie nights, and more!
Packages and Ways to Stay
Camp Fimfo Waco
Located just 5 miles from McLane Stadium, Camp Fimfo Waco is the perfect place to stay during home game weekends. Skip the stuffy hotel room and embrace the great outdoors before cheering on the Baylor Bears! Campers can purchase a Baylor Tailgating Package that includes a pre-game meal from Executive Chef Sean Kelley and transportation to and from the game! Chef Kelley will also be cooking up delicious, elevated tailgating meals near the stadium so make sure to check out The Plaid Plate food truck before the game.
Stay in style and comfort, no matter your camping preference! At Camp Fimfo Waco, there are multiple ways to stay. Red Carpet RV sites come with a concrete pad and patio, full hook-ups, cable hook-up, a charcoal grill, fire ring and fire pit. Back-in or pull-thru options are available, as well as coveted spots tucked along the Bosque River!
Don’t have an RV? Not a problem, Camp Fimfo Waco has cabins too! Book a Riverview Firewheel Cabin if you’re looking for an air-conditioned oasis for the whole family. Complete with a kitchen and private bathroom, this cabin can fit up to 10 people. Elevate your stay by adding on a golf cart or snag a private cabana by the pool for guaranteed shade. With wifi available throughout the park, you can stay connected during your stay!
Amenities and Activities
Camp Fimfo Waco
Camp Fimfo Waco features lots of amenities to fill your days with fun, whether you’re a kid or kid at heart. After challenging your friends to a game of pickleball, basketball, or mini golf, go for a dip in the resort-style, heated pool - open daily through October! Stay on the weekends through October to enjoy the interactive splash playground. With plenty of ways to burn off energy, like the jumping pillow or playground, you can be sure to end the day with a peaceful night around the campfire!
Right now, you can get the fourth night FREE when you book three nights with the promo code BONUS! Check out the Offers page for full details and more promo codes!