Llano County news


Holidays mean Home Tour in Llano County


All the charm of a stone home place built in 1947 has been accentuated to become a place of business for Beckham Homes, one stop on the Holiday Home Tour of the Llano Woman's Culture Club Dec. 3.

Holiday Home Tour set for Dec. 2


The Holiday Home Tour of the Llano Woman's Culture Club will be bringing visitors to enjoy Llano County homestyle hospitality on Saturday, Dec. 3.

From noon-5 p.m., homes and historical buildings in holiday festive décor will be open for the club's annual fundraiser.

One building is a home-turned-office of local builder Bubba Beckham. He and his wife Kathy had always admired the distinctive old rock home and moved quickly to own it when it came up for sale.

Built in 1947, the Beckham Homes new home offered original details such as wood floors, woodwork and charming interior doors that the Beckham's restored. They added architectural details and antiques to give the house even more character.


Llano holds first Lighted Pumpkin Float

The first-ever Llano River Lighted Pumpkin Float was held on Saturday evening, Oct. 29, at Badu Park in Llano.

The event's coordinator, Cheryl Quallenberg, has been holding the Llano Pumpkin Carving Contest for the past 10 years.

"The night was pure magic and I could not have envisioned a better setting or turnout when I decided to change the concept,” she said. “While the past 10 years of pumpkin contests was geared for more local family fun, this opens it up to visitors and creates an attractive draw. It was treated as an art installation. There is nothing more beautiful than light reflecting on the river.

“We had visitor-participants from Canyon Lake, Burnet, Blanco and even Spain. I think removing the contest portion of it also makes it more inviting. Everyone can carve a pumpkin!"


Books in her blood

By Phil Reynolds

The Highlander

Jackie Cundieff may have taken over as director of Llano County libraries, but that doesn’t mean there’s an upheaval in the system’s future. For one thing, Cundieff thinks the system is “awesome” the way it is.

She was named director of the three-library system (Llano, Kingsland and the Lakeshore Branch at Buchanan Dam) by county commissioners, effective with the retirement of longtime director Dian Ray on Sept. 30.

She’s no stranger to Llano; she’s lived there for 27 years, her husband, Rick, is pastor at First Baptist Church of Llano, and they’ve raised two children, a boy and a girl, both grown.

However, Cundieff said she grew up in Burleson, south of Fort Worth where her mother was school and church librarian.

It’s kind of in her blood.

And after years in the education system, Cundieff went back to school herself and got a Master of Library Science degree from the University of North Texas.


Big bucks = $Big bucks

By Glynis Crawford Smith

The Highlander

Hunters looking for the big bucks can mean big bucks of the green variety to business.

Texas ranks first or second every time a national survey is conducted. The Lone Star State's 2.71 million hunters and anglers spend $4.1 billion annually and support 65,993 jobs, according to a study reported by the Congressional Sportsman Foundation.

“There’s no question that deer hunters boost the economy in small towns such as Burnet for the several weeks they are in the area,” said Kim Winkler, executive director of the Burnet Chamber of Commerce.


Buchanan Dam man arrested on rape and assault charges

by Alexandria Randolph

highland Lakes Newspapers

A Buchanan Dam man and convicted felon was arrested on two violent felony charges after Llano County authorities claimed he assaulted an adult and child in two separate incidences.

William “Willie” Canchola, 30, was arrested on Saturday, Aug. 20, on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and aggravated sexual assault of a child, second-degree and first-degree felonies respectively.

Llano County Sheriff's Lt. Glen Williams said the two incidences occurred in Buchanan Dam, but would not reveal the location of the offense.

“It was separate incidences with a separate victim,” he said, adding that the victim of the aggravated assault with a deadly weapon was an adult.

Authorities would not say whether the victim was a member of Canchola's family or household.


Drowning victim’s body recovered

The body of a man who drowned in Lake LBJ near Sunrise Beach Village was recovered Wednesday after a two-day search.

The man was identified as 74-year-old William Thornton Jr. of Harlingen.

According to a statement released by Sunrise Beach Village Police Chief Laurie Brock, the Llano County Sheriff’s Department received a 911 call at about 7:45 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 9, about a missing swimmer.

The caller reporter Thornton had gone swimming from a boat on Lake LBJ and encountered trouble in the water. The victim went under the water and did not resurface.

Sunrise Beach Village police and fire personnel responded to the scene at end of Beach Drive, where a search began for Thornton.

Joining SBV were personnel from the LCSO, Texas Department of Parks & Wildlife game wardens, Lake Colorado River Authority rangers and firefighters from Kingsland and Buchanan departments.


Llano commissioners weigh cost vs employee retention



Llano County commissioners are struggling to put together a budget while faced with rising costs and hearing that some county employees are leaving for higher-paying jobs in neighboring counties.

Commissioners held the second of two budget workshops on Tuesday, Aug. 2. They’re looking at a draft budget of $14,466,433, an increase of $370,323, or about 2.6 percent, over this year’s budget.

But they also heard Llano County Sheriff Bill Blackburn say that in the past few weeks he’s lost several deputies to higher-paying jobs, including both investigators who handle child sexual abuse cases.

“In one case, they’re being offered $14,000 a year more than we’re paying,” Blackburn said. “I can’t blame them for moving.”

Blackburn told commissioners several county offices hinge on how well the sheriff’s office does its job.


Film company seeks talent in Llano

Casting Works LA is conducting an open casting call Saturday, Aug. 6, for extras for the new web-series, “Freedom on Trial,” to be filmed in Llano.
Extras are needed for the courtroom trial audience scenes and protestors for scenes outside of the courthouse.
The filming will take place Aug. 8-12 and the open casting call will be held on Saturday at the LanTex Theater, 113 West Main Street in Llano from 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
The casting call will consist of a brief talk and photo with a member of the casting or production team. All participants should bring a non-returnable photo.
Interested parties may email castingcwla@gmail.com, though no appointment is necessary. Those unable to attend the open call but would like to be considered can email a picture, phone number, and available dates between Aug. 8-12.
No experience is necessary and all looks and body types are encouraged.


Kingsland man dies in car accident

A late night accident Thursday claimed the life of one person just west of Marble Falls.

The accident occurred when two vehicles collided on Texas Highway 71 near the Burnet and Llano county line at 11:28 p.m. Thursday, July 14, about two miles west of the intersection with U.S. Highway 281.

One man, J. Lee Rethaber, of Kingsland, was killed in the accident. It was unknown what factored into the crash.


Wreck claims one on Texas 71

Long skid marks on the grassy should of Texas 71 lead to the burned remains of the Suzuki auto involved in a multi-vehicle crash Sunday, July 10, that claimed the life of Roland Edwin Greaves, 87.

A Sunday afternoon, July 10, multi-vehicle accident in Horseshoe Bay claimed the life of one man, the Texas Department of Public Safety is reporting.

The accident took place at about 3:38 p.m. Sunday on Texas 71 near Ranch to Market Road 2147 in Llano County.

A 2011 Lincoln SUV driven by Jason McCombs was traveling eastbound on Texas 71 when it crossed into the westbound lanes and collided with a 2005 Suzuki, driven by Perry Greaves, near Summit Rock.


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