Salado, Texas

First incorporated in 1867, Salado is a town in Bell County, Texas, United States. It is positioned between the cities of Austin and Waco. The sole purpose of the incorporation of Salado was to build a bridge across Salado Creek. There is archaeological evidence of a Native American settlement that predated modern Salado roughly 15,500 years ago. The first record of white settlers in the area occurred around 1836.

Naming Of Salado 

It is said that the settlement got its name from the Spaniard explorers who passed through the area. They assigned the area, which they saw as a "small oasis,"- Salado, which means "salty" or "salted," possibly referring to the local water of the mineral springs.

Climate And Geography Of Salado

Salado has a humid subtropical climate according to the Köppen climate classification system. The climate of Salado is characterized by hot, muggy, and humid summers, leading to short, cool winters. Temperatures in Salado typically vary from 4 °C to 36 °C and rarely are the temperatures below -3 °C or above 38 °C.

Salado Springs in Salado
Salado Springs in Salado. Image credit: Larry D. Moore, via Wikimedia Commons.

Located along the Balcones Fault, Salado is known for the emergence of surface waters, and Salado Creek was the first landmark to be selected as a Texas Natural Landmark. 

Population Of Salado

As per the 2020 United States Census, there were 2,394 people residing in Salado. There were a recorded 990 households and 761 families. The median income of a household was $63,646 and was $70,667 for a family. Approximately 3.8% of the population lived below the poverty line, including 2.5% of those under age 18 and 4.5% of those aged 65 or over.

Tourist Attractions In Salado

Salado has hidden gems for everyone, from vineyards and breweries to antique shops and hiking trails. Some of the most notable attractions are as follows:

Chalk Ridge Falls Park 

The waterfall at the Chalk Ridge Falls park.

Deemed to be the host of the most beautiful falls in Texas, Chalk Ridge Falls park is a hiking trail with beautiful waters, suspension bridges, and- of course- a beautiful waterfall. This dog-friendly park is open from 8 am until sundown, and the trail has compostable toilets at the trailhead. It is marked as 

a 2.5km hike from the main trail; however, there are many off-shoots of the trail as well.

Tablerock's Goodnight Amphitheatre 

An enormous limestone outdoor amphitheater, Tablerock's Goodnight Amphitheatre hosts many cultural events, such as musical presentations and plays. It is most recognized as the home of the original play "Salado Legends," a musical drama that is performed annually. "Salado Legends" was written to enlighten the public about the impacts of the Scottish settlements in central Texas and how their influence spread statewide. "Salado Legends" was- and continues to be a community effort with community members contributing to the annual production in their own ways. The amphitheater also hosts the annual Tablerock Festival from late July to early August. 

The Stagecoach Inn 

Salado, texas
Stagecoach Inn in Salado, Texas. Image credit: Billy Hathorn via Wikimedia Commons.

The Stagecoach Inn is deemed not only the oldest existing structure in the village but also the oldest continuously running hotel in the state of Texas. It was built in 1852 and has been a member of the Historic Hotels of America since 2018. A simple, two-story wood frame building, the Stagecoach Inn was designed in a frontier vernacular style. The Stagecoach Inn boasts 48 guestrooms and suites and was renovated several times in the 1950s and 1960s to serve as a restaurant. 

Notable People Of Salado 

Scott Cawthon: Writer and video game creator Scott Cawthon, most notably known for the creation and development of the popular video game franchise Five Nights at Freddy's, lives in Salado, Texas, with his wife and children. Born in Houston, Texas, Cawthon's work in video game production began in the 1990s. Cawthorn also has written several novels which lend themselves to the lore of the Five Nights at Freddy's universe. 

Rev. George Washington Baines: George Washington Baines was an American frontier politician, Baptist preacher, editor, and educator. He was the paternal great-grandfather to United States President Lyndon B. Johnson and was the president of Baylor University between 1861 and 1863. Before this, he was a member of the Board of Trustees (1851-59), and he and his wife served as the "house parents" of the female division boarding house for the university for a short time. The Baines' residence is now home to a Bed and Breakfast aptly named "Baines House Inn."

Though small, Salado offers great opportunities to experience a peaceful holiday in naturally beautiful settings and a friendly community. With all the modern amenities in places and great outdoors to explore, Salado is also the perfect place to call home.

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