Waco, Texas – Part II

Dr Pepper Museum

We are always ready to take a behind the scenes tour and the Dr Pepper Museum did not disappoint.

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View of the Silos and Roof of First Baptist Church of Waco (above Dr Pepper sign) From Dr Pepper Building

Dr Pepper, created, manufactured, and sold in Waco, Texas, beginning in 1885, is considered the oldest soft drink of all America major brands. The soda flavor originated at Morrison’s Old Corner Drugstore.

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Mockup of Old Corner Drug Store

Unfortunately, the name Dr Pepper is lost to history, although the museum does have a collection of over a dozen different origin stories. Demand for the drink grew until in 1891 the Artesian Mfg. & Bottling Company was formed in Waco. The company later became the Dr Pepper Company and moved to Dallas in 1923.

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Jon Checking out the Bottling Equipment
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Artesian Well Once Used in Bottling Dr Pepper

The museum includes collections of the soft drink industry as well as Dr Pepper memorabilia, giving visitors a more complete history of the industry.

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Larger Scale Bottling Equipment

We stopped in the theater expecting an informational movie. Instead, we found a montage of historic television ads running on a loop. It was still fun to recall the various campaigns and slogans through the years. Remember, “I’m a Pepper, he’s a Pepper, she’s a Pepper, we’re a Pepper. Wouldn’t you like to be a Pepper too?” Sorry, for the earworm. I couldn’t resist.

 

I don’t drink much soda now, but visiting the museum brought back memories of drinking hot Dr Pepper and eating popcorn while watching scary movies on late night television. The cold war may have been looming outdoors, but I was warm and safe in my house.

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Dr Pepper Delivery Truck

The museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5:30 p.m. Tickets are $10.00 for adults, $8.00 for seniors and military personnel, $6.00 for students and children over 5 years.

Homestead Heritage

Homestead Heritage, an agrarian- and craft-based intentional Christian community, was located a short distance from the RV park where we stayed in Waco.

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Water Tower with Homestead Heritage Logo

Visitors won’t want to miss the Craft Village where gifts and handcrafted items are available to purchase along with heirloom furniture; organic grains, flour and baking mixes; groceries, meat and produce; and gardening and homesteading supplies.

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Homestead Organic Market and General Store

Take a self-guided tour through the various buildings and watch a basket maker or potter at work, a loom in operation, the gristmill grinding, and feel the heat from the forge. The smell of fresh sawdust in the woodworking building reminded me of my grandfather’s carpentry workshop.

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Homestead Gristmill at the Craft Village
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Inside the Working Gristmill
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Water Wheel that Runs the Gristmill

Walk through the gardens, rest in the shade, and get up close to the sheep grazing in the pasture.

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Gardens
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Windmill and Sheep
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Tri-colored Sheep
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The Basket Store
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The Forge

Interested in learning the skills to create traditional crafts? Visit The Ploughshare website for hands-on workshops, classes, and DVD courses. There are also free video courses.

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Red Bud in Bloom

It was a good thing the storage in our fifth wheel is limited. Otherwise, I would have broken our budget by buying up pottery, baskets, and a few scarves. We did buy a package of Cowboy Cookie Mix from the Gristmill and they were delicious.

Magnolia Market at the Silos

Fans of the Fixer Upper show on HGTV flock to Magnolia Market at the Silos on foot and by trolley, bike, and vehicle. We parked the truck near a trolley stop and hopped aboard. The trolley takes passengers on a 15-minute route through downtown Waco picking up and dropping off passengers along the way. Our driver pointed out popular restaurants, historical sites, and of course places to shop.

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Magnolia Silos Courtyard

We got off at Magnolia Market just because we had to see what all the fuss was about. A line wrapped around the corner bakery with hopeful guests dreaming of the fresh pastries, breads, and sweets that waited inside for them to buy.

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Long Waits for Pastries at the Bakery

We didn’t stand in line to see if it was worth the wait. Instead, we headed into the market, squeezing past customers gawking at the products for sale. Many of the items looked like props used to decorate the homes renovated on the Fixer Upper television show. Don’t expect antique, reclaimed, or locally handcrafted items. Made in India or China tags reveal an item’s origin.

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Magnolia Market Building

The store was filled with decorator items such as greenery and flowers for arrangements in vases and pots, table items including centerpieces, placemats, table runners, chargers, flatware, and dishware. Clocks and other wall hangings decorate the walls. Chip’s Corner includes T-shirts, baseball caps, hammers, and other tools and books. Prices appeared reasonable when compared to other home décor stores.

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One Section of the Building

Outside visitors will find a large sitting and play area complete with lawn games to play on the artificial grass, picnic tables under shade structures, planters, and food trucks in case the munchies attack.

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The Silos Play Area. No Dogs Allowed on the Artificial Grass.
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Snag a Beanbag and Rest Awhile
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Play a Game of Cornhole
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Grab Lunch and a Drink at the Food Trucks

In a back corner is the Magnolia Seed & Supply with raised gardens filled with herbs and leafy greens. I wish our garden looked like this. Of course, that would mean we would have to stay home and tend to it. Maybe when we’re done traveling.

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Magnolia Seed & Supply

 

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Leafy Greens Grown in Raised Beds

 

Magnolia Market at the Silos is a great place for couples or families looking for a place to relax, grab a bite to eat, play a few rounds of cornhole, or watch the people walk by. Oh, and don’t forget the shopping. Storage constraints saved my pocketbook again. I could have easily spent a hundred dollars or more.

It looks like the Dr Pepper Museum, traditional handicrafts, and home décor is all I can fit into this post. Next week I’ll finish up our time in Waco by featuring a couple of restaurants we tried in town and our visit to the George W. Bush Library and Museum in Dallas.

Safe Travels

2 thoughts on “Waco, Texas – Part II

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