Now that we got settled in Bentsen the time came to see what was around us and to get out and do some sightseeing. To our surprise there was so much in and around that we were not really sure were to start and if we could cover it all in three months. We decided to start close by and headed out.
Mission was the closest city to the park so this is where we started. We headed out to La Lomita Chapel as our first stop. Getting there was interesting to start with – we headed out not really sure where we were going and found ourselves on top of a levee that runs along the Rio Grande River. There were orange/grapefruit orchards on one side and the river on the other. We came to an area where we thought the chapel was and found it locked up with No Trespassing signs everywhere. Looking around I saw another road on the other side of the chapel that really did not look like it went anywhere but we tried it and it lead us to the parking lot for the chapel and the park.
The chapel was built in 1865 and is only 12x25. It is built out of sandstone and still has the original brick floors and heavy beamed ceiling. It was truly unique and interesting. The outside area has an outdoor oven and a working water well.
After we left the Chapel we drove further down the levee and found Anzalduas Park. This was an interesting park, quite large and really beautiful. There is a dam located at the park on the Rio Grande River. It was very interesting in that you can see into Mexico and their park. The area had lot of picnic tables and trees, great place for a family day out. There is a bird blind so you can do bird watching also. While we were there, on the Mexico side, there was a party going on and it was something – loud music and dancing.
As we headed out of the area we ran across something that we found very interesting and went to look closer. We found out it was a high school -Juan Diego Academy. It was interesting in that all the security given to schools today and concern about making schools safe it appeared they took it very seriously. There was a guard shack just to the right and you had to go through him to get on the ground. I have not seen this type of security any other school we have every been at. No chance of skipping out or playing hooky – lol!!
There were some interesting ruins that were in one area and asking around we found out it was the location of the original church years ago. We would have like to learn more about the school but it is a private school and there is really not much information about, but it was really neat looking.