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Commissioners approve lawn use for Mardi Gras, reject market days

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At the regular meeting of the Bandera County Commissioners’ Court on January 12, the commissioners approved the use of the courthouse lawn on February 11 for the Bandera County Chamber of Commerce’s Cowboy Mardi Gras Arts and Crafts Show.

Conversely, the Bandera Business Association’s (BBA) request for use of the courthouse lawn for Market Days was rejected by the court, who cited preservation of the grass.

Market days, which is held the first Saturday of each month from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. from March through December, routinely has its vendor tents assembled on the surrounding parking areas around the courthouse.

Alluding to a higher amount of vendor participants, BBA President of the BBA Cindy Beckham told the court that the area on Pecan Street had too much of an incline for the vendors to appropriately set up and that it would be easier for all the vendors to be displayed on the lawn, where they could draw more visitors and tourists.

Beckham also said having the event on the lawn would free up more parking for visitors and tourists.

“I think there’s enough room for everyone without using the lawn,” said Bandera County Judge Richard Evans. “We have to have at least a little bit of grass left.”

Evans said the courthouse lawn already hosts between four and five big events per year.

He also told Beckham that he could see every marked area of dead grass and dirt the vendor tents and related activity leave behind after each event.

Later, the court approved Beckham’s request to use the courthouse lawn for a one-day event, the National Day of the American Cowboy, on July 22 from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

In other business, the commissioners approved $6,816.54 from the COVID Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to be dispersed to the Bandera County IT department.

The funds will be used for the purchase a replacement backup power supply system and extended battery module for their IBM AS400, which has been dying during power failures, according to a rep from the IT department.