The Board of Trustees of the Museum of South Texas History is pleased to announce that the 2013 Heritage Ranch Gala will be held at Dos Lagos Ranch on March 23, 2013 at 6 p.m. In support of the museum and its mission to preserve and present the borderland heritage of South Texas and Northeastern Mexico, ranch owners Paul and Margaret Veale have graciously offered to host this unique event and open their beautiful ranch to the museum and its guests for this very special occasion. The event honors the museum’s 2013 Heritage Associate FRIENDS in a unique, relaxed setting and celebrates a long-enduring South Texas way of life – ranching.

Dos Lagos Ranch is located within the boundaries of the vast San Salvador del Tule Spanish Land Grant surveyed in 1794. One of the largest land grants in South Texas, 72 square leagues (approximately 315,391 acres), it was purchased in 1797 by Doña Rosa Maria Hinojosa de Ballí in the name of her son, Captain Juan Jose Ballí. Doña Rosa Maria Hinojosa de Ballí amassed a huge amount of land through inheritance and by purchase and became known as the “First Cattle Queen of Texas.” At the time of her death in 1803, she owned more than one million acres of land in what we now call the Rio Grande Valley.

Longhorn cattle still roam the range at Dos Lagos Ranch as do an abundance of native and exotic wildlife. Dos Lagos Ranch is a wildlife oasis and weekend get-a-way, a place where hobbies such as wildlife photography, hunting and horseback riding are enjoyed and shared with friends and family. The Veales are committed to be good stewards of the land and want to “Keep Texas Wild.”

On March 23, Gala guests will enjoy the drive out to the ranch spotting wildlife along the way and will be greeted with a cold beverage at Dos Lagos’ horse arena. Guests will not watch cutting horses or barrel racing there but rather will be treated to the beautiful sport of dressage from 6 to 7 p.m. Jenny Moore of Mission will be demonstrating classical dressage and Lorrie Hutchens Grover of Corpus Christi will be demonstrating North American Western Dressage. Click here for more information about this style of dressage.

After the demonstration, guests will head lakeside to the Gala site where they will enjoy exploring various tents filled with gourmet delights and a South Texas flair. Music by award-winning songwriter, john Arthur martinez, will fill the air and dance floor as guests enjoy kicking up their heels under a blanket of stars. Martinez’ music is described as Americana infused with folk, Latin and country.

To attend the Heritage Ranch Gala, advance reservations must be made by March 20 by calling the museum at 1-956-383-6911. Reservations are $165 per person for current FRIENDS of the museum and $185 per person otherwise. While there, guests may join or renew their FRIENDship to take immediate advantage of just one of several benefits.

Museum of South Texas History
Lisa K. Loebl