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Frequently Asked Questions: (Click on the Question to open and close the Answer)
There are two "Winter Texan Days" celebrated in Nuevo Progreso, MX.
On the first Friday in December a day of celebration is held to "Welcome Back" Winter Texans.
On March 21 Nuevo Progreso, MX celebrates "Tourist Day".
Winter Texans are mostly retirement age people, originating outside of Texas, who spend from a few weeks to several months "wintering" in Texas.
In other parts of the world these folks are called "Snow Birds". In some "Sun-Belt" regions, the term "Snow Bird" has developed a negative connotation. (To see what I mean, do a google search on the phrase "I hate snowbirds".) Here in Texas, we appreciated our Northern visitors. Not only do they bring millions of dollars into our economy, they also contribute in other ways. Volunteerism increases dramatically while they are here. With there arrival comes additional entertainment to be enjoyed by all.
Over-all the cost of living is lower in the South Texas Rio Grande Valkley than in any other Winter-Destination region. Click to see a
The Rio Grande Valley (RGV) refers to the delta region along the Rio Grande River which runs along the southernmost border of Texas. See it on the map
During the early 1900s, land developers introduced irrigation to the arid land in the area. This irrigation along with the tropical year-round climate made it possible to grow crops all year long. A strong marketing campaign began promoting the region as "The Magic Valley" to mid-western farmers and business entrepreneurs. Citrus orchards and truck farms sprang up all over the area making it one of the nations largest producers of fruit and vegetables.
It can easily be argued that "Winter Texans" were among the first land developers in the area during the late 1800s - early 1900s. Whereas they were not called Winter Texans at that time, they certainly fit the description as Valley land owners who also owned property in northern states in the US. While some stayed in the area as permanent residents, others came and went with the changing seasons. One example of this is Bess Glick who came to the Valley in 1926 aboard an excursion train provided by the land companies. Bess established a home here in the Valley but chose not to spend Summers here. She and her children traveled the primitive roads of the era, in their Model A Ford, from Paris, Illinois to South Texas each Fall and Spring. It was not until after World War II, when building materials became available, that land owners began building campgrounds in the region. This was begun to create spaces for family and friends to stay when they came to visit in the Winter. Motels also offered reasonable long term rates to accommodate the growing numbers of Winter visitors. In the 1960s - 1970s, as the demand for RV sites grew, there was a boom in RV Park construction. As more and more RVers decided to purchase park models, trailers and mobile homes the RV Parks added mobile home sites to their properties. It is not definitely documented who first coined the phrase "Winter Texan" but it seems to have come about because the term "snowbird", which is widely used in other parts of the country, came with a negative, almost derogative, connotation. Here in the Rio Grande Valley of South Texas, we proudly and anxiously welcome our Winter visitors who contribute much more to our lifestyle than mere economic boosts.