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27 Feb 10 New Owners Bring Texas Music to Life for Hill Country Town

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West of Austin in the Texas Hill Country, new life is being breathed into the historical town of Albert by three generations of a spirited Texas family with a big love for the Lone Star State that has purchased the 13 acres of pecan trees, stands of wildflowers, and working watering hole and due-to-reopen dance hall.
The Albert Ice House and the 85-year-old Albert Dance Hall, which is undergoing extensive renovation for a spring reopening, are the focus of this fun family project undertaken by Ed and Connie Easley, married 30 years, and their four children and three grandchildren. Their aim: make the town a must-see stop for Hill Country sightseers; a venue for reunions, rallies and the like; and a setting for Texas-style weddings among the flowers and the trees.
“My son Brandon and I had been talking about Albert for almost two years before we purchased the town,” says Ed Easley. “My wife, Connie, and I thought Albert presented a unique opportunity for the Easley family to work together on a project that would inspire us to create a special place where friends and family could gather and experience the simple pleasures and traditions that make the Texas Hill Country special. We hope the experience will bring our family closer together.”
Albert, founded in 1892 20 miles east of Fredericksburg, had a general store, a school that a young LBJ would attend and a post office. Despite descendants’ trying, it had lost most of its population and a series of owner-caretakers and the school had been converted into the community center by the time the Easley family took the reins in fall 2009.
The Ice House, already a well-loved hang-out for locals and a cool discovery by travelers, with its weekend live music and ancient live oak tress out front, will soon have a full-service mobile kitchen offering barbecue and more — under the supervision of the Easleys; children Brian Blumn and Brandon and twins Nick and Nicole Easley; and grandchildren Maverick, Colton and Brady.
Ed, Connie, Brian, Brandon, Nick and Nicole became the Albert Town Council, and its first official act was to unanimously elect Brandon the Town Manager. With a new lease on life, Albert faces the coming Texas spring a hive of activity.
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