Founded by a German prince in 1845, New Braunfels maintains deep ties to its cultural heritage.
Sponsored by the German Adelsverein, immigrants arrived by ship at the port of Indianola and headed inward to the Comal Springs colony. Each man was allowed to bring a chest of tools to use in the new land and through their craftsmanship, helped to bring about trade and commerce and eventually become the 4th largest city in Texas by 1850. Over time, they created the first public school system in Texas, which is now home to some of the oldest churches in the state, as well as Texas’ oldest continuously operating bakery (Naeglin’s Bakery) and dancehall (Gruene Hall).
Many streets and businesses are named after the founding families, and throughout the year you will find festivals and events which flaunt the community’s German flair. The biggest of these is the annual Wurstfest celebration, which is a 10-day salute to sausage, beer, polka, and outright German-flavored fun! Other community events celebrating New Braunfels’ German heritage include Wassailfest and Weihnachtsmarkt, which combine holiday festivities with German tradition, as well as Folkfest, which is an annual reflection on New Braunfels’ past as one of the oldest settlements in Texas.
New Braunfels is also home to a large Hispanic population, and the community celebrates the diversity and growing influence of Mexican culture in our city. One of the newest and fastest-growing community events is the annual Dia de los Muertos Festival, hosted in beautiful Downtown New Braunfels by the Hispanic Business Alliance. At this festival of life, the community is invited to celebrate Hispanic culture with traditional music, authentic Mexican cuisine, and a chance to visit the ofrenda and pay tribute to lost loved ones.