Murder Mystery Dinner Mayhem at Old Glory Ranch happens several times a year. Although we are often known more as a wedding venue, we are having fun seeking out other ventures and creative ways to serve our clients as an event venue.
What is a Murder Mystery Dinner?
A Murder Mystery Dinner is a type of theater where audience members interact with volunteer cast members to solve a fictitious crime. Clues are gathered as suspects are interviewed by the emcee as well as questioned by other characters and members of the audience. The guests try to put the clues together throughout the dinner before the final review. To add to the fun, many people come in period dress even if they are not a suspect or witness.
The Evening’s Agenda:
- Gates Open and Guests arrive to check-in and to enjoy complimentary beverages, appetizers, and a bit of mingling.
- Dinner is served. As you enjoy the delicious meal, the crime is reviewed, suspects are introduced, and the interrogation begins.
- There is a brief intermission while dessert is served. You may mingle with the characters and see if you can glean any extra information. Top-notch detectives are on the watch throughout the night!
There are often a few casualties along the way, but always in fun!
- The plot thickens as the last of the suspects are questioned and the clues are revealed. Guests have a chance to confer with one another and then submit their guesses of who they think committed the crime before the guilty party can get away.
- The Big Reveal and apprehension of the “murderer” at the end!
After much laughter and shenanigans, the night draws to its inevitable end. We hope that you can join us to experience your own Murder Mystery Dinner Mayhem in the near future!
Check out “Murder Most English” on July 27th &
Old Glory Ranch’s latest “Antique Truck” addition allows us to continue the bridal tradition of something old and something new. Our 1954 International Harvester R112 purchased originally by a farmer living outside St Louis was once a farm truck. I am quite sure it did not have an inkling of what the future might bring. It has now become a treasured vehicle at our Texas Hill Country venue, Old Glory Ranch, in Wimberley
Interesting facts about our Antique Truck:
- Bryce Engelhart purchased the truck in December 1985 for $3600.
- In the first four years, Bryce drove the truck 100,000 miles around the United States.
- It visited Steamboat Springs, Las Vegas, California, and all over Texas as well as the Midwest.
- The truck has attracted a lot of attention and has been well photographed and has even received a few movie offers.
- Bryce purchased tires for the truck in 1990 for $95 each and they lasted for 27 years. They had to finally be replaced in 2017 for $265 each.
- The truck was once maroon and at one time lay in pieces before becoming transformed into today’s version.
- Many adventures and memories made before Bryce finally made Wimberley his home in 1994.
The truck then became a popular departure vehicle for our newlyweds at Old Glory Ranch and as even helped a bride reach her ceremony at the Wedding Deck.
One of our most beautiful and popular departures involve the Antique Truck and gerbs.
Bryce recently retired to begin a new chapter in his life. He deemed Old Glory Ranch as a worthy place to leave his antique truck. We are so glad that he did so it can continue send our Old Glory Ranch couples off to their own unique adventures. We warmly welcome our new addition and look forward to all the new memories we will make together.
Spring is Here!
The bluebonnets have arrived at Old Glory Ranch. We know that spring is here when we peer out the front door of our hill country chapel and see an exquisite field of blue. Our Texas state flower, the bluebonnet, transforms our beautiful venue into a breathtaking portrait that adds a special touch to any wedding or event.
Wimberley brides choose April in hopes of having the field full of bluebonnets at their Texas Hill Country wedding. They do their research and try to lock in the perfect weekend for their dream wedding. Alas, only Mother Nature can choose the lucky one. Bluebonnets may bloom at the end of March or hide until April. It really is a gamble as to which weekend will prove to be the best and which bride is the luckiest.
Bluebonnets are a huge part of Texas much like the clover is synonymous with Ireland. People love to drive around the hill country to find the perfect field of flowers for a quick photo.
We love the bluebonnets so much that we have “Miss Texas Moobonnet” watching over our bluebonnet field throughout the year.
Indian folklore called the flower a gift from the Great Spirit. Many of the men of the 27th legislature in 1901 wanted to go with the cactus or cotton boll. Instead they bowed to the ladies’ wishes and voted in the bluebonnet as our state flower on March 7, 1901. It was definitely a lady, Lady Bird Johnson, that played a major role in making sure we all have bluebonnets to enjoy every spring.
However it came to be, we eagerly await their arrival each year at Old Glory Ranch and love the unique hill country touch they add to all of our spring weddings and special events.
A New Year for the Wedding Deck Tree
It is hard to believe that we are beginning a New Year. New beginnings are often a time of reflection to contemplate what we have achieved and things we have missed. We reminisce about the good times and try to regroup after the curve balls thrown by Mother Nature.
As we begin this New Year, we begin to think of our beautiful tree that has graced the Wedding Deck over the years since Old Glory Ranch was founded in 1997. We wonder about the stories it could tell.
The Wedding Deck Giving Tree
It has seen many beautiful weddings and witnessed the thrill of new and old relationships and whispered dreams and promises. It has also seen the change of many a season and the tragedy these seasons sometimes bring.
It experienced the Memorial Day flood in May of 2015 withstanding the powerful surge of water as it watch the destruction and devastation that followed. On a more positive note, it helped create a Winter Wonderland during the Wimberley “Blizzard” of 2017.
As we usher in the New Year, we hope to be as steady and strong as our beautiful Wedding Deck tree while we embrace whatever the year may bring. It makes us want to better prepare for the future and be the best I can be. We wish the tree could share and hold its own breakout session at our Old Glory Ranch Wellness Reset as we believe it has much to share and we have much to learn. Instead, we will place the future of our health in the hands of the very accomplished professionals that will be presenting on January 24th and 25th.
In the meantime, we hope the New Year will bring all of you multitudes of joy and happiness and endless memories of love and laughter. And if you should have time, please join us for our Old Glory Ranch Wellness Reset and perhaps visit our tree for a dose of wisdom as well. This estimated 500-year-old bald cypress is indeed “The Giving Tree.”
Unexpected Winter Wonderland in the Hill Country
Leave it to the Texas Hill Country weather to provide us with winter weather in the 80s on Tuesday, December 5th, and 3 inches of snow on
Thursday night, December 7th.
Photo by Darcie Westerlund
The sudden change brought out the child in everyone as pictures of Snow Angels, snowmen, and snowball fights took over social media. Having not seen snow like this since 1985, everyone was caught up in a frenzy of disbelief and laughter as they began to enjoy every moment. The delight continued as the mesmerizing Winter Wonderland created by the snow was revealed the next morning looking less like the Wimberley they knew and more like a Norman Rockwall painting.
The change of scenery may have only lasted a short while, but all were amazed by what a difference a day can make with the help of the Texas weather.
Miniature Donkeys are such a big part of Old Glory Ranch as we have over 30 of them grazing peacefully in our pastures. The mini burros have been part of the landscape at OGR and an integral part of our events since we opened in 1997!
Many times, people come to Old Glory because they have seen the donkeys online or heard about them from friends. These little charmers are not always the first thought of a newly engaged couple as they begin compiling the guest list. However, beer burros are a wonderful novelty to add to your special day! As you are planning who to invite to your wedding at Old Glory Ranch, don’t forget the most sought after guests… miniature donkeys.
Frequently, couples think the children at the wedding will adore the donkeys, but your adult guests will love these beer packing burros just as much.
There is little else that is as unique as miniature donkeys serving bottled beer, juice boxes or bottled water during cocktail hour. They create a bond with your guests to help them begin those initial conversations, as two families become one. The donkeys are also an icebreaker at corporate events or private parties, creating a more relaxed atmosphere.
They are very skilled and versatile as they can serve numerous other items such as chips and queso. The donkeys often have their pictures taken as much as the bride and groom. The mini burros are never released from “duty” until all the “people guests” have had an opportunity to take that priceless selfie with our “donkey guests.”
For more information about our donkeys, how to incorporate them into your Old Glory event or to purchase purchase your very own, visit our Miniature Donkeys page.
Since the horrific Memorial Day Flood in 2015, we are proud to have been able to host numerous meaningful events at the Wedding Deck on our glorious stretch of the Blanco River. The Wedding Deck at Old Glory Ranch has been a sacred place to so many people over the past 20 years.
Just days after the tragic flood we were only expecting to see a barren landscape pilled with rubble. We got as close as possible to the river with a glimmer of hope for our splendid Wedding Deck Tree.
Although our peaceful paradise was unrecognizable, we spotted a hopeful site of some Cypress branches being pounded by the still raging river. We just knew it was the top of our “Giving Tree.” Feeling the emotional words of Frances Scott Keyes, “O say can you see, by the dawn’s early light, what so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming…..” The swaying branches were so gallantly streaming and ultimately gave proof that our tree was still there!
The Epic Flood changed the landscape of this magical wedding site forever. However, this magnificent cypress tree has endured an estimated 500 years of weather events to provide a symbol of strength and commitment for so many OGR couples.
We feel very blessed to have been spared this ancient beauty.
As we all learned that night, the river has a mind of its own. When the Blanco River came ripping through our valley that frightening night, the forceful waters skipped right passed this tiny section of Old Glory Ranch which is so special to so many people. This was another sign of the sanctification of this tree. What a wonderful foundation this tree provides, as couples exchange vows and begin their married life together.
Surrounded by the few remaining cypress trees, our little piece of heaven is the perfect backdrop for your wedding, baptism, photo shoot or anniversary picnic. Recently, a picturesque baptism began with a blessing in the sparkling waters of the Blanco River. To the delight of everyone attending, it concluded with the release of doves. The doves were truly a symbolic gesture of peace with the river. Also, the sound of the lively flow of water in the background as it makes its way over the smooth rocks is a reminder that water is a symbol of life.
Exactly two years later, with bittersweet reflection, we celebrate and find peace, joy and inspiration on the Blanco River!
Anthology Photography & Darcie Westerlund Photography
Should our nieces & nephews be in the wedding, or is this day just about us?
Some couples think it is a family affair while others feel the distraction of children in the ceremony takes away from the bride’s “Queen for a Day Moment”.
Making children an attraction at a wedding:
1) Choose appropriate ages for the task. Three to Eight Years Old is usually the ideal age for Flower Girls and Ring Bearers. If you must have a very young child, a wagon pulled by an older participant is a good idea. Taking these young children out after making their appearance, avoids unrealistic expectations.
2) Preparation for the event should include rehearsing. Tell them what a special privilege it is to honor the bride & groom.
3) Emphasize good behavior such as acting like the big boys & girls.
4) Fashionable clothing like Mommy & Daddy can sometimes encourage “best behavior”. Little girls love to be the “Princess for the Day,” while little boys love to dress like Daddy on a special occasion.
5) Attitudes & expressions of children can sometimes ad humor & a sense of relaxation to the ceremony. Old Glory Ranch had a 3 ½ year old twin boy who announced when he exited the chapel after sitting down in the middle of the ceremony, ” ’Dis’ wedding is too ‘Wong’.”
6) When children are expected to stay at the reception, childcare is an excellent idea. Old Glory Ranch provides childcare & entertainment for these children so parents & grandparents can enjoy the celebration. Young children can get very tired & cranky when the evening gets late. Taking young children home after the ceremony is also an option.
Well behaved and adorable children can certainly add great joy to the pomp & circumstance of a wedding. If the bride & groom are set on children in their ceremony, cute kids can lighten the tension & provide wonderful photo opts for the memory book. This is a definite attraction. Some couples still view these precious children as a distraction. When choosing the “attraction” route, always be prepared for the unexpected!
Still on the fence when deciding whether to invite children or not?
Check out these articles from Wedding Wire (The 12 Secrets to Well-Behaved Ring Bearers and Flower Girls) and CNN.com (13 rules for a kid-friendly wedding (or not).
Photos by Darcie Westerlund of Innovative Photography
Lights, Camera, Action … A Tasty Twist on Texas Hill Country Weddings
Over the years, Old Glory Ranch has been a stunning backdrop for hundreds of weddings, corporate picnics and team building, private parties and a variety of film and photography shoots at this picturesque Texas Hill Country Ranch. But this was the tastiest scene yet… and it was all about a sandwich! On August 31st, the captivating Chapel Hall Patio and Oak Grove were transformed into a saucy, smoke filled and buzzing film set making Old Glory Ranch the perfect location as a Texas Hill Country background for smoker pits and briskets. This is almost a sacramental scenario to a Texan!
Who knew a sandwich had so many “dressing rooms” (AKA refrigerators), so many “make-up artists” and even a bit of a “movie star attitude.” It was a glamorous sandwich indeed! It was also a delight to play host to such a “delicious group” of people at Old Glory Ranch, and we look forward to having them back soon. They even let us take part in some of the action…roll camera role!